We're Moving

Well, Reuben is blogging, so you know it must be important.

Let me first start off by acknowledging my deep love for our community here in Atlanta and Athens.  We have made some lasting friendships, walked through some tough times, and celebrated events that we thought would never happen!  Atlanta has been very good to us, and we are grateful.

It is with great excitement to announce that Hayley and I are moving.  We began praying about it over Christmas break and truly felt like this was what we were supposed to do.  I really felt that God was saying that His timing was just as important as our location.  As the saying goes... "Being in the right place at the right time".

This is a huge leap of faith for us, but we feel more and more that this is the right move.

Hayley and I recognized that we had become comfortable in Atlanta.  We had our friends, our favorite places to eat, our jobs that paid the rent.  But was I really doing what I was supposed to be doing?  For months I felt like I was working really hard, but felt very little satisfaction in doing so.  I felt hollow.  Even leading worship had become a task for me and not a pleasure.  That's when I knew something was wrong.  God began to reveal what was wrong.  I had made myself so busy with so many responsibilities that I had left no time to dream, no time to create, and no time to share my music.  My mind was always swirling with the next thing I was supposed to do.  My responsibilities had imprisoned my creativity.  There were moments that I caught glimpses of what it meant to do what you're supposed to do, and in those moments, I had never felt more alive.

I think it really hit home for me when I was asked to open for my friend Josh Bayne's CD release at the Georgia Theatre in Athens.  I played for about 45 minutes in front of about 100 people at one of the best venues in the Southeast.  Some of you may be thinking, but Reuben, you play for way more people than that every Sunday at church.  And although that is true, the thing that made this particularly special was that the 45 minutes I played were all songs that I had written.  These were songs from my heart.  When I sing on Sundays, I believe every word that I'm singing, but as a creative person, nothing is more satisfying than sharing something you believe in that you also created.  I think on the night that I played at the Georgia Theatre something clicked.

It reminded me that my desire has always been to make music...  Not just play it, but create it.  Nashville had always been on my radar, and I even flirted with the idea when I was 20 years old.  I didn't though.  Because I was scared.  Scared that I would get lost in the shuffle.  Scared that I'd find out I wasn't any good.  Scared I'd end up on a Broadway street corner playing for change.  But more recently, God began showing me that the fear I had of failing in Nashville was a sign that I was actually supposed to move there.

My good friend Chris Moerman who I work with at Grace Athens gave a message on Jesus in His hometown.  The passage from Mark 6 notes that Jesus was unable to perform any mighty works in His hometown because of the people's unbelief.  Chris pointed out that the people were just "familiar" with Jesus because he was from there.  Their familiarity required no faith.  Oh we know Jesus, He's Mary's son.  The following verses show Jesus sending His disciples into other towns with no food, no money, no extra clothes and instructs them to heal the sick and cast out demons.  The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them and they saw many miracles.  Chris pointed out that the disciples saw God move because they were in an unfamiliar place where they had to rely completely on God.  When I heard this, I knew what I was supposed to do.  Atlanta was familiar and comfortable.  But if I was honest with myself, I didn't want familiar and comfortable.  I wanted adventure.  I wanted to see God do some amazing things.  I knew that I was going to have to step into the unfamiliar in order to truly trust God.

So we'll be officially moved in by May 1st.  We'll be in East Nashville (YAY!).  Hayley will be continuing to do makeup artistry and growing her business.  My plan is to write as much as possible and work on my own music.  We have some friends that already live in Nashville that have warmly welcomed us!  If anyone has friends that you think we should meet, please feel free to connect us.  Hayley and I love meeting new people.

We will be back and forth between Nashville and Atlanta for different events, so you will still see us from time to time.  We also would love for folks to visit us once we are settled in.  Thank you again for loving us so well and we appreciate your continued prayers for our marriage and our careers!

Atlanta, we bid you adieu.  Until we meet again...