Friday, February 27, 2009

Friday Five: Fork in the Road

Singing Owl is at a life-changing juncture. I do not know which way I will go, but I have been thinking about the times, people and events that changed my life (for good or ill) in significant ways. For today's Friday Five, share with us five "fork-in-the-road" events, or persons, or choices. And how did life change after these forks in the road?

What a question Singing Owl you have asked and a great picture to go with it.

My Forks in the Road

Being a Methodist Pastor means I move when appointed by the Bishop and the Cabinet to serve at a different church. Each church I have served has been different. I just moved in June and am in transition in a large church from serving small churches for the last seven years. It is challenging, exciting, demanding and fun. It has providing lots of opportunities for new ministries, working with people of all ages, creativity, synergy, learning, and a deepening in my spiritual life. The last appointment was a difficult one and so this is refreshing. But even the last appointment grew me as a minister as I allowed God to work in me. I enjoyed the small churches for who they were, the intimacy, the quite times and slower pace.

ThThey too were willing to do new things as God called them into new vision for being the body of Christ. I had moved to these small churches from what in the Methodist Church is considered a large church but compared to this church is medium size. I loved serving there because it was growing, lots of families, young people, the energy, their missional nature, the contemporary church, and the opportunities.

2. Adoption We have adopted three kids. Each child we have adopted has led to fork in the road, whether to adopt this child or not. We had tried for years to get pregnant, quit, and became content with being childless. With the move to Huntsville, we found out about adoptions from China and that the age limits did not effect us. We could have stopped with our first who was a baby at that time, but we adopted the next two. However we chose to adopt older children who had “special needs”, because we felt led to and wanted to. Having adopted older kids who had cleft lip and cleft palettes, meant taking paths of spending time in hospitals, Doctor’s offices, speech therapies, and with teachers. Being adopted when they were older meant they came with emotional and behavioral needs which meant lots of work on our part, lots of love, patience, therapies, medication, time with teachers and counselors, reading books, learning how to deal with their needs.

3. There have been other forks, but the above seem to make more than five. I’ll just say getting married was a big fork. Going to college and then Seminary were forks in the road for me. Doing Clinical Pastoral Education and training for Pastoral Counseling/Marriage and Family Therapy were forks in the roads of my life. All along the way there have been people who were there for such a time to be part of my life, to be a sign post, help me on my journey, way in the balances which way to go, encourage me, or walk with me.

So what about you, what forks in the road have you taken?


Sally said...

Great post as usual Abi, I love the way you describe the adoption of your children and the way that each decision made a difference. Sorry I haven't visited in a while.

altar ego said...

I agree that some things in life are more than the sum of their parts. Adoption seems to me to be one of those things! Glad to read your post and learn more about you.

Singing Owl said...

Lovely, Abi! Right about now I envy the Methodist system. I'd love to be told that a church is waiting for me in _______. Sigh. There are pros and cons to each, I know, but right now I'm thinking the congregational system is crummy! I have a week and a half to go at my present church and then I am just plain old unemployed.