Posted by: ritagone | November 20, 2019

Time To Move On…

I remember in 2002 when Michael retired from the TV business.  It was a major change in our lives because, all of a sudden, he was around

the house.  We went from his being gone during the weekdays from morning till night to his being home — all the time!  I thought I would love having him home all the time.  I was wrong.

Because my life and my schedule stayed the same: I went to Bible studies, had lunch with friends, grocery shopped, etc., etc., etc.  So when he would look at me with doleful eyes and whine and say, “What are you doing for lunch?” I would reply, “I have plans.”  The inference was: “Make your own way.  You’re retired.  Get a life.”  Eventually he did.  He found plenty to do.  There IS life after retirement, no matter how busy and successful your career might have been.  And we adjusted very nicely to this new normal of his being around without a regular job to go to.  In fact, now it’s quite nice having him around all the time.

Now I’m facing a sort of retirement of my own.  At the end of this year, I will step down as Board Chair of Christian Associates/Communitas International, after over 20 years in that role.  This is happening for lots of good reasons, not the least of which is that I’m 75 years old now and slower, with less stamina than what I used to have for international travel, for thinking and working out problems, for dealing with “stuff” on an everyday basis.  It’s time for younger bodies and minds to take over.  I am not, alas, I have discovered, immortal or invincible.  I always said I wanted to leave before they were getting the hook and pulling me off the stage, so the time is now.

And it’s a good time to be leaving: we have a new President, a great guy, who I believe is going to revitalize the organization and take it further and higher than it has ever been before, following God’s leading into new projects and areas of the world and casting new vision.

We have a new, younger slanting board, with much enthusiasm and vitality, eager to bring new perspectives and energy to overseeing the organization.  And a new Board Chair, who has been with Communitas from the point of view of church planting in the south of France to acting as our Head of Recruiting for many years until he stepped into the secular world of business in Austin, Texas.  Now he combines business and ministry savvy and an enthusiasm for the job of leading a board and working closely with the President and other leaders to further what God has planned for this ministry.

Communitas is in my DNA and always will be.  I realize that when you quit a job or retire, your context changes, and the people you spent a lot of time with, talking on the phone, gathering together for meetings, shifts into new and unknown relationships, and that’s what I’m now preparing myself for.  I know it will be sad and bittersweet to not be in constant contact with the people who I have come to love and respect over the last two decades.

But I also know that this is definitely what I should be doing, so I’m trusting God to flesh out this new season in my life with something meaningful and exciting, whether it involves new people or those I already know, new ministries or something I’m already involved in.  Whatever my life entails, I look forward to it with relish, pressing on to what lies ahead but not forgetting for one second the blessings and the richness of relationships and experience that I have had the privilege to enjoy over the last years.

There are few people I know who have been blessed as I have been to be in the role of Board Chair of an organization like Communitas, especially, I might add, few women.  I don’t ever take it lightly. I never will.


Responses

  1. Thank you so much for your time & your service! You’ve been such a blessing in my life. Hearing your voice, hearing your heart, hearing your wisdom and your strength… What a gift you are to many missionaries into this organization. With much love, Tina Henriot

    On Wed, Nov 20, 2019 at 7:25 AM Home // Rita’s Ramblings wrote:

    > ritagone posted: “I remember in 2002 when Michael retired from the TV > business. It was a major change in our lives because, all of a sudden, he > was around the house. We went from his being gone during the weekdays from > morning till night to his being home — all the ” >

    • Thank you so much, Tina. That means more than you will ever know. You’re one of the people I mention in the post who have changed my life and my heart forever.

  2. I just read last night that God doesn’t need us to be heroes, but needs us to be faithful. When I think of a faithful person you are one of the first people that comes to mind. I always told people when I led CA that if I could recruit a Board full of “Rita’s” there would be no stopping us. Well done, friend! You have served well. Here’s to what our faithful Father has for you next!

  3. If you are ever in Bolton/Manchester come and stay with us. We would love to see you and meet your husband as well xx

  4. I’ve always said I want to be like Rita when I grow up. Still do! 🙂 Thank you for the marvelous example of how to never stop growing, learning, and trying new things. I love knowing about your adventures and look forward to many more years of learning from you as you capture and explore new experiences post-Board leadership. Thank you so much for the way you served my husband with your gentleness, wisdom, generosity of time and attention, and support over the years. You are truly loved by the whole Callison family!


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