I have been trying to write this post for two weeks. Jonathan’s classes are over. The mackerdoodle finished school on Friday. Church programs have wrapped up for the summer. The flip flops have replaced the snow boots. So how do I sum up this year?
It has been both, and simultaneously the easiest, most relaxed seminary year, and the craziest, most demanding one. For three years we all ran on Jonathan’s schedule of classes and work and church commitments. This year we had two adults with five jobs and seminary between them, a kid in school, another in speech therapy and the youngest who turned two, which brings a chaos in its own right. I spent Spring semester trying to figure out who was supposed to go where and when I finally got a grasp on it we had Spring break and I never got my rhythm back. I had to face the fact that as a working mother I could neither be the best mother, nor the best employee I wanted to be. It wasn’t that I had to pick one or the other, it’s that I just couldn’t be the best at either.
That being said, I feel like asking “where has this been all my life?” about my job! I have never felt more perfectly suited to a job. I get to write a curriculum for children, plan games and crafts and activities. I get to meet every person with a small child who comes to our church, and build relationships outside of “we’re in seminary.” I am overflowing with ideas and inspiration for communicating the gospel to children and I would have never known I could do that. It has been a beautiful experience.
Next year Jonathan and I are both down one job. I cannot be a teacher’s aide because of Jonathan’s class schedule (in his *last year* of seminary! How did that happen so quickly?”) and the professor for whom he was TAing has left the seminary to return to preaching. On the other hand, my nursery position and Jonathan’s cleaning job are secure and guaranteed to continue. So next school year is a mystery. How will The Lord provide? I am certainly only that he will, because unlike me, He finishes what he starts. Jonathan has the opportunity to do some pulpit supply for June, so my posting will remain sporadic at least until July as we will be living without regular Internet access. It is a wonderful opportunity for Jonathan, and we are so encouraged to be a bit of a respite for this church which has been seeking a pastor for two years.
And after that, we enter the year long countdown of last things before we pack our things and go wherever The Lord has appointed for us to go.
Friday in the van I had a conversation with the mackerdoodle about how God has given us all different types of brains, and he has given her an inquisitive one, of which she should be proud. She responded, “sort of like how God gave Daddy a pastor’s heart and a brain that reads the Bible and turns it into a sermon?”
And that’s really the point of this entire exercise, isn’t it? As much as I am dreading a year of goodbyes, I am praying that it will, in hindsight, be a year of hellos and new opportunities. I pray that it will be a year of people seeing what my mackerdoodle sees and loving both the heart and the brain that The Lord has fashioned as the head of our family. It will be a crazy, and demanding year, because, aren’t they all? But I believe it will also be a year of finishing well, and starting well and being okay with both.