A New Year Unlike any Other

A new year. A new leaf. A new beginning. A new something. We don’t really know what.

Usually December 31st and January 1st have been an opportunity to look back, assess, and look forward but with little to no difference between both days and the change in calendar year. When January 1st roles around, most of what had been going on leading up to December 31st just keeps going with perhaps one or two added resolutions.

While January of 2013 did mark a big change in pastoral ministry as we were getting ready to join a church planting initiative here in Ottawa, it was still ministry and still somewhat familiar.

Not this time. This year there is a huge difference between today and tomorrow. December 31st feels like a chapter of our lives is closing and when we wake up tomorrow we will be waking up to the unknown. This is the last place we would have expected to find ourselves even just a few months ago. Things shifted back in August when our church planting project came to an end. Due to lack of funding and a change in the general ministry vision and direction of the network, we were told our initiative could no longer be financially sustained and that we no longer fit the necessary profile. While it came as a slap in the face, we understood the implications and agreed that we could not go on. So we stepped back and have since been digesting everything. It has been a confusing few months to say the least. I am now looking for work and that is quite a challenge in and of itself. We are thankful for the financial assistance that we continued to receive as we transitioned away from that ministry.

This morning as I sit in my reading chair and drink my coffee I find myself in unfamiliar territory. Today marks the last day of the salary we continued to receive. It’s not just about the money but more so about the final segment, the last tie. It’s an end. The exciting new ministry opportunity we joined 2 years ago with the anticipation of doing ministry with a team of friends and starting a new church did not come to pass. Of course we’ve known this for a few months now, but today the last connection to that ministry comes to an end. The page is turned.

When we wake up tomorrow it will be a new year like we’ve not known before. One where we have no idea what is ahead. One where I don’t even have a job to begin with. I’m reminded of the words from the Exodus movie when Moses asks his wife if she intends to renounce her faith for him and she says no. He then replies, “good, because you’ll need it now more than ever.” It seems appropriate.

Part scary and part thrilling, this is where we find ourselves as we look forward to the stroke of midnight, the end of a somewhat disappointing year, and the beginning of a new chapter and a year filled with new opportunities.

What about you, how was 2014 and what do you look forward to in 2015?

(In my next post I’ll explain my intention to begin blogging again and how I hope to go about it. Layout is a work in progress)

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