What She Said…

If you go back and look at my (Facebook) timeline it is only occasionally that I have much to say. I hope that is because every week I spend lots of hours listening, reflecting and unpacking what I think God wants me to say in a few minutes on Sunday morning to those good people who have made the effort to come listen. My Lindsay, who will celebrate her 22nd Birthday next week, has discovered something every pastor wishes every person that ever asked: “Where is God” would discover….and believe….and hold on to when it just seems like there is nothing else to hold on to. So thank you Lindsay for giving me something to share that you said worth saying today and everyday on Facebook and everywhere else in the world. I love you!
Here is what Lindsay wrote on her Facebook post:

Well THIS is pretty crazy. I know that we live in a society where people are always wanting something more or something better. I struggle with this too, and it’s also been really tough since I don’t have a job right now, and well, I kinda thought that almost 4 months after graduating that I’d already be making my own money in the “real world”. So I was doing my bible study and had turned to Hebrews 12 for that. I stopped doing my bible study and felt that I needed to pray to be content with where I am in my life right now and with what God has given me, and to stop always wanting something else. I glance down and my bible study book was covering my whole bible except for Hebrews 13:5 which is “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’ Real funny God, thanks for always showing me that you know a little bit more than I do about life!! 🙂

Something’s going on here!

In August of 1990, I wrote the first pages of a journal that stuck.  Like many people, I had made numerous attempts at writing my thoughts and feelings and after a week (or less) never wrote again.  But this time I kept writing.  Having something very deep and dear to write about: my wife’s very complicated twin pregnancy, that less than a month from the beginning of my journaling would end with the death of my daughter, Gretchen – before she was born – and the birth and tentative start of my now 20 something year old daughter, Lindsay, has a way of keeping the story going.  I continued to write in my journal faithfully.  I continued to record my story as our third child, Matt, was born and surprised us with raising a son with Down syndrome.

In the fall of 2000, while enrolled at Belmont University in Nashville, to complete my Bachelor degree, I took a class titled: “Telling Stories – Experiencing Life.”  Through the process of writing essays, coloring pictures, telling stories to one another, I realized and confessed aloud that I was a writer.  It didn’t matter if I sold insurance for a living (what I was doing at the time), or serving as a Lutheran pastor (what I had really wanted to do since I was a child…and what I do now), I was born and wired to write.

And so in the spring of 2003 I worked my way out of a 20 year insurance career, took a year of sabbatical and began work on a book.  A year later I took a staff position at my home congregation as Director of Christian Education and Family Life, and in the summer of 2007 began the candidacy process to become a Lutheran pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, being ordained on January 3, 2011.

Needless to say the book took a back seat to all my life and career changes.  The work I have done – most of it nine years ago – has sat under lock and key since then.

A long story in a short version…

I seem to get “messages” in three’s.  That has happened in the last week (I will tell that story later).  It is time to write.  I don’t even think there was such a thing as a blog when I was writing before (at least not one that I could manage).  So here I go.

For those of you who are going with me, I covet your prayers and conversations and comments along the way.  You are free to be honest as long as you are not mean.  I sold insurance for 20 years so, trust me, I’ve heard most anything that could be said about me that might hurt my feelings.  However, until you are paying for what I am selling, I am not obliged just to take it laying down!!

Let the writing begin!

Matt Steinhauer