“A good sign that you are moving in the direction of wisdom is a vague sense of discomfort.” Kristin Armstrong from Work in Progress: An Unfinished Woman’s Guide to Grace

Stuck somewhere in the middle, clenching tightly to the old and desperately trying to grasp what is new. Ever been there before? It’s exactly where I am now. And it’s a mite uncomfortable. A bit fragmented.

A few weeks ago I mentioned our move to a new address, a new church, and my struggle with connecting and building community. And I’m a girl who needs community.

There are so many layers to the story of how we came to be in this place. All blessings from God. All a part of His master plan for us, that much I know for sure. Clear direction from Him.

We are right where we are supposed to be.

And I am out of my comfort zone.

I am nursing a heaping dose of self pity. A speck of discouragement. A pinch of frustration.

A whole big bunch of my will. A wee bit of Gods’.

Not the way it’s supposed to be.

Oswald Chambers said “That is where the battle is truly fought~in the realm of your will before God.”

I was spoiled for sure. When your church home is also your place of employment, it’s easy to connect with others. Build relationships. Build community. I was on the inside. Knew practically everyone. And most knew me.

Community came easy there. Not so much here.

And then a precious lady spoke up in our Sunday School class last week. Sharing testimony about how much love she had felt as they were dealing with the loss of a loved one.

A tiny crack. A small surrendering. Though stubbornly I still held tight. Hanging on to the familiar.

The choir put on a praise and worship time last evening. My sweet man and I went. The music was beautiful.

The witness of worship was even more. God was surely present in that place. You could feel it. Words sang. Faces transformed. Hearts softened. Chills running up and down my arms.

And there, there right at the end, my song. My. Song. A song I had mentioned months ago to the Choir Director. Told him how I would love to hear it. How it had been my personal anthem last summer, when my body was so weak and my mind was ravaged with fear. When I knew I had been called out into the deep.

“You called me out upon the waters

The great unknown, where feet may fail 

And there I will find you in the mystery

In oceans deep,

My faith will stand

And I will call upon your name

And I will keep my eyes above the waves

When oceans rise

My soul will rest in your embrace

For I am Yours

And You are mine

Your grace abounds in deepest waters

Your sovereign hand will be my guide

Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me

You’ve never failed and You won’t start now”

Oceans by Hillsong

When the worship ended, I fought my way to the stage. Stumbled up a few steps. I took the choir director’s hand in mine and I said thank you for that song. You did a beautiful job. And he said I put that in there for you. I remembered you telling me how much it meant to you. I put it in the program for you.

And I broke. Broke the hanging on to of expectations. Loosened my grip on the past.

Surrendered.

I made my way back up the aisle to leave. I paused to speak to the precious one who spoke of such love last week. And she spoke words of wisdom into my heart. Telling me I can stay connected to my other church family, as I grow here and make new to go with the old.

It won’t be easy. There may be a little discomfort.

Surrendering. Giving in. Letting go. Building new.

Freedom.

Ecclesiastes 5:19B-20NLT says, “To enjoy your work and accept your lot in life~this is indeed a gift from God. God keeps such people so busy enjoying life that they take no time to brood over the past.”

I’m through brooding over the past. There is no loss. I will maintain the relationships and community with the precious people from my former church home. And I will move forward, gaining more, loving more, building new relationships.

New community.

Always striving to do Kingdom work.

Graced by God

Tammy Mashburn