Sunday, January 2, 2011
Good bye RUF
So it's the first week of the new year and I normally feel exhilarated to start afresh. Yet, this year I found myself hesitant, to say the least. There are a lot of unknowns, a lot of realities to face with this change of the calender. You see, as of January 1, Reformed University Fellowship (RUF) at Marshall is no more. A couple of months ago, the decision had to be made to close the doors, the money has run out. And with that, my husband is out of a job. This reality is more than enough to come to grips with, but of course, the many other realities that accompany it are hitting me this New Year's week. Hitting me the hardest this week is the reality that we are no longer a part of RUF. It truly was a dream come true when we became part of this community. We have loved ministering to college students. The opportunity for Jason to go to training with some of the best pastors in the world made me jealous twice a year, but I got to go to Wives' retreat and to conferences with students where I got to sit under these same pastors' teaching, become good friends with their better halves (the men would all say this is true), and be ministered to by them all. We thought we would be doing this part of ministry for many more years. God has different plans for us, we just don't know what those plans are yet. The other reality is that in another 10 days I go back to work full time. Please don't hear me wrong, it is a true provision of God that I have been working part time at a clinic that is willing to give me more hours and that God guided me into a career that enables us to not have to work numerous minimum wage paying jobs to make ends meet. Jason will be at home with the kids, sending out resumes, praying for a new call. For this, God has made me grateful, truly, though at first I was just flat out frustrated that I was having to be breadwinner again. But the reality is, I am not sure I can keep this perspective every day when I come home exhausted and burdened by the needs of my patients. Sometimes I feel like I don't have enough left to give my family when I come home. I hate that this is true of me, and therein presents another struggle. The reality of my limitations. There are going to be a lot of things I just won't be able to do, at least for now. The reality of the unknowns is already getting to me. Then, to top it all of, the reality of my need for Jesus. This is, at least, a really good reality, but it also means seeing the depth of my need. My need to learn what it means to hope only in Him, not the job, the new house, the new call even. My need to really cling to Him when all I want to do is find a way myself. My need to pray more, really pray. My need to stop looking at the people and things around me to tell me all will be well. My need to believe that His plans for me do give me a future and a hope. What looks bad is intended for good to me, to my family, to the students that attended RUF and are now struggling with this loss in their own rite. I want to learn to rejoice IN the sufferings, not despite them- "we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame" Romans 5:3-4 What peace that gives me, knowing He will accomplish it and no matter how well or how poorly I "handle" this His love and His plan for me cannot be altered, it does not depend on me. We covet your prayers and are so thankful for the encouragement so many of you have given.