I can't believe that our five-week sabbatical is over already! This time away from our responsibilities of caring and planning for our congregation has been more restful, more enriching, and more restoring than I had dared to hope. I now have a better perspective on just how close to total burnout Chris and I both were. That noted, I must say that after this month I am more relaxed, centered, healthy and happy than I remember being in years. But the really good news is that I feel we have laid the ground work for both of us to remain on this track of better health and perspective for the foreseeable future.
One of the main highlights of our month for me was seeing United at Team Church '07. That concert was one of those transcendent experiences you remember your whole life. And it wasn't just the concert, it was the time that we got to spend hearing the members of United talk about their music and their heart for worship and justice that made this a memorable experience.
I freely admit that I am a United junkie. I have loved their music since I heard my first United CD, and if I were a twenty-one year old, I think I would just travel the world going to all of their concerts! (In fact, it is quite possible that I have a crush on Joel Houston! He's like a modern day David. He's really tall, he has a ruddy complexion and he's pretty cute to look upon, if a middle-ish-aged preacher's wife may observe. Add in his deeply moving song lyrics, and all I can say is "Ahhh!" I have always had a thing for musicians-Chris was a drummer when we fell in love. I told Chris that if I were a teenaged girl I think I'd have his poster on my wall!) Okay, back to reality now...
I came away from their sessions during the conference deeply impressed with the spiritual maturity of these young men and women-their naked hunger for God and His presence, and their undeniable commitment to seek justice for the poor and downtrodden. There was a passion and a driving purpose in these young people that I have not seen even in career ministers of the gospel! And to hear their hearts and then to go see them in action, using their phenomenal talents for the glory of God and seeing hundreds of youth worshipping with abandon after waiting in line for hours to get in to the venue was truly a life-changing experience.
Not only did I enjoy this from a music and worship standpoint-their example has spurred me on to work on discover what I am passionate about in this world and to find a way to do it! Motherhood and ministry remain the things I care most deeply about, but I also believe that there is a unique purpose within me and over the next few months I intend to search for it. During our sabbatical I was challenged to come up with an action plan of things to do to keep burnout and fatigue from reoccurring once we came back, and this is one of the items on my plan. I plan to spend more time exploring things outside of my normal realm of church and home, such as the great museums and galleries in our metro area, and maybe even take a class or two at the community college. So we'll see what develops from there!
I'm Allison and I am a wife, a mom, and a pastor's wife. I'm trying to add a touch of lovely to my everyday life with decorating, fashion, my family, God's presence or all of the above.