Tuesday, March 1, 2016

The Year of the Leap

The past several months have been a something like a climb up the ladder to a high dive platform.  Over the summer I went public with my impending retirement and since that time have been occupied with all kinds of regular-type work, helping to guide the church I have served for the last six and a half years through this big transition.  It felt sort of good to retreat into the routines of work, even if those routines were now being carried out in the shadow of a looming deadline.  But yesterday, Feb. 29th, 2016, I  reached the top of the ladder and stood with my toes hanging over the edge of the platform.  Yesterday was Leap Day.

It was my last day as a pastor at Yakima Covenant Church and, more than that, my last day working in church ministry.  I am walking away from all of that, for reasons you can read about in posts like "Everything is Changing" and "What's Love Got to Do With It?"  Our farewell was marked by an incredible outpouring of love and support, for which we will forever be grateful.
But with the support of my amazing wife and kids, I am striking out on my own, vocationally speaking, seeking a new kind of life, new ways to make a living.  It is a little bit crazy - to leave behind the security of a successful career.  I have only a few answers to the many questions this usually provokes from reasonable people.  What will I be doing?  How will we pay the bills?  Have you been taking your meds?  All will be answered in due time!

Leap Day was a wildly appropriate day to mark such a radical change in our life.  I admit that as I packed up the last things from my office and walked out for the last time, I felt a moment of panic - this is really a big leap, a risk, it will bring new challenges, some of which we can anticipate and some that I am sure are the sneaky type, waiting around corners we haven't reached yet.  While I've been observing a sort of radio silence since last summer, wanting to give the community that I served plenty of room for the big changes they have been and will be experiencing, that will be changing.  Over the next weeks and months I will be positively prolific as I try my hand at this new thing, whatever this new thing looks like.  And I'll reflect a little not just on the "what" that occupies the coming days, but also on the "why."

Here's how I figure it: everybody has got some big leap they are contemplating.  If the faltering, stumbling, bumbling steps of an aspiring beekeeper-shepherd-farmer-philosopher can be of any help at all as you consider taking whatever plunge you are staring at, then I call that a win-win.  I'll chronicle adventures and reflections during this whole Leap Year.  What kind of story will it end up being?  Time will tell - it's the year of the leap and we'll take it as it comes!


  1. It is great to see another blog from you. Always enjoy them (even if I have to google some things). What a blessing it has been knowing you these past 2 years. You have an incredible way with words and it amazes me. Wishing you and your dear family all the best as you take this LEAP, and begin this new journey. You will be terribly missed. I know whatever your future holds, it will be successful..

  2. It was good to see you Tuesday evening. God has wonderful plans for you and your family. God bless you as you follow his lead.