Skip to main content

This will be the first day of the rest of my life...hopefully not.

I know that seems like a strange title, but I really don't know how I feel today. Over the weekend I was told that I have to slow down in order to avoid certain "side-effects" of my stroke. What exactly that means, I don't know. What I am facing right now is the uncertainty of one question, that really manfiests itself in many issues: what do I eliminate? Now on the surface that is an easy question to answer: I simply eliminate anything unneccesary. Ok, what is unneccesary? Teaching Sunday night connecting point? Teaching Sunday School? Visitation? Board Meetings? Missions? Building and Grounds...I mean what do I eliminate? Trying to narrow down to one can be very hard and then I have to come to grips with the fact that it might be permanently. I hope not, but it might be. That means that once I "rearrange" my schedule, it might be permanently. That is a big thing to process. I mean, I always adjusted my schedule for a short term depending on my situation, but this might be forever. I am struggling with guilt as I eliminate something...does that mean it does not warrant my full attention? Does that mean I am "cutting it loose". I realize that some people think I am being unreasonable, but what would happen if the reader had to prioritize several very important things. Does that mean that some things are less important? I know I have to do it, but it does not make it easy. This is the first week I will be facing with a new schedule and I am just getting a little apprehensive.

Comments

  1. Hey, Jim - think Jeremiah 29:11, when the Lord sent a message of hope. You are *still* affecting lives.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Making a BIG, but somewhat hurtful, decision...

A few years ago I was presented with the opportunity to come back to Stratford, Iowa, to First Baptist church, as their pastor; for those of you who have followed this blog for some time, FBC in Stratford was my first pastorate. Let's just say I prayed about it as I was jumping at the opportunity. The church has a parsonage, so I could live there and not have to worry about a houe payment; and I needed to slow down, and this was a part time position (which, as a side note, allowed for me to get a greater disability from the VA than when I was working full time with St. Croix Hospice...) We love Stratford, and absolutely love the church; the people are wonderful and accepted us, again, with open arms. This was, for me, the perfect position: I get to pastor a church I LOVE, I get to do life with people I LOVE, and I have already had the opportunity to do weddings and baptism services for kids (adults now) that I have known their entire lives. IT IS GREAT. The longer I have been here,

A stroke survivor's memory is tricky sometimes...

Tomorrow I will preach the funeral for a dear friend of mine. He was the definition of a selfless person. I truly appreciated all that he did, but, when I was meeting with the family on Wednesday a memory came to me suddenly and I was suddenly overcome with emotion. Let me back up a little bit: After my stroke in December, 2008 my license was revoked for obvious reasons and it took me some time and practice before I was able to drive again. I finally got my license back in February, 2009. But, shortly after I got my license back the reality of the severity of my stroke became evident: my stroke had seriously impacted the PONS area of my brain stem, and therefore, a lot of my nerves were negatively impacted. One of the nerves that was damaged was the nerve that controls my eye movements; my left eye would would twitch, at times almost uncontrollably, and that made it really difficult to drive, particularly at night. That brings me to the memory that left me so emotional. Fast forwar

It's been a long time...but here I am back in Stratford

It has been nearly 6 years since I have updated this blog; my apologies. For those that had been following for some time, since I last posted: I stepped down as Senior Pastor at New Covenant church in Knoxville, I moved to Ankeny, Iowa, started a new ministry with St. Croix hospice as Chaplain. I was chaplain with St. Croix for about 4 1/2 years, then in 2020 I moved back to Stratford to pastor First Baptist church. It was a big change going from chaplain work back to the pastorate.  I must confess, when I first came (back) to Stratford I was ready to pastor again! I love preaching; I love the ministry of being a pastor, and I love interacting with people long-term. (Being a chaplain is great, but you only interact with a family for a week or so, for some a little longer, but there was a constant upheaval of people and it was exhausting at times...) But, one thing that I have noticed since my stroke is that I get my feeling hurt easily. For instance, people leave the church all the tim