By Lynn Corker
Maybe you have said this in recent weeks, “Is summer really over? It feels like it flew by!” With the start of the new school year (and UM Football) upon us, we are left looking back wondering how Summer seemed to be gone too quickly. Have you had this feeling?
I’m experiencing that “just one more day” feeling now. I have been in a season where I was wondering what Jesus was up to. I’ve been out of work for several months and have had to lean in to the “daily bread” that the Lord promises, and also to be content with what I have. It’s been during this season I have applied for countless jobs with seemingly endless closed doors, and I found myself asking, “Jesus, what are you up to? I am embarrassed and exhausted. Whatever it is you need me to do next to get out of this season, I’ll do it, but make it end!” Isn’t it just like me to question the timing of the Lord…I just wanted Winter to end…and He was planning for Spring.
It was about the time when I was ready to give up on my professional career search that St Luke approached me with a unique opportunity that fit with my unique skill set:
- St Luke has some needs in the area of youth discipleship, international missions and various other areas. “Coincidentally,” I have been a youth worker, am now doing international missions with Women of the Pearl.
- St Luke wanted someone with flexibility to fill in while we are on the journey of discovering our vision. I needed to feel useful, productive and let’s be honest, my bank account wasn’t endless either (Darn!).
So we started dreaming about what it would look like to enter in to this working relationship. There was an understanding that this arrangement had an unclear timeline. If I were to find a job, and it looks like the next thing Jesus has for me, I would take it. On the flip side, St Luke may discover my gifts don’t fit with what Jesus is inviting them in to next, and I would vacate the role. However long or short that time may be, we were willing to commit to one another. With excitement, I began serving my faith family in early August. What a privilege to work with people I love, people I have been in the trenches with, people who want to know and follow Jesus.
It’s funny how some seasons seem so long and we can’t wait for them to end. And then other seasons, it seems, as soon as they start they are over; we long to extend them. Well friends, I find myself feeling that very exact emotion. About a week after I joined the St. Luke staff I was extended an offer to work for GE Aviation in Grand Rapids, MI. I wrestled with this decision more than you will understand, and in the end, Jesus was inviting me in to a new adventure that I needed to say “Yes,” to. It’s so hard to be moving away so quickly, “Why couldn’t this offer have happened before I started with St Luke, Lord?” I don’t understand why this season was so short, but I am certain Jesus knows, and that’s good enough.
This may leave you with a lot of questions; How St. Luke will manage this transition? …and I’m glad you asked. You see our intention at St Luke is not to have one point person for any single ministry. Any of us, at any given time, may be called away and we want to make sure our relationships remain intact. While my physical presence will be more sporadic, and the bulk of the responsibilities will slowly transition, I will continue to be involved. My involvement will focus on working with our adult leaders who are in discipling relationships with our youth. I will spend time with the adult leaders building skills, raising concerns and resolving issues…and our students will continue to feel valued because their adult leaders remain.
I will still be involved with our upcoming international mission efforts, particularly because Women of the Pearl will be taking a team to Uganda in February, and we want to open that opportunity to the St. Luke family. More on those details in the coming months.
Answers to why my staff season with you all was so short may never come, but we can be assured of the provision of our Lord in all circumstances because He says the same to each of us every day, “Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you” (Heb 13:5b).
I love you, St. Luke Lutheran Church. You are my family. You are my accountability. You are my friends. You are on a mission that I believe so deeply in that I’m willing to step out in faith and follow Jesus to the ends of the Earth for. Join me on this mission of being a Jesus follower, trusting His invitation and making disciples until He returns. So until the next season comes, may God continue to bless you richly and “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful. “ (Heb 10:23)