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sabbatical (of sorts) December 14, 2008

Posted by peterong in Reflections.

I fighting a cold and getting out of bed with certain aches and pains. it has slowed me down and as usual, it frees me to understand that there are limits and boundaries of what I am to do. Yet, I am compelled to write and to get these thoughts on and it reminds me of the days when I wrote more when I was living in Syracuse (when demands of ministry were less and the blog world were a new and exciting way for my soul to find nourishment from the wilderness of Syracuse). 

It was a sabbatical time for me; those two years in Syracuse and I as sit in my bathrobe, with a cup of green tea, I reflect on this past year and returning to New York City has been such an enriching time. For me to reconnect and yet remember the humility of just being present in the lives of others. To hear people just wrestling through faith and finding comfort that I am not a lone doubter of this experiment of worship. 

As I write this paragraph, my little son is grunting and making “body music” my thoughts return to him and how I want words to be part of his discipleship. For me to chronicle some of my journeys for him to know that this encounter with the cross is explicitly violent and yet, it is transformed into something so glorious. That atones us. That restores us. I want him to recognize that the cross is not to be censored or sanitized but to enter into the brutality so that he can know the depth of love that comes from it. So I pray. 

I know that this blog has been an oasis of sorts for others and for some others it is just another blog among thousands/millions. But I have this corner that exposure has been somewhat assured that people are moved by it. but I write with a heaviness and responsibility that I am to maintain it. To write so that God can be reflected in this journey. I have found myself more and more regularly returning to orthodoxy and how much more I trust it. Seminary has taught me the paradigm of orthodoxy as a groundwork of engagement in a new generation who needs to understand the message of the cross. We are all born with a theology, the question is which one is it? 

I miss this place. of creating words. of jaunting through the world where people who are becoming fellow pilgrims. I have met so many good people through it and I miss the diversity, the passion and the distinct approach towards faith. I miss it but I also found refuge from it, from the constant insecurity of my blog stats, my feedback, my referrers, etc. I just want to write because my heart is full and it overflows into words. I do miss the people. from the atheist who discovered with me a gospel that is so close to being beautiful to her. to the seattle pastor who continues to stretch people towards encounter out call to those who are poor, to the asian american brother who I find we are living in parallels of having a child and going to seminary, to the teenager who thought that pro choice is really having a choice and her choosing to have her child adopted, to the young man who lost his faith in the Asian American church and found that there were places in his life that was crying out for freedom and to the one woman who lost her child to suicide who is slowly stumbling back into faith. 

this is my story unfolding and with each word, I pray that I remain in worship.



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