(May 25th, 2015: Flying ATL to LAX to start my new job at Kenco Logistics.)I'm currently sipping Sprite and listening to “Rain” by Blackmill, 30,000ft above Earth in a large metal object that is soaring 550mph through the air in the direction of the City of Angels (how the heck is flying casual?). For the first time in a long time I'm leaving Lookout Mountain, the 2,388ft hill that I call home. I'm filled with emotion as my head rings with the words of Bilbo Baggins from The Return of the King: "I think I'm quite ready for another adventure!" Indeed, I think I am quite ready for another adventure, yet acute nostalgia occupies my mind and body. The dialectical dynamic that accompanies this category of cultural climate change causes a unique intrapersonal dialogue to commence. I’m confronted by the time/space reality of human beings: like it or not, we are constantly stepping away from the past towards the future. In our perception, the present is both impossible to hold on to and impossible to escape. We are subject to the laws of nature, but there is significant space for us to move within them. Each moment is an intersection involving opportunity cost. Saying “yes” to one thing entails saying “no” to another thing and “what if” questions ominously linger at these intersections, eager to attach the weight of doubt to the decisions of uncertain travelers. Even so, the momentum of life continues to propel us forward and as we put one foot in front of the other, we learn who we are, why we are, where we came from, where we are going, what to hold on to and what to let go of.
Even when we are “still”, the earth is rotating at a speed of 1000mph and is orbiting the sun at 67,000mph, not the mention the various movements of our solar system, the Milky Way Galaxy, the Local Group, the Local Supercluster, the Observable Universe and the Unobservable Universe. WHAT A DANCE WE ARE IN!!!
(I digress…I’ll save the full cosmic tangent for another post.)
Anyways, we have to let go of what has been in lieu of what will be, forgoing, but not forgetting, the known in pursuit of the unknown. As I wrestle with this dilemma, I realize that it’s impossible to rationalize the mysterious tension that gobbles my gut, so I’m choosing to rely on faith rather than logic (not that the two are necessarily at odds).
The truth is that I love Chattanooga deeply. It is the scenic city where the majority of my family, friends and memories reside. It is the organic, fertile soil that the Farmer planted me in. It is where my roots have grown deep and I have sprouted up. It is green and flourishing and a river runs through it. A large part of me wants to stay, but the soft, persistent voice that I hear in moments of quiet solitude urges me to go. It has convinced me that a harvest is imminent, that there is more land to farm, that it’s necessary for me to vacate the plot that I have inhabited in order for it to be plowed and repurposed, that it’s necessary for me to inhabit a new soil with new nutrients in order to keep thriving. In this way, the inner voice has led me to believe that this transplantation process, which involves crazy cross-pollination, will enable me to further realize my potential.
All this analogical talk to say, the Lord has called me to a new space for this next season of life and I’m freely choosing to follow His irresistible voice (by the way, I love that paradox).
In this cross-country transition, I am comforted to know that my soul mate, Nina, will be with me. I have been blessed and inspired by her vision for this move and by her willingness to follow the King’s call to act in Los Angeles. She is an incredible woman and it’s been exciting to see the light in her eyes as she prepares for this adventure. Ultimately, I am comforted by the knowledge that Jesus is our creator, sustainer and redeemer, and He is with us always.
The Lord is calling us to do the work of His Kingdom in LA and He has been faithfully preparing us for this work. Our time in Chattanooga, especially the past four years at Covenant College, has taught and equipped us to do this work. Through the investment of many wonderful people, we have established a firm foundation as a family and are now ready to build upon it.
My heart is filled with profound gratitude as I reflect on my 24 years of life. I have been given all the important things in life and with this comes the responsibility, or as my mom says, "the ability to respond," by being a good steward. To me, “good stewardship” entails using one’s gifts to make love manifest. I want to learn what this stewardship looks like in the little moments of routine day-to-day life because I believe it brings God pleasure and makes me resonate as a personal (in my dad's words: “Hudson qua Hudson”).
Towards this end I go,
Sojourning westward towards the sunshine and the sea,
In the security of my Almighty Father's sovereignty.
California, it’s time to party, SMEEG STYLE!