Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A Year Later

This was published on August 19, 2008

It has officially been a year since I moved to Denver. It is strange to think that a year ago I had just said goodbye to Wichita and was just starting to get settled into a new place. New opportunities before me and new people every where. There was an excitement in the air and a newness to it all. I was so thrilled to be here and had such a sense of peace for it all. I had found a great house, great roommates and was going to parties meeting people left and right. School was starting and I was so thrilled to be learning again. I was soaking in the books and reading everything placed in front of me. I had no jobs yet, and although it was a little scary there was something exciting about not knowing what I would end up doing. Life was new again. It felt like an exciting adventure.
In many ways things are still good and I still know in my hear that this is where I need to be and what I need to be doing, but in other ways that excitement has worn off. God has really tried me this year. He's stretched me in so many ways. Its been a struggle, its been a serious living out of the cross. I have definetally gone through more high and low points, more mountain peaks and valleys if you will, in one year than I ever have. I mean that both literally and figuratively, I am in Colorado after all. This year I have struggled to Trust more than I ever have, I have learned the importance of prayer in a powerful new way, and I have learned to appreciate the importance of community and friendships in a whole new way. I have also realized in a new way what my true passion is and I want nothing more than to go back to that when I'm done here.
I think God called me here not only to experience something new and to grow in knowledge but to also learn to appreciate more fully what I had and to be formed into a stronger man of faith.
This past year has been hard yet awesome. I have two jobs. One that I love but I've realized I don't love as much as Teaching. One that I don't love so much and has helped me realize I'm called to teaching and Youth Ministry is something to do on a volunteer basis and not full time. Parish Ministry has too many politics and I'm not a fan. The most amazing part about Totus Tuus was to get to see some of the fruits of my labor in Wichita, getting to witness three former students teach for me and really see them a true men of God who had grown leaps and bounds.
The Community out here has been rough. It definetally is not all its cracked up to be. I have met some great people and all but my life is so busy and hectic that when I do have time to really hang out and build relationships no one is around. Everyone seems to be kind of into their own little groups out here and breaking into them is pretty tough. At the same time God knows me well and knows that I am a person that gets attached to people quickly and invest a lot into relationships so I can't help but think that He hasn't allowed me to get too close to people because I have such a strong feeling that Denver is only a temporary stop for me.
So at this point the newness is gone. I still have a strong feeling that this is where I'm supposed to be. But I know its not meant to be permanent and that I guess is what makes it tough. On the one hand I love it out here and love the weather and the mountains but it just doesn't feel like home. I hate this feeling of transition but have a feeling that something big is around the corner for me. I don't know what it is, but I have to continually trust that God is working and will reveal things to me in good time.
I stand now at the beginning of year two. Classes start tonight. I have a Thesis to write and the daily grind continues with work. Dave has moved to Illinois, Beschorner is married and that has left Konrade and I. We moved into a new house a few weeks ago and found two other guys to move in with us as well. The house is in a a great neighborhood and is a steal; $1,000 a month split four ways. I can't believe I'm only going to be paying $250 a month to live in Denver Colorado. I never paid rent that cheap even in Wichita. I wake up every morning and am amazed at God's glory through the beauty of the mountains and feel like I need to pinch myself because I live in Denver, yet at the same time I wake up every morning with a little ache in my heart because I'm not going to work at Bishop Carroll and I don't get to see my boys go through their Senior year. Yet there is a beauty in all of this that brings me closer to Christ and forces me to trust Him more. As I begin this year all I can do is continue to surrender.
Last week I went to a Praise and Worship thing called Logos and went and got prayed over. One of the guys that prayed over me said that the image he kept getting was of me in the womb of Mary and he challenged me to reflect on that image. If you think about it, it is a beautiful image. Mary wants to take us into her womb and form us just as she formed Christ in her womb. I am convicted now more than ever that if I want to continue to surrender and trust over this next year I need to place myself into the womb of Mary so that she may form me more perfectly and bring me closer to her Son.
I pray that I may trust more and cling to Christ throughout this next year. That I may experience joy through suffering, that I may enjoy the views from the tops of the mountains, and understand that when I am in the valleys, I am there for a reason and in order to appreciate the view I have to go through the valleys.
Mary I am thine and all I have is thine, Mary I am thine and all I have is thine, Mary I am thine and all I have is thine!

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