Sunday, June 24, 2012
Tonight something very special took place at 1200 West Grantham Street in Goldsboro. Not only was it our last service at Faith (tears!), but it was also Jonathan's ordination service. Now, growing up a pastor's daughter, I was certainly familiar with ordination. In case you don't know what it is, ordination pretty much entails (at least at our church) meeting with the deacons so they confirm you're not a heretic or anything, then giving a testimony before Preacher grills you Perry Mason-style in front of the church regarding several basic points of theology and doctrine. =) Then the staff and deacons "lay hands" on you, pray, and you get a Bible along with an ordination certificate officially inducting you into the Gospel ministry.
That's what an ordination is. Before tonight, I had witnessed quite a few ordination services and had a pretty good idea of what they were. In fact, it was during an ordination service several years ago at Faith that Jonathan and I, as teenagers, looked at each other and sort of telepathically agreed that this was what we wanted for our lives. In that moment, we just knew that God had full-time ministry in our future, and we were right. And now that we've been married for a couple of years, we've experienced ministry first-hand. However, it wasn't until tonight that I truly grasped what ordination means.
It's hard to describe just how overwhelming, frightening, and yet totally exciting it is to think about the fact that the two of us, though unworthy and unproven, have been chosen by God for His service. We have literally, formally been set apart for a life in ministry, and to accomplish anything less would now be a disservice to the Lord, our families, and the many people who have invested in our lives through the past several years. Talk about responsibility! Tonight as I watched my husband talk about God's call on his life and his plans for our future, I was a) so proud I thought I'd burst and b) incredibly thankful that I married a man of God. It was very cool to hear people who have known Jonathan his entire life talk about what a servant he is (which is very true) and to think about how many people he has influenced over the past years at Faith. We hope to see many more in the coming years!
The service was so special, but it wasn't until we were kneeling at the altar, surrounded by staff and deacons, that it hit me- "Good grief, they're talking about us!" (Yes, I'm very bright.) I am so full of emotions- mostly excitement, a little fear, and what I'd call a healthy dose of trepidation as we head into this next chapter in our lives. It feels a little like leaving "the nest" since Faith has been Jonathan's home for so long and has felt like home to me for years. Am I nervous about being "on our own" for the first time? Um, yes. Do I feel totally inadequate? Most of the time. But do I think that ministry is the most awesome adventure possible for our lives? Definitely.
For years, one of my favorite preachers has been known to say, "God's business is the greatest one in all the world." I couldn't agree more, and I couldn't be prouder that my husband is one of "God's men" and that I get to serve by his side. (If you think I'm being sappy tonight, I am... just bear with me for this one time.) ORDAINED- set apart, invested officially with ministerial authority, sent out into ministry. What it means to me is this- Jonathan and I get to spend our lives serving God. Does it get any better than that?
No, friends, I don't think that it does. =)
Faith family, we love you all so much and will miss you greatly! Please come see us... it's not too far away!