This post from my old blog has been brought to my attention several times within the past couple of weeks so I thought I would repost it for the record. I have only slightly edited it for information (ongoing) that is no longer relevant. For those that don’t know, or didn’t read this on my old blog, the particular night referenced below is one of the most powerful experiences I have had. This post was originally written July 8th, 2013.
On June 19th 2013, during the opening night of the Exodus Freedom Conference, I sat on the front row. Leslie was to my right and Kathy and the Exodus board to my left. All of us were providing each other, and Alan, support as we knew that Alan was making one of the most important keynote speeches of his life. He announced that Exodus is closing.
It was excruciating. The tension, the excitement, the knowledge of what was about to be said … my heart was racing and the tears came and went … to come back again. I had known that night was coming for a while, but there is a difference between knowing and experiencing.
It was quite the profound experience.
You could have heard a pin drop in the room as the audience took in the news. However, if the Internet could make its own social “noise” I think we might have heard a lit fuse expending itself toward a media explosion that happened later that night, and over the next two days.
When I opened my laptop on the front row to publish the announcement to the Exodus blog, I literally hovered over the publish button for about 30 seconds and just wept and wept. This was it, done, fin. I knew this would be jeered and cheered around the world. That did end up being what actually happened. One of my friends close by said, “Go for it.” And as I wiped away the tears, I felt the Lord’s peace, and hit publish.
I know Exodus has had a negative legacy in some ways that we must not ignore, but it also has had a positive legacy for many of us. I love all the good that Exodus has done in my and many of my friends lives. I love all the good relationships I have been honored with over the past 21 years. While I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that closing Exodus is the right thing to do, hitting that publish button, and being present for Alan’s keynote (he did great job in articulating his heart and the board’s decision), is still one of the most important moments I have had so far in life.
As always the Lord has proven true and faithful. I can see His hand preparing Exodus for this moment for over ten years; especially the last two. Some have said we haven’t heard, we can’t have possibly heard, from the Lord. They are entitled to their opinion of course. I am convinced it is His will, and exactly where we are supposed to be.
Since coming back to the office, Alan, Scott, and I began implementing how to close down a myriad of resources, equipment, administrative functions …and more. We are doing our best to do this in an efficient and appropriate order.
Today, as I shut down some online resources, administrative paths that took years to build and maintain, and greatly reduced the main Exodus website, I remembered so many good (important) moments and relationships. And of course I vividly remembered that June 19th, 2013 night.
This is the necessary end of Exodus. I am not feeling any glee over the matter of course, but I am not remorseful either. It is what it is. And because it is of the Lord, it is good. The reason I have peace is that the Lord has provided clear direction for now, and vision for the next adventure. I told a reporter that some people would say this is a bittersweet moment, but I don’t say that. I have no “bitter” and nothing but confidence that we are doing the right thing and headed in the right direction.
Even so, it is important to ponder and document the moments from a personal perspective. Thanks for your friendship, prayers, and support.