The kids and I are looking forward to spending time with Kris this summer. He is taking a break from his voluntary job at church until the fall. Kris is the technical arts director and he runs the lightning program. There is no downplaying Kris’s awesomeness when it comes to lights. The way he expresses his creativity through lights, colors and sequence is a gift. It’s not just programming lights on a computer either. He builds these incredible sets on the stage that are used as a backdrop and support for worship/praise and the message that’s being given. He’s constantly striving for bigger and better even it’s not something achievable at the time. For example, he would love to show off his pyro-technic side at Heritage but for the safety of everyone that enters the building, it’s best to keep that on the back burner for now.
We have been a part of Heritage Church for almost eight years. Kris spent a little less than half that time working on sound and has been running the lights for over four years now. Way back when we first started attending Heritage, Kris volunteered to help with the sound. He didn’t really know what he was doing but realized he was good at it, and it became something he loved. He was passionate about it and put all of his time and effort into making the sound of a Sunday service beautiful and pleasing to everyone’s ears. There was always a new challenge or hiccup as our congregation grew because we were a portable church that met in a school gymnasium. Every week volunteers set up and transformed the school into a place where you could worship, be encouraged and hear a great message. Every week volunteers tore down and packed everything up in trailers. After a few years, there was a good team running sound and a need came up for someone to help with the lights. Kris jumped stations and started doing lights. I could see that he loved doing lights even more than sound and he told me that he felt like his passion had shifted and he could see himself doing lights indefinitely.
Looking over the span of how long we’ve been at Heritage and going from meeting in a school to our own building, which used to be a theatre, it’s quite astounding to see how far the lighting program has come; to see how accomplished Kris is with his work. He didn’t go to school for technical arts. No one taught him how to do the sound or lightning. He has taught himself all along the way. I’m so proud of him. Besides the many hours he puts in at Heritage, he also works close to seventy hours a week at his paying job. It’s been tough. We are so thankful that he has a full time paying job; add in his voluntary job at church and we rarely see him let alone get to spend time with him. I miss him and so do the kids. Marriage is the most wonderful and hardest relationship I will ever have. Being a momma is hard too, but even after my kids are grown and out of the house, I will still have this man standing next to me; a man I vowed to spend the rest of my life with. The rest of my life is a long time. So far it has been extraordinary in the best and worst ways.
You know how some people will call it? They will look at your life and have a pretty good idea of where you will be in a year, five years, ten years from now. I think that’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. The most predictable person or couple cannot see the future. The most well thought out plan will encounter bumps. Even the most clearly defined path in your life will have debris somewhere down the road. I would have never imagined my life to be where it’s at right now, not in a million years. My life is not perfect and I will always be the first to admit that I’m a bit eccentric, but I have everything I need. I have my children and my husband whom I will fiercely protect. Our family comes first. That is what we are protecting and trying to ensure right now.
Our life can be so crazy and busy. It moves so fast as we try to juggle our expectations from other people and each other with work, our faith, family and everything else. Over time I noticed that Kris didn’t seem to enjoy his work at the church. He noticed it too. He wasn’t loving it. He lost his passion. Long story short, he was tired and needed to take a break. We love our church family and we love serving. It’s important to find rest though. I see people who never stop to rest. They get burnt out and stop enjoying what they’re doing. They might not even realize that their work isn’t excellent because they’re running on empty. How can we possibly give everything we have towards what we believe if we’re not taking care of ourselves and our family.
Kris took a timeout for most of the summer. He is still going to help and give input with a few things, but he will not be serving weekly or running the lights until the end of August. We believe we are putting God first because we are putting Him first in every area of our lives. We are focusing on our family and each other. This summer is already proving to be awesome and challenging. When you go from passing each other with a hi and bye every day to seeing each other every day, things are going to come up that you have to work out. I don’t relish certain moments and days that we have with each other, but ultimately we will be stronger as we grow together and become better parents and better partners.
*I read this entry to Kris because I wanted to make sure it was okay that I posted since it largely has to do with him. He said it was fine. I feel it’s important to remember times like this and write it down because it’s part of our journey. Amongst all the sibling fights, couch leaping tricks, potty incidents, spontaneous songs, and disastrous chaos brought on by our children, there is a man and woman at the center of it all. We are husband and wife, father and mother, best friends with each other. We don’t always like each other..Wait, let me rephrase that. We don’t always like what we see come out of each other, especially when we’re working something out or growing in character, but we always love each other. We want our children to always see that love, even when it’s difficult.