Sharing Our Story
A Road Like No Other
“I was in a big SUV-type vehicle heading out a gravel road. As we drove up a little bit of a rise, I could see that the road was ending. We came to a stop and I remember thinking, ‘Where do we go from here?’ Looking to my left I noticed a foot path. And that was it,” says Joel Warkentin. “That was the entire dream.”
Joel, a part of Leamington United Mennonite Church’s ReLearning Community team, participated in a recent retreat weekend, along with his pastor, David Dyck. “It is not my background to have a lot of emphasis on the Holy Spirit,” says Joel. “Both David and I are cautious about emotion and overt expressions. We came into ReLearning Community telling ourselves that we were going to be open, but still cautious.”
Teams were encouraged to spend time alone in reflection. However, there was an expectation placed on them – they were to come back with a vision. “That’s a lot of pressure, especially with my cautiousness about that whole area!” says Joel. Regardless, he decided to make a good attempt and was trying hard for a few minutes – until the music was turned on to help them focus. He found that he was focussing on the music, and actually fell asleep for a few moments. When he awoke, he realized that he had, in fact, dreamt something.
Joel shared his image with David, and David began to laugh. David too had a similar image earlier that day. David’s image was of driving down a highway and coming to a construction zone. He noticed that while a new road was being constructed, the old road remained open and was still being used. The two visions seemed to align with each other. Both men pondered this.
As they returned to the larger group in Leamington and shared these visions, there was more time to reflect as a team. Is the large SUV the large congregation at Leamington United Mennonite Church? Is it saying that we cannot keep going on the road that we are going? Do we need to find a new path? The fact that the old road was continuing to be used as the new was being constructed, does that mean that even while you are making a new road, the old road needs to keep going?
“David’s vision is so significant for me,” concludes Joel. “The old road has to keep going. We cannot say that it was not ever a good road. It is a good road and still functions well for many people. That road needs to be maintained, sermons need to be delivered, and funerals and weddings still happen. But at the same time, it no longer completely meets the needs and we need to pay attention to the construction of this new road. The two roads need to co-exist.”
ReLearning Community encourages people to pay attention to Kairos moments like these – significant moments where God is speaking to us, or working through us. Leamington United Mennonite continues on their journey with ReLearning Community as they begin their second year.