A Brief Statement

We move the day after tomorrow.  My allergies are being as wacky as my emotions, must be all the dust we are kicking up while we sort through eight and a half years of accumulated stuff.  I know I promised an update soon, but I’m not really sure what to say right now.  My brain is about as foggy and dazed as ever, and I know that I have some readers who are really close to our current situation and some who aren’t at all; it’s difficult to balance tender issues and a broad audience.  So perhaps I should speak just briefly to both groups.

First, to those of you who are distanced from our “in person” life, who aren’t part of our congregation or fellow LCMS pastors families, and who are truly on the outside looking in…

You all have been so kind and encouraging.  It was certainly uplifting to receive your words in the midst of such a tumultuous time and while very painful and difficult decisions were being made.  At the same time, I also worried how others who are closer to us felt reading such overwhelming positivity about a decision that has undoubtedly been hurtful to them.

As much as we cherish your love and support,  I would ask that right now, if you feel led to pray or encourage anyone, you would send those thoughts and prayers to our beloved congregation and those who have been negatively affected by our need to leave the ministry.  Our family is in a crazy whirlwind of chaos in pretty much every area of our lives right now.  But we have also had time to prepare ourselves for the added burden we would be taking on.  Those we are leaving haven’t had any time to process what’s happening, and they are much more in need of your love and prayers right now.

We aren’t leaving because of anything that anyone here has done.  We love our congregation dearly (and those of you who have been reading for any length of time know that I just don’t say things.  We really do feel that way.)  I have lived in this parsonage now longer than I have lived anywhere else, and I have become more attached to this church family than any other I’ve been a part of.  This group of people is the only congregation Jake has ever been a spiritual father to, and that’s a bond not easily broken.

This congregation is amazing; they’re good people, and they take care of their pastors better than most churches care to do.  They don’t deserve to be left in the lurch like this, and if it were just based on those factors, there’s no way we could possibly leave them.  Please remember them in your prayers and think of them when you leave us public comments about our departure.  It’s not that we are ungrateful for your support, but I just ask that you keep everyone’s feelings in mind during what is a painful transition for everyone involved.

To those of you who are closer in proximity to us and our situation here, please know that we have been praying and crying over this resignation for months.  Not for ourselves, but because we knew we were about to do something that was going to hurt the people we loved.  We looked for so long for a way to resolve our inner struggle that didn’t bring others pain or grief.  And after a long time of praying and seeking counsel from those who were older and wiser and had more experience, it became obvious that we had no other options available.

I know that some of you were offended by my last post.  For that I am sorry, but like everything else in the midst of this resignation, I tried to write that post in the best possible way, and there simply is no getting around the hard parts.  We meticulously thought out every step of this resignation to ease the burden on our congregation and those around us, and despite our best efforts there are still quite a few who believe we didn’t do it the right or best way.  It is probably impossible to leave in a way that’s right for everyone.

And to all those who feel that way, you are quite correct.  We didn’t.  We could have done better.  But please know that any extra grief or distress that was unnecessarily caused we are deeply sorry for, and in no way did we ever intend to create a greater hardship.  Nor were we negligent or self-serving.  We truly tried to make choices that would bring the greatest benefit and the least strain to everyone in our congregation.

All of you will be in our prayers, and know that there will be many more tears on our end as we grieve the loss of this relationship that is unique to a pastor’s family and their church.  We are not simply moving on with our lives and forgetting these last four years.  Being a pastor is much more than just a job, and the gravity of that reality is not lost on us.  This decision was not made lightly, rashly or flippantly.  You all mean more to us than you know.

Comments

  1. Dear Dalas and Jake. I really do understand how difficult your decision to leave has bee. I am praying for you to find the peace and comfort you need to move on. I am praying also for your church family to understand and accept your decision. God will continue to lead you in the direction He wants you to go.Have safe travels to where you are heading and much happiness and God’s Blessings to all of you.

    • dalas.mueller@gmail.com says:

      Thank you Bertha. We still hope to get back and see you one of these days! We miss everyone there too. <3

  2. Dear Dalas, i know you guys have not made this decision lightly & must have gone thru much heartache to arrive at it. i will be praying for you & your family & for acceptance & understanding & peace & blessings for your church community there. With you from afar, always in His Love, Sandra

  3. Praying for you, your husband, your children and also for you church family. It must be so hard on all of you, but mostly for those who don’t understand your decision (yet).

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