Monday, September 17, 2012


Last week was a stressful week.  The announcement that I was leaving Partners Worldwide and going to a new organization and a new part of Africa became very real for me, as well as for people who know and care about me.  I spent three days in regional planning meetings following the announcement, which felt surreal at best.
Bob's tree

By the time Sunday came, I had reached my limit of stress and needed to get away.  So, I decided to go spend some time with a loved one who is so very missed at this time.  I drove up to Bliss, MI (near Mackinaw City - right by Wilderness State Park) to be with Bob - or at least his remains.  We planted a red maple tree where we buried his ashes, so I spread out my blanket and lay beside that tree for a couple of hours.  (At this point, it is still "beside" the tree instead of "under" as it's not that big yet!)

And we talked.  Well, I talked.  And talked.  He did what he is good at - he listened.  At least, the wind listened.  I miss his wisdom.  I miss his discernment.  I miss his decisiveness.  I miss his intensity.  I miss his faith.  I miss his faith in me.  I miss his intense brown eyes looking into mine - checking in with how I'm really doing.  I miss holding his hand while we drive.  I miss being in that part of the world with him.  I miss the proximity of having someone nearby to talk about the mundane and the important.  And there have been some pretty important things going on in my life lately.

My view from beside the tree.
Some people have asked me what Bob would think of the house....or about my decision to move to Kenya...or to go to a whole new organization.  I wish I knew.  I can guess.  I can only guess.  I think he would think that the house is plain and like a box...but that it has good potential.  He would have hated all the work that has to be done on the house.  He would have loved to live in Kenya.  He believed in me and my ability to make things happen so I think he would have been okay with the change, but I don't know what he would think about International Christian Ministries or the concept of working with a seminary.

One thing about Bob is that he believed in me and what God is doing in and through me.  And he also reminded me often that there was very few things in his life that he felt called by God to do - God just didn't speak to him that clearly.  But, once he decided to do something, he was to do it as if called by God. 

Sturgeon Bay - one of our favorite beaches.
And that is what I now need to do.  Time has moved on.  This week it will be 2.5 years since Bob's death.  Both kids are in college and on their own.  I decided to buy this house.  I decided to move to a new ministry with a new position.  And now I must trust that God will work out for good the decisions that this child made, following prayer and consultation.