The Story of my SoCal Life

Our move is coming very quickly now. Friday Morning I drive up to Portland so I can be there for work on Monday. Yeah so if I didn’t say it before I will be working for Bank of America! Then the following Friday I fly back down here and move the rest of the family and all of our stuff up. So I guess it’s really happening!

It feels weird though. In some ways I feel like I wasn’t done here. Even like I didn’t accomplish anything. Some of Southern California feels like failure. What I came here to do I wonder if I really did. I recently read through a bunch of the blogging I had done when we moved down here. The word that came to mind was: “naive”. Maybe not. Maybe for the moment I was doing what I was supposed to do. At the time I was sure of it. Had I known what the future held I would have thought twice. I would have guarded my heart a little. Maybe I wouldn’t have been so willing to be blind. But we did and we got hurt and bruised and lost a lot in the process.

3 years ago I was packing up a truck with all of our stuff ready to head out on an adventure that had no boundaries. Anything could happen. I was moving my family 1000 miles to help with a church plant. I was excited that I was going to be able to help define worship. We got bogged down though. After 3 months of no job and no place to live we became a little angry. I couldn’t understand why we would have to go through something like that. And then when the work part finally came together and we had a place to live the church we were involved in decided it best that we weren’t involved any longer.

I’d like to say that I’m over that but I’m not. It hurt. Again I couldn’t understand what God was trying to do. In some ways I still don’t. So we pushed on and have been a part of several churches here in SoCal. All of which (except for one) have closed their doors. We helped “bail water” and ultimately had to suck it up and let it drown. My view of church now is distorted and frustrated. I don’t understand it and a large part of me wants nothing to do with it.

So I ran away. I ran to work and just worked as much as I could so I wouldn’t have to think. And if you know me you know this isn’t me! I don’t mind working but I’m not usually the first person on the front line. I like to roll under the radar and go home. I used to like my home life and that was the focus and work was just for money. My job became my god here. I turned there only because I got answers there and I felt like God had quit talking to me. In the process I lost touch with my family. I lost touch with my wife. My kids missed me and then just didn’t care anymore because they kinda forgot who I was. My wife wanted nothing more than to share an evening together where I would just focus on her but I couldn’t or just didn’t. I’ve almost lost it all. In just 3 short years my life seemed to have been turned upside down.

So I’ve decided change is a must. I can not stand here and let this happen to me. And God let it happen but he didn’t do it to me. I had a choice to have faith or to forge it on my own and I choose the latter. So once again I choose faith but not maybe the same way. This time I got a little older and maybe a little wiser to the ways of this world. What our family needs is each other and it became clear that some of that was going to have to be location change. And not only that but a simpler life. A life with less clutter. Simplify. So that’s what we’ve done. We’ve thrown away or sold a good deal of what we moved here with and what we’ve accumulated as we’ve been here. We’re moving to a place where we can breath a little. Where I can make enough money to make ends meet and still have time to regroup and be a family. To have that romantic dinner with my wife. To play with my kids. I need to find out who Stephen is now. I still don’t know how I feel about church. I’m jaded. Maybe that is part of this. But the story is not over. this is not the end that is for sure.

With all of that said. I am not running from here. I’m just walking away from something that was going to be death. I’m going somewhere I know that I can rest. I just need to rest………………..


~ by Stephen Baker on September 19, 2007.

One Response to “The Story of my SoCal Life”

  1. see you next weekend

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