Texts from the Empty Tomb • 05/04/2020

MVLC Church Council Member Sonja Dahl’s devotion for Monday, May 4.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not on your own understanding. —PROVERBS 3:5

There have been many occasions where I truly put my trust in the Lord, the majority of them during transitions in my life. My first major transition was moving from a small town where everyone knew me, to Pacific Lutheran University where I did not know a single person. Leaving my family and moving into a dorm was an exciting and scary transition into young adulthood. I distinctly remember the dorm room door shutting after my parents said goodbye. I started to cry, because for the first time in my life, I was not surrounded by people that I knew. I remembering saying a quick prayer asking God to guide me and give me strength. I put my trust in the Lord that I picked the right college.

Another major transition in my life was adopting two children, with my husband, Kevin, after years of infertility. This was an especially challenging time of my life, as I put my trust in the Lord since I did not understand when we would adopt a child.  I spent a lot of time worrying about so many things that I could not control. I really wanted to be in control, but, of course, I was not. I chose to trust in God, even though I could not see the bigger picture. Now, I cannot imagine my life without my two children, Eric and Jessica.

The most recent transition for me, personally, was in my job. I accepted a manager position at the end of December 2019. I had been transitioning into the new role for two months when the coronavirus pandemic began. I must admit that my faith in God has carried me through many difficult days recently.

Transitions require an old part to end, and a new part to begin. It is a time of grief, loss, anxiety, and hope for the future. Transition times are often hard, as letting go of the old and moving towards the new path can be difficult. It takes trust to begin something new. As disciples of Christ, God calls us to trust in Him.

My prayer for our church as we transition from Pastor John resigning to a new time in the life of Mountain View is to trust in the Lord and believe the future will be bountiful. This is an interim time; a time for transition and letting go. It is a time of gratitude, grief, and of looking towards the future.

I personally want to thank Pastor John for 22 years of service in leading our church. I have so much gratitude for his leadership, pastoral care, and for challenging me to grow in my own faith life while being a disciple of Christ at Mountain View Lutheran church.

During this interim time, let us be thankful, yet allow ourselves to grieve and look towards the future. I trust the Lord will be with us on our journey into the future.

Let us pray.

Heavenly Father, be with our church as we transition into a new time. We put our trust in you for guidance and encouragement.

Lord God, allow us to grieve the loss of a strong pastoral leader and be with Pastor John as he begins a new transition, as well.

Holy Spirit, give strength to the staff to continue working and providing the support our fellow church members need during this time at home during the stay at home public health order.

Great Healer, be with Pastor Bri and Pastor Kyle as they transition into becoming parents for baby Suzie. Be with the nurses and doctors at the hospital to care for her in the NICU.

Creator, thank you for the beautiful creation of spring time; a transition of plants into blooming flowers and growing grass.

In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Image: Photograph of pink dogwood by Troy Kehm-Goins.