Friday, November 10, 2006

The Journey, Part 3

After a month of mission services and being miserable after each one, I talked to my wife and told her something had to give. I could not continue not being in God's will. To my astonishment and surprise, she agreed and said she was ready for full-time ministry! You see, it is all God's timing, not mine. He's God and I'm not.

Since then, I have talked to two of the pastor's at church. Since I am very much involved with missions and the Singles ministry, I will be a pastor overseeing those ministries. Missions is my passion and God has given me a burden for the Single's, especially the 20-something sincgles that are post college but not married yet.

I will be bi-vocational for a time, since my church just hired another pastor and can't afford to bring on another one full-time. The way the church is growing and God is blessing the church, I hope to be added fulltime in 1-2 years. Until then, I will be staying at my current employment.

This blog will chronicle the journey from here. Feel free to ask me any questions along the way.

Here's to the journey...

Thursday, November 09, 2006

The Journey, Part 2

After talking with my pastor, he suggested I finish my degree and take some seminary classes. As another pastor friend told me, "If you are going to use a hoe, you need to sharpen it." Studying ministry and preaching techniques is important for effective ministry, which I beleive he was trying to tell me.

I finished my degree and, while in the process, was told of a small store front church that needed help leading worship. I am a gifted musician and had always thought this was the area God was leading me. I worked with this church fo about 12-15 months and the pastor offered me the job full-time. I tried to force the issue on my wife and daughter. Never a good idea. My wife was not hearing anything from God concerning this little church. In fact, she was adamantly against it. She was so much against the idea that she didn't want me to even think of seminary.

There I was, stuck with no place to go. I started into a graduate program in History, thinking I could teach college evening courses. That was my new goal. I was miserable. I hated my job. I wasn't happy in anything I did, except mission trips and getting people excited about missions. This summer, I was asked at least a dozen times while on missions trips if I was a pastor. I would say no, then be depressed. We went to Ireland for a vacation and we fell in love with the people. I could see us holding home Bible studies and working with the small Baptist churches that were trying to survive against the established Catholic and Irish churches. My wife felt the same way. We even picked the same region we would like to live in. I was still miserable.

After the Ireland and Brazil summer trips, we had 4 straight Sunday evening services that focused on missions. We heard from all the different mission teams: Croatia, Brazil, Zimbabwe, Gulf Coast and Sri Lanka. We heard from an evangelist concerning his work in the Ukraine and Eastern Europe. I was crying during and after every service. I was miserable.

What could I do? Tomorrow, I will bring the story up to date.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The Journey Starts...

I mentioned yesterday that I have surrendered to the gospel. My aife and I did that about a month ago. I thought I would start this journey by explaining how I knew it was God's call and what has happened since.

After spending 9 years in California (8 years too long), my wife and I moved to Colorado. I worked (still do for now) for Association of Christian Schools International and ACSI followed Focus on the Family's lead in moving to Colorado.

Once we found a church and got involved with the music ministries of the church, we suggested to out pastor to contact Jess Moody, our former pastor in California who had since retired, to speak at the church. Jess is very well known in the Southern Baptist realm and our pastor was pleased to offer an invitation to Jess to preach a revival. This would have been about 1996.

At that revival, Jess spoke about ministry. He knew that our church was beginning to look for land to build a larger facility. We were land-locked in a neighborhood and had 3 morning services to accomodate the people. We were also renting space 4 blocks away for extra classroom space. Most of Jess' sermons were on what a church needs to do to stay focused on ministry during a period of growth, warning that if we stay focused, the growth might continue for some time. This wasn't a negative warning, just reality.

During one of his sermons he talked about the church raising up ministers within the church, either to start new churches or to aid the present church during its growth. That is when God spoke to me, that still small voice in my head and heart that told me He wanted me in full-time ministry. I hesitated. People always said that I could be a preacher like my grandpa, but that idea always scared me. For one, Grandpa was a great preacher and pastor and I didn't want to be held to that measuring stick.

I kept silent for a few years, but that still, small voice kept telling me I needed to surrender to Him. I thought that all of mission trips I did would suffice. They did not. The trips would be a part of my decision, but they were not a replacement for complete surrender.

I finally talked to my paster about this. I will mention tomorrow his comments and the further developments. I am not in faover of long blog entries and this one has stretched the limits! I will continue tomorrow with the journey.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Crummy Church Signs

Ever see a church sign and wonder what the heck they were thinking when they posted it? Check out this website. Enjoy!

New Direction

This blog will take a new direction. I have read enough blogs by men who were apparently called to full-time ministry, yet have left the church and writing about their reasons why they left. God has called me to full-time ministry and I am surrendering to His call. The plan is to chronicle the journey, its ups and downs, the endurance of the race. I am not casting judgement on any of the blogs I have read. I just find it troubling.

To the journey, may God lead and, at times carry me, to do His will.


The writer of Hebrews in chapter 10 verses 32-39 tells us to endure. The word for endure means to remain under a load. A better description may be of a soldier under attack by the enemy, recieving the full brunt of the attack, yet having the strength to retaliate and win.

This is what we, as Christians, need to do, no matter the circumstances. God has promised to be faithful, so we need to cling to Him and trust in His promises.

verse 39 "We are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved."