Tuesday, January 09, 2007

From Inside The Whirlwind

I knew when I began this journey of re-entering the dating scene that I would be under great scrutiny. And I knew that for many the reaction would be, "That's too fast!" Why did I know this? Because sadly enough I had been on the other end. In times past I've watched on as someone has lost a spouse and then remarried within a short amount of time. I always thought it rather weird...until it happened to me. Though I never verbalized my thoughts, I have to say that I'm ashamed at how I rushed to judge someone before ever walking in their shoes.

For those who read my blog, I can't even begin to articulate the journey my heart has been dragged through over the last 11 months. The early pain and despair is unlike anything I've ever experienced. Yet on the other hand, it's impossible to describe the peace that I have; the peace that passes all understanding. To have loved someone with such intensity and then to be forced to do life without them is beyond difficult. But I can honestly say that I'm at peace with what has happened. Do I understand? No. Is this the way I way I dreamed it would go down? Certainly not. But I've come to this place in my life where I realize Amy is gone and she's never coming back. I know where she is and I plan on partying with her some day in glory. But for now, I know I must move forward.

All that being said, and considering where I've come from, I couldn't be happier. Jennifer has been so open to hearing about Amy. She wants to know about her. In fact, just last weekend we watched the slideshow from Amy's funeral...together. I told stories. She asked questions. It was so weird but so incredible healthy. Jennifer has been so gracious in that regards.

For all those who are concerned about my relationship and my future, please know that I have sought the Lord with all that I have. This week I spent some time re-reading some of my journal entries from 2006 and I was reminded (and relieved I might add) at how often I laid this entire situation before my God. I continue to believe Job 42:12.

To those who have encouraged me, both in person and via my blog, thank you. You will never know how much that means.

This journey has been so difficult. When I lost Amy, I knew I had everyone's support. I know today that not everyone is in my camp and that is tough to swallow. This whole process has served to remind me that I play to the audience of One. May desire is that he be pleased. If He is...I can handle the opposition.


Lonnie said...

Well said my friend!!!

gretchenhs said...

I know I had a hard time when my grandfather moved on so quickly after my grandmother passed away. (I was really close to them) After many years of being upset about it all, it finally dawned on me that some people just can’t do life without a companion, it's not in their makeup (so-to-speak). So as long as Chad is keeping God and Emrie in his thoughts before making decisions, I’m going to just trust he’s doing it correctly.
It’s going to be very hard on a lot of people to watch him move on though, because Amy grew up there and so many people watched her grow and become a wonderful woman, wife, and mother.
I’ve been praying for the whole church as a whole and I just know that everything will be alright with God leading Chad and the others at Antioch.
I wish I could be there for you Chad, but know that Steve and I are praying for you and thinking of you and rooting for you to find happiness. Give Emrie a kiss for us.

Kim said...

I usually don't comment on the blogs, but I am a faithful reader. You are in our prayers, as well as all the family, and again we support you 100 percent!!!

Anonymous said...

Chad we also are 100% behind you.
We are praying for you and the family,and Jennifer. We also are keeping Antioch in our prayers.
your brother in Christ.

Anonymous said...

I was in California when I heard the news of Amy's passing. Though I didn't know her personally it is evident that she was beloved in so many ways by so many people. I have believed for a very long time that life must be lived without regret. It is a little thing called God's grace. But for the grace of God go I (we).

Soon after I returned from California, it was placed in my spirit to pray for the heart and mind of others to be open and responsive in a positive as well as supportive manner when it came time for you to add dating to your repetoire as pastor and a man. This is what polite society refers to as "a delicate situation".

Sometimes we forget that before, during, and after your services not only are you God's annointed teacher, but you are a huMAN.

This afternoon I happened to have a few spare minutes, as we all are aware these are precious and at times to far and few between. To read your thoughts so open, so honest, so pure and wise is just awesome. You are truley blessed. And that we and those to come have been given the opportunity to learn from a shepherd such as yourself is indeed a true manifestion of God's grace on us all.

Thank You,

Sheila said...

You always have a way of putting your thoughts together! You're an amazing person, and Emrie and Jennifer are lucky! So is Antioch, and I hope they realize it. There is a fella that comes in the store every morning and one of the things he says is "If you mind your own business, then you won't be mindin' mine" (however, he doesn't have a blog :o) ) We should spend much more time building people up, supporting them and being a good friend and much less time tearing people down. Words hurt. Evan has often commented on the saying "Sticks and Stones..." and how false that really is. I think it's time for all "Christians" to be kinder. This world is tough enough without being judged by people who don't have a clue and folks who haven't walked in your shoes. Remember when you have one finger pointing out, three are pointing right back at you.
Stay strong, He's forever faithful!

Anonymous said...

untill negative people walk in your shoes...Good Luck and God Bless

preacher darrel said...

Playing to an audience of One is really the only way to survive in our business. I promise you when do that like you do there will be hundreds of supporters.

No one can possible know what you feel even if they have been through something similar because every situation is different. God is guiding you and that is what matters.


Anonymous said...

Chris Jones says:


If I have not said that I am 100% in favor of you embracing Jennifer as a blessing from God, then I want to say that I am 100% in favor of you enjoying the relationship that God has lead you to with Jennifer. I will be praying for all those invovled this weekend.

Anonymous said...

If everyone now knows about Jennifer, we may have to have 3 services on Sunday :) or maybe just one :(...but I will be there know matter which way the door swings...shes one lucky girl! Couldnt have met a nicer guy..and cuter little girl...God Bless

drmacab97 said...

Chad, you have our utmost respect. I read your recent blog out loud to David & we both agree it is so very evident that you are a man of God who is seeking His will for your life and Emrie's. We commend you for standing up to the opposition and for being so bold to share what you are thinking, feeling and praying. Stay strong, it's easy to be critical when you're 'anonymous.' :) God is blessing you and guiding you through this season in your life as He has ALL seasons. We appreciate your heart. Keep following His lead. :) David, Mary & Cara Bondurant
(Mary Manges) :)