The Journey Thoughts

October 28, 2016

Today is the last day of my secular role as a clinical provider PA.
Although I only work one day a week, the time has come to leave the position
that I have enjoyed throughout my life, and particularly full time over the
last ten years.  It's a sad note for me, for part of me does not want to let
go, yet another part is excited about what the next part of my journey will
be like. People keep asking me what I will do now, but being a full time
pastor will always be my first love, and a role that I can immerse myself in
even further.  When I think of stopping this part of my life that I have
enjoyed so much, there is not too much hesitation because the words of Paul
come to mind when he talks about his goal.  He says, "Not that I have
already reached the goal or am already fully mature, but I make every effort
to take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by Christ Jesus.
Brothers, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I
do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, I
pursue as my goal the prize promised by God's heavenly call in Christ Jesus.
Therefore , all who are mature should think this way. And if you think
differently about anything, God will reveal this also to you." Philippians
3:12-15 When put in this perspective, I am more excited about what the Lord
has for me now. I know that I can never be a person who retires from all
work, for I have to work. Many of my retired friends say they are busier
after retirement than they were when working.  But I know that in ministry,
now that I will give my whole heart to it, it will become a part of me, just
as medicine has been a part of me for the past forty years.  I know there is
no retirement with God, and that I must do the work of Him who sent me. I
know that He desires more of me, and more of you.   Honestly I don't even
feel like this is retirement, because I am still working every week, but now
my attention will not have to rest with my weekly concern over those I have
taken care of over the last years. Do I still care? You bet I do, yet I care
for their souls. I care that some are facing end of life situations, and
have not reconciled themselves with the Lord.  I care about every one that I
have every taken care of physically, for their spirituality  For I know that
in the long run, we can have great physical health, but if we are on the
road to destruction - hell, then does it really matter what our physical
health is all about?  When I think about it, I realize there is a lot in
common with Spiritual nurturing and caring for one's physical being.  Both
try to get a person to enjoy the life that exists within them, but keeping
someone healthy will not ensure them a spot in eternity.   So I will
dedicate all my time to the spiritual nurturing of those I have a
responsibility over, to shepherd and care for.  Even though He was talking
to Peter, Jesus asked: "Do you love me?"  And I say yes!  And I can hear Him
say, Feed my sheep, take care of my sheep.  This is a responsibility I do
not take lightly and I pray that one day I will be able to realize that not
one of those, from the local sheep pen were lost, but all had come to hear
the voice of the true Shepherd -Jesus, who calls us all by name, and when we
hear the voice, we automatically respond, for we love to hear the voice of
Lord, who loves us so much.   So whatever your journey is, whether you are
just starting one, or have been on the road for a long time, and still feel
like you have a long way to go, remember, the joy is in the journey.  When
we reach our forever home, we will have realized that all along the path, we
have been getting glimpses of heaven, on the road less taken.  So I will not
look back and think about whether I took the right trail or not, because I
know that I am on the right path, for I see the Son light shining in front
of me, as I continue my journey.

Pastor Andy

Heavenly Father, I thank you for giving me a love for caring for others.  I
thank You Lord, for being so close to me these last few years, and now Lord,
here am I, so I am fully vested in You, and desire to do whatever Your will
is for the rest of my life.   I pray that You will open my heart even more
to the spiritual needs of those around me, and that I may speak Your words
of comfort and peace.  I pray even now for these I write, to include them,
lifted to You, for Your healing and comforting hand.  So, in obedience, I
lift to You: The Markle family, Travis, Virginia, Eric, Eva, Max, Rita, Don,
Dwight, Pastor Berkey, Nancy, June, JT, Candace, Meredith, Carolyn, Mike S.,
Ramona, Loren, Becky, Judy, Ben, the Young family, Robby, Kathy, Terri,
Becky, Montella, Charlie, Kim, Nada, Angie, Isabel, Terry and his dad, Tim
and his mom, Shelly and her mom, Pam and her son, Kelly and her son, Richard
and his dad, Julissa and her friend, Ellen's friend, Kristena, Abby,
Vanessa, Malachi, Corbin, Ryan, Olivia, Jeremiah, Joanna, Tom, Evelyn, Joy,
Ruth, Ada, JV, BJ, Ida, Betty H., Briggs church, Jackie Ann, Tonia, Todd,
Liam, Aiden, Alan, Fisher, Tuly, Betsy, Michelle, Trevor, Maria, Choya,
Alex, Ken, Eric, Sandy, Andrea, Shannon, Robert, Pat, Ryan, Tyson, Wendy,
Joyce, Betty, Gus, Lisa, Alice, David, Phyllis, Devon, Cindy, Marliana,
Cynthia, Berry, Johnny, Annette, Kim, Gary, Gavin, Shawn, Laurie, Heather,
Codi, Ron, Deane, Dan, Rheba, Pam, Mike, Austin, Harriet, Fred, Dotty,
James, Scott, April, Craig, Hunter, Betty, Asher, Lynette, Kathy, Jennifer,
Patrick, Abe, Trent, Garret, Mayeaux, Ben, Jason, Ashley, Marc, Macy, Jade,
Bob, Tracy, Abraham, Elijah, Japheth, Matt, Liz, Matt, Bethany, Mike, Megan,
Jeff, Laura, Carmello, Kaitlyn, Tim, Michelle, Mike, Terri, and Sue, Sharon,
Marie. I pray for Your guidance to mark our path, as we journey this day in
Jesus name. Amen.

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