Today Was Awesome and Weird (Thoughts on Our Pastoral Transition)

Posted on June 10, 2019

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I have never sat in a service at Center City Church and listened to someone preach that feels the call of God to be the pastor at Center City Church. That day was today, June 9, 2019, and it was awesome and weird at the same time

Jon preached with grace, anointing, passion, and an incredibly genuine heart. My mind wandered a few times, to be completely honest. Recent and distant memories flashed across my mind from ten years of standing in that same place pouring into our community. I would catch myself drifting into my thoughts and then refocus on a timely and powerful word from God that was being taught with clarity and courage by my friend.

The message was personally challenging to me as he encouraged us to push away the unnecessary noise in our lives to hear the voice of Jesus calling us to life. 

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The next pastor (we believe) of Center City Church was skillfully and passionately investing into the church that we have loved since she was just a dream in our hearts over ten years ago. I voraciously took notes while sitting on the front row with my wife, Dara.

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Needless to day, my emotion-burrito was full of a lot of different ingredients today. 

The primary feeling that I have had this entire time has been a deep and abiding sense of peace. We are taking a step away from something that we love because we believe that we have heard that direction from our beautiful, unseen God. We are taking a step of faith because we have an instinct that Jon has the vision for the future of this community that we have loved to life over the last ten years. None of this made today any less weird. I think that’s ok, even normal, to feel that way.

Jon and I spent time together in my office pre-service that is connected to the back entrance of the stage. I normally do that alone. We sat together with our wives on the front row during worship. We swayed back and forth similarly, interchanging worshiping with full voice and praying for the folks that would join in person and online to hear the word of God. It was awesome and it was weird. Over the past ten years, I have had the singular instinct of the lead pastor bearing the weight and beauty of Center City Church. It was awesome and weird to share that weight this morning.

Everything I am experiencing right now is way more awesome than weird, but I want you to know that if you’re in a season of transition, as well, it’s ok for it to be weird. God can and will move you in and out of seasons as he chooses, and it’s ok if you feel a mix of emotions along the way.

As a quick reminder, Jon is experiencing this mixture of emotions, as well. He has faithfully served in various roles for over ten years at his current church. Simply put, people absolutely love his family. Just check out his Facebook feed the past few weeks to see the amount of people that are excited for him, but sad that he won’t be at their church every week. There’s humanity all in and through seasons of transition. One person steps into a role as someone else is stepping out and into a new season themselves.

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I believe with every ounce of my being that God has led our family and the Hernandez family to this part of our shared journey. God has so graciously confirmed this through our board of directors, elders, family, close friends, and the many folks from our church that have met and spent time with Jon the past few weeks. Healthy transitions are emotion-burritos full of awesome and weird ingredients that come together to prove that love, grace, hope, sadness, uncertainty, and faith coexist.

Awesome.

 

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