Thanks to all you random people out in cyberspace who take time out of your busy days to visit my blog, even when I don’t post any new content for a long time. I’m sorry for the lack of activity here these days. It hasn’t been intentional, we’ve just found ourselves at a crossroads in our lives and much of our attention has been given to making some important decisions.
Let you bring everyone up to speed.
As many of you know, we moved to Rochester three years ago with the desire to do ministry – possibly even church planting – with the C&MA. There’s no need to rehash every single detail of what has taken place over the past few years. But suffice it to say, so far no opportunity has presented itself to do the ministry we felt God had called us here to do.
Over the past month or so we have been talking to a couple in another district about what looks like a promising opportunity for us. I’ve had multiple conversations over the phone with the pastor of the church, and Sunday Cheryl and I spent two hours on a conference call with he and his wife. Yesterday the four of us spent the day in prayer and fasting as we prayerfully considered what the next steps in this relationship should be.
Now we’re at a point where we’re asking our community of friends and family to join us in prayer.
I have so much love and passion for the City of Rochester. I see it as a place with so much untapped potential for ministry and the building up of God’s kingdom. I want with every fiber of my being to remain here and do the ministry that I feel God has called me to do, and to be the pastor and person that I feel God has called me to be. As much as missionaries feel a burden and a love for the culture and people they’ve been called to, I have always considered Rochester my mission field. That’s why the thought of leaving, having never truly had the chance to begin the work I had envisioned, tears my heart to pieces.
By the same token, I know that the gifts and abilities that God has entrusted to me can be used wherever he places me. I also understand that, when it really comes down to it, ministry is ultimately about people; and Jesus is desperate to reach people everywhere. The calling to serve the Lord must supersede any subsidiary calling to location or culture.
It has been no secret that the juggling act between working full-time and our desire to do ministry has been an extremely difficult challenge for us to overcome. In the beginning we took a severe financial hit in order to focus more on ministry, and these later days have found us enjoying the (minimal) breathing room that comes with greater financial gain, but much to the expense of ministry. That is why the thought of turning down an opportunity to do ministry on a full-time basis and truly beginning my pastoral career, for the sake of remaining in Rochester, completely terrifies me.
So we could use your prayers. We know we already have your support, but we’re asking for you to join us in praying for discernment and wisdom as we decide what is right for our family while we wade through the sometimes murky waters of “calling.” Things could move pretty fast for us in one direction or the other. I am confident in God’s care and provision, and know that whatever decision is made, because we are truly seeking him, we will not be lead away from his will.