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Letting Go

“There are only two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children. One of these is roots, the other, wings.” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Like many of you, my youth and young adulthood seemed at times like a journey through a series of transitions, each involving a process of repeatedly letting go of the old and embracing the unexplored; new schools, new classmates, new workplaces, new homes, new geographies, and most importantly, new relationships. In my younger days, it always seemed like the sense of eager anticipation for the next thing easily overwhelmed any feelings of loss for the road not taken, for relationships not pursued, or feelings of loss and guilt over parents and family left behind to wait and wonder if I could make it in whatever my next new world was going to be.

My perspective is different now, now I have been to that place my parents were when they watched me drive away to that far away school for the first time, or bid farewell as I boarded a flight to launch a new career in a totally new part of the country. Emotionally, I have been in all those same places my parents dwelled in so many decades ago. Sometimes I wished that I could return to some of those parting moments, not that I would have chosen a different path, but that surely I could be better at empathizing with them and sharing their feelings. It has been said by others that one of the hardest things for a parent to do is to let go, and surely those bittersweet feelings have resonated in my bones many times over the years. Yet each time, I knew in my heart that this is how it had to be, that life within healthy family relationships sometimes means letting go.

Who is to say what it is that truly nurtured the nascent faith of a young Ken Crews, perhaps only Jesus Christ can really answer that question. What I think I can say for sure is that for many in the First Pres Valpo community, Ken was more than a pastor, and I think we were more than just another ministry to Ken and his family. Indeed, as he said a couple of weeks ago in the closing comments of his sermon, “in our hearts, you will always be our Church Family.” Later, he concluded, “Our family goes confidently into this new voyage because of our time together here as church family. The ministry we have done here together sets a firm foundation for us to step into the future”.

So indeed Ken, Heather, Owen, and Evelyn, go confidently into your new ministry and “reveal the face of Christ in the storm,” go with the love, support, and strong roots of your church family here at First Pres Valpo.


Jerry Kahrs

1 Comment

Aug 27, 2023

Well said. God Bless.

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