Thursday, September 05, 2013

The Spirituality Of Moving

Living in an area with lots of military personnel, moving is a fact of life.  Clergy aren’t quite as mobile, but we do our share of relocating too. 

My wife and I will be moving again in about a week to the new church parsonage in Riverside Estates.  The process of moving again helps me understand, just a little, the lives of the military families that are part of our congregation and community. 

For the next few weeks, I’ll be blogging about our move here.  I’ll be sharing tips, mistakes, hopefully some small successes, and exploring the spirituality of moving.  You’re welcome to come along...  

Yesterday, I rented a 16’ truck and picked up a new sofa, recliner and area rug at Costco.  I remember when our entire lives fit inside a 16' truck.  The fact that it doesn't now is a testament of the way our lives together have flowered.  Children. Children's spouses. Grandchildren. Dogs.  So many blessings. 

Sure, some of this accumulation of "stuff" represents the typical postponed decisions.  Even after only a couple of years.   Lots of this stuff is headed for the trash.  Probably should have been there long ago.  Many of my books fall into that category.  I still have my books from college and seminary.  A lifetime ago. 

For a writer, books are companions.  They are relationships, lessons learned, a record of the questions and collective wisdom that has shaped my life.   In the age of ebooks, the time has come my friends... 

Things are coming together in the house.  The congregation has done a great job getting things ready for us.  Looks good…hopeful…with our new rug down, the empty bookcases in the study waiting to hold the books I’m not ready to part with yet.  It becomes possible to imagine a life here.  It begins to take focus and shape. 

The sofas, the chairs, the rugs, the pictures on the walls, the books on the shelves…these are all the silent witnesses to our lives.   I haven't always paid them the attention and respect they were due.  I've mostly taken them for granted.  I realize that as they are taken down one by one, wrapped or sealed in  cardboard boxes.  This is exhausting work.  Slow and painstaking.  Thankfully, my wife shoulders the bulk of this.  Driving the truck, lifting and sweating is the easy part comparatively and  I’m better suited to that.

I believe it's true that a life observed is changed simply by being observed.  These things carried from our old place to our new feel like an extension of ourselves.   A bridge to take us from who we were to who we will become.  They are the immense gratitude, sealed and delivered,  for all that has been.  They are gestures of faith in what is yet to be. 

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