The Center

How do I sum up four years of experiences that were at times so overwhelming, and so enlightening I feel humbled and sorrowful more people couldn't have experienced?

Today, I officially made my iPhone a second priority, didn't answer emails as they came in, and most-assuredly didn't make my way back from Midland, Texas with a car needing three tires and a deep clean to the floorboards. Today, I started a new job.

Digesting my time with MATS (Ministry Auto and Truck Service ... as I told folks more than 75 times on the phone) and how to comprehend all its significance will take time. But, if I were to sum up the 10s of thousands of miles driven, the people met through late night sales calls and in parking lot vehicle swaps, it would be with the word, adventure. When a high school friend told me his brother in law owned and ran a car business from my hometown, where they bought and sold vehicles throughout the US and had amateur drivers do the driving, I didn't waste a minute. My boss (now former, weirdly enough) called me right back and asked: do you want to fly to Houston tomorrow and drive back a truck?

Ecstatic for meaning, and adventure, I of course said yes; made the trip, and now sit reflecting of the hundreds of flights, and bus trips taken; the chilled fingers jumping dead cars in Dartmouth, Mass January mornings, and the heavy sobbing in rural Nebraska when all I had to face was myself, and He who I came to know more and more.

Moving to California wasn't popular, but seemed doable enough to make happen. So, in June, 2011, I packed up a SOLD 2006 Toyota Corolla and drove West, emotionless as I left and unsure if this was the right idea. Right off the bat, I remember Los Angeles having a new vibrancy, yet caustic dullness to it I never expected. I got involved with Young Life in September, and blessed with uncertainty began pitching MATS to people throughout Southern California over coffee and bagels. Meeting wonderful people, centering my week in the Church, and selling cars became my world.

Last week, coupled with the knowledge that things had hit a mild-stagnancy and with an offer to move to Indiana into a role similar to what I left in 2011, decisions had to be made and for a few days I was certain to make my life in California a silent and occasional reflection of a reality that became blurred.

But, luckily my plans did not trump what was presented. And now, today I started a new job working at the Center at Blessed Sacrament Church. The last two weeks have been miraculous in what has been presented, and taken away; further evidence to the sovereignty of a God who, ultimately, loves and takes away. I am excited, and energized to define what I now live and to be an opportunity to socialize I have missed these past few years, to engage in the lives of those who don't seek pity but friendship, and to finally reciprocate the Love God has given in allowing me to fail, while still nurturing, and ultimately keeping me in L.A. a little longer.


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