Saturday, July 07, 2007

Occupied (& Terrified)

There is a great deal going on in my life, much of which deserves to be written about. Some of it is so weighed down with meaning, so rare and precious, that it feels as though any attempt to capture and confine it in words (in prose, at any rate, and my poetic Muse is unreliable, tending to show up only under the most extreme conditions) would somehow dishonor it. Virtually all of it has to do in some way with the impending relocation of my household and ministry from Stockton, California to Warsaw, Indiana. Suffice it to say that I am experiencing new dimensions of bittersweetness--bitterness that is nearly unbearable, mingled with sweetness that actually is unbearable. In time, I may be able to give more verbal substance to this experience.

There are also many items that cross my personal radar screen on a daily basis that make me think, "I should blog on that." The Anglican soap opera continues to play out, with all new episodes regularly hitting cyberspace even during the dog days of summer. There's a lot of stuff I would like to weigh in on.

But here's the reality: In eight days, I conclude a thirteen year ministry at St John's, Stockton. It is--what shall I say?--a rich emotional atmosphere. Nine days later, on 24 July, we board a plane to Brazil--two days at the majestic Iguaçu Falls, a long weekend in the megalopolis of São Paulo, and a week or so in the old colonial capital of Salvador--hopefully all a nice balance of touring, resting, and visiting with family. We arrive back in Stockton on 6 August. On the 7th, the professional packers do their thing. On the 8th, they load the moving van. On the 9th, the four of us--Brenda and me and her two quadrapeds that I can't talk her into leaving behind--head out in my Ford Escape hybrid for a scenic tour of Interstate 80. Sometime on the 12th we expect to pull into Warsaw. If the moving gods smile on us (I wouldn't attribute such caprice to the actual God), our household goods will arrive the next day. On Wednesday the 15th I expect to show up at St Anne's and occupy the Rector's study.

But before we can get on that plane to Brazil, we need to examine, sort, and cull all our worldly goods. Until we started this task, I had no idea we possessed so many worldly goods. I have reached a stage in my life when I am no longer interested in being a collector, no longer interesting in acquiring stuff just to have it ... and eventually move it. And, all along, our house also has to be ready to put on the market--and what a market it is! My, how things have changed in the past two years. It's too depressing for me to talk about. Think about it: Getting ready to move and getting a house ready to show are not compatible projects. They work against each other. Yet, we are Anglicans, so we will no doubt find the via media...or, failing that, somehow muddle through.

Grace abounds. But I'm not sure it is so abundant as to allow for the level of regular blogging to which I aspire. I'm sure you understand.


Ann said...

Prayers for centeredness in the midst of it all. If you get off I-80 in Wyoming for about 2 hours you will find yourself in Lander - we have lots of room. If you are in Rock Springs on a Sunday we can put you to work!

angela said...

while we may not be able to help you pack, downsize your "collections", or sell the house, we are going to make sure that your trip to Brazil is the perfect mixture of touring, relaxing, and visiting with family. we love you and brenda and are sending you lots of support and strength in these emotional days.

Barb said...

You and Brenda have been in my thoughts and prayers often as these deep days in Stockton draw to a close. As Ann wrote, may you and Brenda continually feel centered, easily make wise decisions both large and small, and sleep well every night.

Again, the benediction I first heard from Johm Claypoole:
Go in peace
And as you are going, know this:
By the grace of God you were brought into this world.
By the mercy of God you have been sustained to this very moment.
And by the love of God, fully revealed in Jesus the Christ,
You are being redeemed, now and forevermore. Amen.

If ya'll discover the secret of culling without regret, please let me know what it is!

Hugs to you both! Barb :D

Martial Artist said...

My prayers will be with you as you undertake to cull your possessions. My sympathies also, as we have gone through two very large moves since I retired from US naval service in 1991, the first downsizing our available space by 1/3, the second downsizing by 40%. Both moves involved substantial culling and the latter one, just over two years ago, is still not complete as far as culling goes. But it does seem to get a bit easier the more one culls.

God's blessings