About 5-6 years ago in Pasadena, my wife and I joined with four of our friends to create a small group we fondly referred to as our “Orchestra.” We would gather together perhaps every third Saturday, check in with each other about our lives, and then settle into “tuning our instruments” — learning to listen to God speak into our hearts. We would select a short passage of Scripture, spend about 20 minutes in quiet, listening, and journaling, and then another 10-15 minutes (each) describing what we were receiving from our time with God.
It was a simple premise, but one of the most life-giving experiences of our time in CA. Today I am missing that small band of fellow-apprentices. So I would like to include here my last journal entry from our Orchestra as a tribute to them and what they have meant to my life.
(Dec. 31, 2011) Isaiah 55:12. “For you shall go out in joy, and be led back in peace.”
Lord, as I go out from this place, it is with great joy and full heart. Knowing you have been with us — You fed us, gave us water, warmed our hearts, and made us one together with You.
We are richer, fuller, more hopeful, more stable, more resilient, more at peace and more in joy — because You have watered this place — this sacred space — with Your love and Word.
And though we end our year, and our formal gathering, it feels not like an ending, but a beginning. The cypress and myrtle are all about (Isa.55) and I hear the mountains and hills in the distance, their song growing louder with each passing day.
My heart is full, and I have been blessed to have been here and shared this time with my friends, my fellow travelers, my confidants. Thank you for giving them to me for this season, in this way, that I might be richer and better — more whole for having shared Your Word together with them.