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He didn’t know exactly where he would end up. He just knew he had to go. He had to follow the voice in his head, the nudging that wouldn’t let him sleep through the night. He understood that he’d never know peace again unless he left the place of his father’s burial.

But, home is never easy to leave.

His people were sophisticated and smart, the temples and burial sites were signatures of their intellectual prowess. His people were cultured, as visitors from the trade routes introduced new ideas and brought exotic materials to their way of living.

The first written language known in history originated in his country, his stomping grounds, that bragged up to 300,000 people at one time. His people invented the wheel, the plow, law codes and they were history’s original brewers. The beer of his people was a nutrient-rich ale and was touted as the key to a “joyful heart and a contented liver.”

Abram had to leave Ur, his homeland. He had to leave it all.

But to where? Though he didn’t know the exact boundaries, he knew it was a land that God had promised to him and his descendants.

So Abram packed up his wife, his nephew and their household, turned his back on the comfortable, the beautiful, the familiar and he started a new journey into the unknown.

Later in the narrative of Abram’s story, it is written that God made a promise that seemed impossible and yet, “Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.”

Thus, a story of faith was penned in the annals of history. God called a person to step into a promise that was not yet seen with physical eyes. And because that man responded, he would become the father of faith, of my faith, and millions of men and women throughout time.

I’ve been thinking this past week of my personal Ur.

My Ur is Casper, Wyoming. It is my family and my friends. Ur is my job, my church, my community. However, “Ur” is also my long held beliefs and the way I interact with the people in my life. Ur is the way I live in the comfort of my friends and the way I spend money, the books I devour, the ways I recreate. Spiritually speaking, Ur is my sweet spot, my comfort zone.

I have this feeling, this roiling in my gut, that is pushing at me, speaking to me.

“Leave Ur.”

I don’t think it’s about leaving a physical place, but a way of thinking, a way of feeling that has become comfortable to me. I don’t have to ask my husband if he could sell his business and leave town with me. I don’t have to pack up all my belongings, kiss my kids goodbye or resign from my job.

But, I might have to pack up some of my comfort and head into a way of communicating that feels a little more uncomfortable. I might have to strip away certain things I believe, examine them and move them to a new place of purpose. I might have to pull up the stakes of my automatic way of doing life and lean into the vast unknown of living on the edge.

I don’t know about leaving what’s happy, comfortable, “smart.” But I do know, I want to believe God and live in complete obedience to Him.

Yes, I’m thinking, it just may be time to leave Ur.

Larry and Linda Kloster sponsor this column.


Community News Editor

Sally Ann Shurmur arrived at the Star-Tribune to cover sports two weeks after graduating from the University of Wyoming and now serves as community news editor. She was raised in Laramie and is a passionate fan of Cowboys football, food and family.

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