Arriving at the church for the Launch Evaluation we didn't know what to expect. The church was massive! West Ridge has 5000+ people. We didn't know how to feel. You try not to pass judgment on a building or a people but sometimes it is hard not to.
We arrived highly skeptical of a calling, mostly to safeguard our hearts. Josh was waiting for the - no. We weren't sure we were in the right place but as the time went on, with every passing hour, we felt more in the right place. It felt like confirmation that we were doing what the Lord had been preparing for us before time.
This wisdom here was priceless. Men and women spoke from all stages of the ministry journey. It seemed each person said something Josh and I had been thinking months prior. It got deeper and deeper as we were asked to speak openly about the desires of our hearts. We were encouraged to really express any doubts and fears. In a way, the renewal was overwhelming. To feel engulfed by God, in a sense. Its the only way I can describe it.
I feel like, in that moment, we felt God's true covering or presence. There was no fear or doubt, only peace, and assurance that we had arrived at the perfect time. In the following days, the only struggle was now unpacking all the truth we felt God laying on our hearts. We had a calling, and God would reveal it in time.
We decided to go on this trip out of faith. We trusted that if we took steps toward God he would reveal himself as we were obedient. Well, things were tight. Literally 15 minutes before we left I brought in the mail. God gave us a check from our bank because we had overpaid into our escrow account. What?! He gave us more money to cover a hotel, meals and then have some leftover. Confirmation we were doing the right thing or what!?
God SO touched my heart through this trip. It was hard to leave our daughter for so long, but I have come back so refreshed (physically, emotionally, and spiritually). I know it was worth it!
Being surrounded with such godly people, all on fire for serving God was so moving! I imagine it will be what heaven is like. I can't explain how encouraged we were by this group of people who volunteered their time to meet with us.
Met some other great couples searching for their vision as well. We met others who knew what God was calling them to. They were coming to get equipped. It will be neat to see where God has taken each of them in ten years. Got a taste of heaven in Georgia rubbing elbows with Christians who were fully alive in their faith. Incredible!
Launch stressed the importance in priorities and boundaries. They focused on how important the wives are to the ministry. Never heard a organization stress healthy marriage and families as key to any kind of success. Its so true but it has totally not been the focus of ministry in the last generations.
I am pleased that our marriage evaluation was flagged. Because we were so in-tune with each other, they thought we had cheated. The guy said he has never seen such scores in 25 years of marriage counseling and wondered if we had taken the test together. We didn't! I know it is all God, but hearing that gave me such peace. If we did go into ministry full-time that we would have a good chance of keeping a healthy marriage and family put to rest one of my fears. We have a good base.
Hearing from other pastor's wives, was what I needed to hear. There were all extremes of personality and vision of their personal calling. One awesome lady said, "I am called to remain healthy, so I can bandage my husband's wounds when he comes home and to be the best mama ever." I have such a heart for my children that to hear that I don't have to be running women's ministry/children's ministry (if I don't want to) and I could still be a great pastor's wife was so freeing! When the kids are older I have no doubt I will want to be more involved in ministry, but at this stage, my kids are my heart. After being there for Josh, of course.
At the end we had to wait around to drive home with Mike and Holly, so we were surprised when they called us in and gave us our results right then. They affirmed God's calling in our lives which was so encouraging! Hearing other godly people affirm what God had already told us in our hearts was some tasty icing on an already incredible cake! They said that when/if God calls us to build a church they are ready to back us and help us through training. I could see joy shining in my husband's eyes. My own heart was overwhelmed that these people we came to respect so much, would want to partner with us. That in and of itself an honor.
So, now we press in and wait for God to make our path clear. I have so much more peace that if I were to be a pastor's wife that God could make me a great one. Looking forward to getting their full report with suggestions for strengthening any weak areas.
My favorite saying was "start your day receiving a fullness." Most of the time, I start my day with prayer or scripture but they encouraged to instead start the day accepting from God. Accept His love and allow Him to fill you, so you serve him in overflow instead of your own strength. Makes sense! I needed to hear that! Seems a selfish way to start the day, but He created us to have a relationship with Him! Needless to say, I feel like I have new wind in my sails. I love God and I am so thankful that he has more than the norm for me. Just saying that makes me cry. He gave me this crazy desire to live an adventurous life for him and I will accept no less.
Thank you Father for loving me and fulfilling me like no one else can!
Going away next week with the hubby to a church planting evaluation/seminar. Excited to hear from God if this might be a new direction for us, but also a little scared that it might be. My parents called saying that they had some money for us and they also will be watching Dassa-Beanie. Now we can afford to go to Georgia and not worry about hotel fees etc as we search out what God has for us! Whatever else will be gifted to agape midwifery towards the birth of our child since we won't be going on any out of country missions trips till after KeiKei is a bit older. We have no clue how God pays all our bills but he always comes thru! He is the ultimate budget balancer!
Praying that the trip is a refreshing one for us. This will be the first time we have been out of state just the two of us since our honeymoon. Hoping it is also spiritually refreshing for us too as we seek God's will for our future in serving Him. We want to be used in whatever capacity but it would be stellar if we had a more concrete direction.
I was praying for a friend's marriage the other day and got a text moments later telling me how God had already answered my prayer!
Getting a fence this weekend when I thought we wouldn't be able to afford one for quite some time! Thank you, God, for sweet neighbors!
I helped design some websites! I haven't had a job since before our daughter was born so I am feeling so stoked! It feels good to be able to help our family in a monetary way. I get to be home with my baby, so no daycare bills. I also get to do something that I love when she is napping. I am so grateful for these opportunities that God has placed in my lap - literally! Such a boost to my self-esteem and a joy to be useful!
I am feeling so overwhelmed by God's provision and am so glad I am writing this all down. I know how He always has provided but I hope seeing it written out will help me not take it for granted. My memory is poor and I want to remember every detail about God's goodness in my life!
Going on a long-awaited date (voyage of the dawn treader!) tonight with Josh since my parents are gonna come watch Dassa-Beanie. We are so blessed to have supportive family.
Halfway through my pregnancy with another healthy baby girl!
We were so impressed with how God blesses us that we wanted to start a journal that we can look back on to count our blessings.
We want this journal to be a testament of God's provision and care for our family not only to remind us when things get rough but to also hopefully encourage others!
Took Dassa to the mediquick to find out she doesn't have croupe as we feared but a slight ear infection.
Thank you, God,
for knowing our budget and for providing as you always do!
My Current Mantra
Walk humbly with God and do the work at your hands....