Back in my office, still reeling from the news that Midday Connection (a program that aired nationally on Moody Radio for over 20 years) was ending, I stood in front of my bookcase and just stared. I had rows of books lined up for giveaways, Millrose Club mugs, potential guest information, a binder full of dreams for future Midday adventures… I grabbed a stack of promotional materials and headed for the big trash bin.
I emptied my bookshelves that first day. Somehow that felt good. It was too sad to look at all of the possibilities and dreams for a dying program. I’d rather look at empty shelves that spoke of other possibilities that I couldn’t see yet.
I went about my job in a fog. Our team was in shock, but we still needed to schedule programs, host programs, and answer listener emails, post facebook posts – and not tell anyone that the program was ending. The week after my meeting, I hosted a program and swallowed my tears and shook off my sadness as the on-air light came on. I wondered how were we going to manage this? I understood the reasons why we couldn’t tell anyone about the change – Moody Radio had a contractual agreement with our affiliate radio stations and they needed to be informed first. But, going about our days, doing programs, pretending nothing was wrong was painful. One of the things I’ve loved most about Midday is our pursuit of authenticity and vulnerability with our listeners. We talked about real struggles – our own personal struggles, doubts, half-formed thoughts. And, here was a biggie that we couldn’t talk about with listeners. I felt like a liar, a fraud.
Along with this deep grief, anger, and heartbreak, I recognized that there was some anticipation, relief, and readiness to see what God might have for me next. Holding grief and anticipation together – in the same hand, with the same breath – has been maddening, draining. How do you authentically live both realities? Well, here’s my chance to learn as I sat in my chair.