Lorene Eberhardt

LoreneEberhardtGod led my husband, Nathan, and me to Restoration in 2012, after we felt his gentle nudges to leave our larger church at the time and seek a more liturgical, smaller church community that demanded more of us than Sunday attendance. We walked into the old church on Quincy Street and immediately felt at home and known. Within two months we were plugged into a small group, volunteering on Sundays, and ready to join our new church family in the dreams of a new church building.

God’s providential hand in bringing my husband Nathan and me to Restoration in 2012 is just one of countless times he has redeemed and restored my story of loss, abandonment, and brokenness. My twin sister and I were born in Taiwan to an unmarried woman, and at the age of 2, were put up for adoption. By God’s grace a Christian couple in the United States said yes to welcoming two toddlers overnight. Eighteen months later God’s plan took another unexpected turn when my [adopted] father passed away suddenly one evening just prior to my fourth birthday. Because my parents were believers and knit into the community of a non-denominational church, our family of three was surrounded by loving members who ensured that we never suffered for physical, spiritual, and emotional needs.

I cannot remember a Sunday where we did not go to church, both morning and evening, and very often on Wednesday evenings too. I also attended my church’s Christian school from Kindergarten until I graduated from high school, and my childhood years were filled with Bible songs & hymns, memory verses and sword drills, stories of creation, the flood, prophets & kings, and the teachings of Jesus’s life, death, and resurrection.

The journey that has followed since I prayed ‘the sinner’s prayer’ as a 5 year old is the process of sanctification, an ongoing series of more deliberate choices to trust, remember God’s goodness and sufficiency in all aspects of my life, and often the unwilling surrender of my own plans and ambitions to Jesus’s desire to lavish his abundance on me in ways I could never see on my own.

God reminded me as a rising college freshman that He died to break me from the chains of Satan’s lies, and my relationship with Him does not rise or fall based on how diligently I was reading my Bible or saying my prayers each night. His love is unwavering, and even more, He pursues me as his beloved with the Truth of his sacrifice and redemption.

I find myself inspired and challenged daily to live and move in the reality of the words I say to my own two children about the character of the God of the universe and of our everyday lives. If I want them to know that the sacred is ever present within the mundane (the liturgy of the ordinary) – God has something to say about interactions in the classroom or among our family members – then I have to model that in my own attitude toward my work and life outside the walls of the church, from building multi-million dollar operating budgets to buying groceries.

I am humbled and grateful for the vital gifts I have both given and received at Restoration that enable the flourishing of our church community in various capacities as a liturgical volunteer, small group leader, RestoGoes team member, APEX leader, personnel chair, strategic plan advisory team member, and now with the opportunity to serve on the vestry.

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