the Lord gives and the Lord takes away…
I’ve written this post 100 different ways in my mind, and I can’t seem to grasp the best way to do it.
Every time I sit down to write, I struggle.
But I want share anyway, so please forgive my lack of eloquence.
This morning, all I could think of is the verse in Job 1 that says …the Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.
I’m going to go with that theme as I try to explain what is happening in our world.
In 2018, we saw God’s hand in so many tangible ways. It was a beautiful sight to behold and it was easy to be full of praise and thanks for his handiwork. We are so thankful for the gifts he showered abundantly on us, and for all the ways he blessed our family.
Have you ever had an “and then…” moment? As in, “Everything was going great and then…”
A month ago, we had an and then.
And then something came out of nowhere and knocked us over.
For the last four weeks, we have sought the Lord with all that we have: praying, reading scripture, fasting and listening for his direction. (I have cried. A lot).
I don’t fully understand what happened, and I suppose I never will. And that’s ok because God knows and I trust him.
I’m not sure even what to share, because I want to honor all of the parties involved.
So I will simply say this…
For numerous reasons, Ben stepped down yesterday as the head football coach at Blaine.
As an explanation, here is an excerpt of what he said to his players:
This is one of the hardest things that I have ever done. I have no desire to leave, and this is not what I want to do, but I think it is the right thing to do. Hopefully, one of the life lessons that you will learn is that often the right thing to do is not easy, popular, or even what you WANT.
As we have moved into the offseason, it has become clear that my vision for this team does not match with the rest of the staff and administration. This is not MY team. This team, this tradition, is bigger than me. I have the deepest appreciation for the opportunity I was given to work with you. I am beyond blessed to have been allowed to be a part of the Bengal family, and I have too much respect for the staff and administration to continue down my own path. They deserve to have a head coach that has the same vision as they do.
The head coaching job at Blaine is a HUGE commitment. I have always held to the belief that priorities need to be FAITH, FAMILY, and then FOOTBALL. I firmly believe that family needs to come before football, and I cannot justify rearranging my priorities so that my own family takes a back seat to football. I don’t believe that is how a man is supposed to live.
Throughout my short tenure here I have tried to communicate to you what I believed was my one job… “To love you”. I hope that you feel loved. I hope you know that although I am no longer the head coach, I still love you guys, and will support you in whatever way I can. Blaine is a special place and one person leaving will not ruin the incredible tradition and culture that has been built here over the decades. I am blessed to have been surrounded by such incredible young men, and I will continue to be your biggest fan. Once a Bengal, ALWAYS a Bengal.
And with that, Ben’s short tenure with Blaine football was done.
Sometimes, our plan is not the same as God’s plan.
This is one of those times.
The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away, but we will continue to bless his name.
We are overwhelmingly thankful for our time as Bengals, mostly because of the incredible players and their families. The Blaine football community is special and we were blessed to be a part of it.
As for the future, we don’t know what it holds, but we do know who holds it.
Therefore, we will continue to trust and praise God because he is GOOD.
He is our rock, and he will hold us securely in the midst of this storm.
We will continue to chase after him with reckless abandon, because that is our calling.
We will proudly proclaim that when all else fails, our God never does.
He alone is worthy of all the glory, all of the honor and all of the praise.
Yesterday, today and tomorrow.
Dear Friends, I honestly don’t know know how Ben and I would have walked this road if we didn’t have the strength of God filling us every day. He has faithfully carried us with his strong right hand and sheltered us in his wings. His promises have been our armor and protection. We praised him from the mountain and we are praising him from the valley.
I don’t know where you are on the journey of life. Maybe you are standing atop the mountain. Maybe you are walking low in the valley. Maybe you are climbing up but getting weary. Maybe you are having an “and then” moment. No matter where you are, you don’t have to do this life on your own. God’s love is available to you, if only you ask him. He is waiting with open arms to carry you, sustain you, and fill you. His love is boundless, his strength is endless, his goodness is limitless, and he is all you need to endure. On the good days and bad days, he will be with you. If you put your trust in him, he will be your joy in the victories and your anchor in the storms. No matter what comes, he will hold you firmly in his grip.
You need only to ask.
The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away, blessed be his name.
As always, I love hearing from you. Comment below or send me a message and I will get on my knees for you. Let’s do this faith journey together.
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