The Safety and Danger of Obedience

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Have you ever had to relocate quickly?  I suspect some here have had to do so.  I remember a rapid relocation my family had.  It was in the early 90’s and we had a parsonage full of little children.  I received one of those calls that come with the territory of being in our wonderful ministerial appointive system.  My superintendent called me into his office in Advent and let me know that the Bishop and the Cabinet felt I could best serve the greater church by moving from Asheville to Charlotte.  Here’s the clincher:  they wanted us to pack without our children knowing it and have them end the half year at school and start a new year in a new place!  I believe the entire cabinet at that time were all men who had already raised their children.  We engaged in some dialogue with them and eventually they relented, letting us tell the church and children before Christmas, thus having a proper goodbye.  Some of you have probably been in situations like that in your careers.  For instance, I think of my oldest daughter Carrie and her husband Joey.  Joey returned from Afghanistan in early fall and a couple of months ago, to our delight, was ordered to a new position here in North Carolina.  Initially, we thought they’d be here in March, but we were pleasantly surprised to learn orders have changed and now their movers are coming this Thursday and moving them this Friday!  They are moving much more quickly than they imagined or we could have hoped for!

But none of our family’s relocations and likely most of the quick relocations in your lives happened under the circumstances that marked the dislocation of the Holy Family.