A little update ... a little more waiting, but more of God!
"God wastes nothing", these words have both haunted me and thrilled me in the past days. For the past two months, I have been interviewing for a lead pastor role in another part of the country. Last week I would have told you, we were moving to that city with a church that was both young and hungry. My family has prayed each night for: the church, our preparation, and both of our family's and the church's flourishing. Well, I am no longer a candidate for the position and yet we still pray that the church flourishes. As I told my boss and friend Thursday, "this one feels like a punch in the gut". He said he felt it too. Yet, the Lord has kept my heart and mind at peace. It has been a thrill to remember that my God has every detail of our life in His hands (John 10). He has a plan for our family and will not waste the work He has been doing within us these last 6 years (Proverbs 16). Although what I believed was our next place to serve was soon coming, it wasn't where we thought it would be. Now we wait to see where and when and I know God isn't wasting a moment of this part of our journey, but in the desire to be transparent ... this is painful and we feel a little helpless right now.
However, that feeling of helplessness is also bringing hope and joy! The Christian life is not a destination but a journey and that journey is one of dependence on the Lord to bring provisions and the Christian to flourishing. The only way the Christian experiences that flourishing is to constantly abide (John 15) and depend on the Lord. I have two choices right now, trust the Lord or don't trust the Lord. I don't have any answers or new strategies, I only have Him. I have tried (and will continue to do) sending out resumes, applying for jobs that I might fit, and look for any doors that might be opening for us to step through (although I have been tempted to try to sneak in a few of those cracked open doors). My feeling of helplessness is producing hope and joy within me. I am daily reminded that the Lord will not leave me nor forsake me (Duet. 31). That He will complete what He started (Philippians 1) and that He is the Provider for my family. He is reminding me that I was created for Him and what I believe I am losing out on is really materialistic and not necessary for me to enjoy the Life that He has prepared for me. My friend and mentor Paul Gotthardt would say it more like this, "God is preparing us for what He has prepared for us".
So, here we are again, waiting on the Lord to reveal His actions and to bring us to a place where we will flourish. I have no power within me to change our situation. As I write these last few lines, I pray my helplessness will not be met with your offense nor your pity. I pray that you will flourish and cling to the Lord for every aspect of your life. I pray that you will live as we are right now, in faith that the Lord has this, since faith is the only way to please Him (Romans 14). We are not experiencing a hiccup, a struggle or a time of God's punishment ... we are seeing God create a heart of flourishing where it once settled for anything less than the Lord. Hear me when I write this; it is painful but it is good and all things that He does or allows is for our good (Romans 8). Since He doesn't waste our journey, it must be that this part of the journey is His working within us to bring us to the life of abundance (John 10) and flourishing.
Yes, we have a little more waiting, but we get more of God ... which is exactly what we needed!