May 7, 2011

The One with the Bittersweet Announcement

[originally written April 30th, 2011 @ 7:30pm]

Tonight my heart is aching, anxious with anticipation

Twenty-four hours from now, our teens will have received the news that will likely devastate them--Kevin and Melanie are leaving. There is much more to the story than our departure from this town, this home, this church, but I know that is all these students are going to hear. I'm breaking at the thought of being the cause of their pain. Some of them may feel abandoned, forsaken, or rejected. Others may be overwhelmed with anger or filled with sadness. The rest may not know how to feel. 

And knowing the ache our decision will cause goes against my deepest instinct to remove pain. When someone is hurt, something is wrong. That's all there is to it in my black-and-white emotional reality. 

But God has spoken a different message into the depths of my being. Just as He commanded Abram, the Lord God has said to my husband and me, 
Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you.
This portion of Genesis 12 is so poignant, overflowing with man's obedience and God's faithfulness. It must have been anything BUT comfortable to pick up and leave the only land he'd ever known, but Abram "left as the Lord had told him.

We have little comprehension of the Almighty's plan in all of this. But we are doing our best to follow him. How can we teach our students to be eager followers of Christ if we ourselves are unwilling to GO? How can we sing the words of Starfield's song "I Will Go" alongside them and sit here in comfortable disobedience? Is it possible to read the words of Isaiah the prophet when he himself answered the call and not be convicted to do the same? 
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?"
And I said, "Here I am. Send me!" 
This transition will not be easy. In fact it may be painful. But Jesus did not call us to a life of ease. He called us to follow Him. And THAT is what we're doing. 


My outstanding husband, who becomes more and more faithful to the voice of Christ each day, has been called by God into full time ministry. We have been leading the youth group here at MFMC since September 2008, and we shared with the world Kevin's call to ministry back in November 2009. But since then, there has been more leading and a beckoning to go a step further. 


Beginning this August, Kevin will be starting the 4 year Master of Divinity degree at Northeastern Seminary. He is intensely passionate about furthering his knowledge of Scripture and of the doctrines of the Christian faith. He wants to learn Greek and Hebrew and experience the interpretation of the Holy Text. He desires to know Irenaeus and Augustine and Jerome--the fathers of our faith (patristics).   

I am eager to learn alongside him, discuss with him, challenge him, grow with him, support him. And while we are there, we will pursue a lifestyle of ministry--for without an eternal purpose, what are we

We are excited for the journey ahead. 
And brokenhearted to leave all of this behind. Our friends. This home. My glorious kitchen. A church family. Librarians who know our names.
The 25plus teenagers who have wedged their way so deeply into our hearts that they will forever be a part of us

O, God, grant us mercy.



  1. Having had to leave 2 church families to follow my husbands calls I know how difficult it is to leave. Prayers for you during this transition.

  2. Praying for you and excited to see the plans God has for you both!

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  4. Knowing you and Kevin the very short time (2 months) that I have, I can tell you that this news came very heavy on my heart. The impact that you have already had on Gianna's life is amazing and will forever be dear to me. I know over the next couple months, I will see my daughter grow so much more closer to the Lord in and through her talent. In knowing that your talent is what allowed her to start to come out of her shell, will always be a wonderful memory of mine! The teens in your future are so lucky to be getting such a wonderful Youth Minister team such as you and Kevin. The teens you have touched will always have you and the memories they created with you. I look forward to keeping up with you through your blog, your writing is so amazing! Thank you for being a blessing and such a wonderful woman of God. <3 Nik

  5. Sweet Mel and Kevin,
    God never shuts a door without opening a window...
    how true this statement can be for your life!
    We too, are in a position of transition, and I feel your pain dear.
    Great and exciting things are ahead of you both, as He makes the call more clear to you each day.
    I keep telling myself these same things...and I also remind myself that God can only steer a ship that is moving forward...not staying safely at the dock! LOL!
    Full steam ahead Mel & Kevin! Just don't forget to "Release" the ropes from the pier for a safe journey forward!
    Love ya!

  6. I will be praying for you two. Although I am excited that Kevin will be going to seminary, I am also sad for the students who look to you two as their shepherds.

  7. Heavy sigh, I can ditto what Aurie said. You've stated it so well in this post though. Keep your compass set due LORD, and He will make your path straight. You'll be in my thoughts and prayers, Melanie!

  8. That is so exciting girl! I know if will be exciting, and yet bittersweet leaving your precious youth. It's never easy leaving a place where you've invested so much! I know God has great things in store for you two!

  9. I can relate a little bit. Many years ago when we were living in Littleon Colorado, my husband felt like he should apply for some jobs in other states. He accepted one here in Kansas.

    Our three little girls and I were not excited to be moving, leaving our new house, their schools and our friends.

    But it was all in God's plan for us, and now we are all so glad we did move here. And we have been here for 32 years this spring.

    We have been blessed here with son-in-laws and 14 grandkids. (Three are in heaven).

    And we all came to the Lord here and we know this is where we were supposed to be.

    May the Lord bless you and use you for His glory as you follow His lead.


  10. Nothing is sweeter than seeing your children mature and grow madly in love with Jesus. Thank you for all you do for the kingdom of God. It will be so exciting to see how God uses you in New York starting in Aug. Love you. Mom


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