Over my years I have had the experience of ‘enjoying a
honeymoon period’ in previous ministry incarnations. There is no ‘honeymoon
period’ with the folks at chaplaincy. Instead there is a ‘testing period’.
People are looking to see who I am and how I will deal with people and
problems. There is an inherent scepticism.
I find all this perversely refreshing. After all I am not
just some new guy come to offer programming, at the most basic level I am
seeking my way into the community and into people’s lives. This community takes
that very seriously, as they should!
At the same time that I appreciate the testing it is also a
lonely and of course trying time. I am so glad that I already have
relationships with some through the Up Town Community and I know those were
built over time. New relationships in new community will take patience and
consistency. I have a great many ideas about the way things could develop and
how my particular gifts could help that happen. Many of these ideas excite me a
lot! But all of that must be on hold until the relational ground work is firmly
In my short time I have seen people make real progress in
their walk and life and I have seen others make tragic mistakes. I am reminded
that I must not tout fragile gains as being any more than that but neither
should I be devastated by slips.
I am trying to put in place a support system to fit my new
circumstances. Life is always changing and I am constantly adapting. Those who
know me well will know that I love the energy of these kinds of times but I
find myself already not sleeping well and I realise I must put in place a
support system to help me develop methods of shedding things (Casting all my
cares on Him (Jesus) for He cares for you.)
The season of “The wedding” is over for a while. Linda and I
attended 4 weddings over the last six weeks! Each was different and highly
enjoyable. It was great to see young people launching out together in new
adventures and be able to reflect on my new journeys and the ongoing stability
that I enjoy in so many ways in my life.