Today the pastor who will be serving as the interim at my soon-to-be-former-church came to preach a sermon. He won't be "official" until after I am gone, but this gave folks a chance to hear and meet him before I am gone.
I was snowed in at my daughter's house...boo! So I didn't show up till he had started the sermon. But the part I heard was great....a sweeping (Old and New Testaments) look at God's amazing grace. One line that I recall is, "We are not seeking victory. We live and move in the victory that God's love provides."
Afterwards I gave him and his wife a quick tour of the church building. And he said, "I was so happy to see all the young people! And there is a good feeling here, a good spirit...these are good folks here."
Yep. I am proud of my little flock. Last year at this time I could not say that. I rejoice that I could say with total honesty, "Yes. We have come through some deep waters, but they are ready for what comes next." I believe it is true. Thanks be to God.
I was comfortable most of the service, though it did feel strange to be sitting in a chair near the back. (We came in late, remember.) Only at one moment did I feel the sadness and finality of that. A wave of grief washed over me, but it was soon gone.