“I’ll spread my wings | And I’ll learn how to fly | Though it’s not easy to tell you goodbye | I gotta take a risk, take a chance, make a change | And breakaway | Out of the darkness and into the sun | But I won’t forget the place I come from | I gotta take a risk, take a chance, make a change | And breakaway”
– Lyrics from “Breakaway”, as sung by Kelly Clarkson –
In August I posted a meme that said, “And suddenly you just know it’s time to start something new and trust in the magic of beginnings.” You see, just a day prior my attention was drawn to a job posting for Mission Center President of the Rocky Mountain Mission Center. It was now the first night of the Adult Reunion and I was having a sleepless night thinking about a potential job change and what that might mean for me, if I decided to send my letter of interest and was offered the position. Not being able to sleep, I opened my phone and the very first post I see is that meme. Oh, did it hit me! It was my first confirmation that I should send in my letter of interest for the position. 10 days later, I would. The funny thing is that after I shared the meme, a friend said that it appeared as if a work change must be coming. HOW COULD THEY KNOW!? Haha.
Now let’s go back. In the summer of 2011, I was let known that a half-time Director of Youth Camping position was being created in the Greater Pacific Northwest USA Mission Center. I expressed my interest and started working as an employed minister with Community of Christ in January 2012. A year later that increased to ¾ time with more responsibilities added. Then in September 2015, my time was increased to full time.
It has been a deep joy to serve the GPNW USA Mission Center but a little over a year ago, I sensed that it was time to begin preparing for a change in my ministry. I wasn’t sure what, but I sensed that I needed to be open to the ways in which the Holy Spirit might be moving in my life. This past summer had me experiencing several things that signaled a change. I found myself engaging in conversations that had me thinking about my future. I also was invited to preach at Spectacular, our Community of Christ Youth Camp at Graceland University. That was an amazing experience that caused me to reflect on my ministry and where the focus should be. So, after over a year of being open to what may be shifting in my life, I believe that the Holy Spirit was preparing me for this change.
As a local boy, I have been so blessed to spend the first 37 years of my life here in the Pacific Northwest. While serving the GPNW USA Mission Center, I have greatly benefited by serving under the leadership of Kathy Sharp, Mike Bessonette, and Kim Naten. I take what I have learned from each of them as I transition into the role of Mission Center President. I have also been fortunate to have many co-workers, friends, and companions on the journey who have helped shape me into the minister I am today. It is with that that I now say, it is time for me to “take a risk, take a chance, make a change, and breakaway.”