This season has been the definition of bittersweet. I loved everything about my life in Seattle- my friends, my job, my church, my students, my house, and of course, my city. To leave everything was a so huge I wasn't quite sure what to feel. Because at the same time, I was excited about everything about my new life- new friends, new jobs, new church, new apartment, and a new city to explore. Full of sorrow and joy at the same time.
As I decided to start a new website and blog, it felt only right to begin this season, by ending with the last. I was thinking about all the moments, silly and sacred, sassy and special, that made up my time at Bethany. As I did, Luke 2:51 came to mind- "And Mary treasured up all these things in her heart." That best describes what I am doing these days- treasuring up the memories of an indescribable season of life that in some ways, only I will get to hold on to. I treasure the memories, experiences, and most of all relationships that I made during this wonderful season of life.
I had a beautiful going away celebration at Bethany that moved me to tears. It has been a wonderful 3 years and I cried every tear in my during the blessing in service. That evening, we had a big party that reminded me how deeply known and loved I am by my church family. Everything about the night felt like it was just for me, which I suppose it was. I was overwhelmed and deeply touched by the generous and thoughtful gifts that I was given. I am not just leaving Bethany, I am being sent.
Seattle has shaped my entire adult life. It is where I have learned about racial justice, where I found my voice and courage to stand up for justice, where I developed my call and watched God transform my life. It is where I found the freedom to be who God has called me to be and the courage to step out into the next chapter of life.
Goodbye, Seattle. I love and miss you already.