There will be an agreement in whatever variety of actions,
so they be each honest and natural in their hour.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
What would you say to the person you were five years ago? What will you say to the person you’ll be in five years?
Five years ago I was working fulltime for a church in Corona as the youth pastor and associate pastor. At the time I felt like the culmination of lots of hard work and prayer was being blessed. I had worked hard to build credibility. I had worked at a large church with an enormous youth group giving me the experience to grow a youth group. I went to seminary and received a Masters in Christian Education with an emphasis in youth ministry. After three years of ministry with this youth group in Corona, we were experiencing numerical and spiritual growth. Every year more and more junior high and high school students and their parents called our church home. It was a very exciting time!
Four years ago that vocation was no longer a reality.
What would I say to myself 5 years ago?
Stay true to who you are. Do not cut corners. Give yourself fully to the work you have been called to. Never stop!
Be prepared for change, just because things are going great does not mean that rugs can’t be pulled out from underneath you.
Don’t give up, even though it hurts when unexpected change happens. It is not the end of the world. Good things can still, and probably will, happen.
I am loved. Do not lose track of those people who love you.
Be prepared to set new goals and reevaluate your old goals.
Expect the unexpected. You might end up doing something unexpected.
Work hard. Keep your eyes open.
What would I say to myself 5 years from now?
I think in retrospect of everything I have learned these past 4 years I would tell myself the same things I told myself 5 years ago. We are placed in situations that we may have absolutely no control of. But that does not mean that we cease to exist because the situations are ugly and hurtful. But we have a control on how we dust ourselves off.
We decide to work hard and keep our eyes open to new opportunities around us. Something unexpected can happen and we need to be ready to embrace the unexpected. We need to check our goals, because goals are what motivate us into action. We will always be loved. And when change happens, and it will, we are not going to give up. It is not the end of world, rather as we know from our past experiences, it is time for another new beginning.