Now What?

The door closed and for the first time we were alone – just the three of us. Gone were the doctors, nurses, family and friends. A new mom, a new dad and, most importantly, a new baby. Now what?!

I distinctly remember this moment. I remember feeling a great deal of exhaustion and a sense of love and vulnerability. After “months in the making” and an almost overwhelming feeling of anticipation, here we were. Now what?!

While the specifics of this life-changing moment were unquestionably new territory, the feeling of arriving at a place of “now what” was not. After the wake for my father ended and our house cleared I remember sitting with my brothers pondering, now what?! As I pulled out of the driveway from my childhood home, car filled to capacity with my belongings, I was feeling a great sense of enthusiasm for my new independence but also some anxiety, now what?! Enjoying a beautiful fall day raking leaves with my family the ECMN Standing Committee President called to inform me I was elected Bishop – NOW WHAT?!

We have all just endured what is believed to be the most contentious campaign season in years. By the close of today it is very likely that we will have a new President. The decision of who is elected will bring great joy to some and will frustrate, if not anger, others. The question for all of us is, now what?!

All these “now what” times of my life have taught me a little perspective.

First of all, regardless of the situation, for good or for ill, my faith reminds me to be hopeful in all situations.

Secondly, I have a choice as to how I will respond to the situation – I am not powerless. I have been gifted with a heart, mind and soul to embrace the place I find myself.

And finally, to always ask myself the question, what is God up to in this situation and how is God inviting me to use my gifts?

Tomorrow, regardless of the outcome of the election, I invite you to prayerfully ponder: what is God up to, how can my gifts be used, how can I live as a faithfully hopeful person?  And then, Now what?! – The choice is ours.

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