Recently told in a very nice way I tend to be long winded in my storytelling, I shall spare too much of a tale this night and simply communicate a few facts.
But maybe just a little bit of a story, first.
I still remember the evening I went to the Highland Village campus for this informal meeting staff didn’t think would bring very many people. It was December 4, 2011, and I was barely four months old in Christ, but as I’ve shared before, I was called quickly and explicitly. I also remember seeing Matt walk in from the back and stand amazed at the hundred or so people gathered in the church to hear of a new plan for missions at The Village Church. He had expected a handful or two at most, he said.
As a result of that information meeting, I filled out one lengthly application that was lost by staff and had to redo another months later. On the day I had an appointment to go over that application, there as a terrible thunder storm. I later learned there was tornado just to the south of me as I drove on George Bush Freeway in Carrollton, headed to the church. When I finally arrived about twenty minutes late, I don’t think that pastor quite knew what to do with me. Toward the end of our meeting, he stared at my Bible that sat on the edge of his desk, and asked me whose Bible it was. “It’s mine,” I told him. He stared again and asked how long I’d had it. That Bible was less than a year old, and that is not what he expected for a new Christian, apparently.
He sat in disbelief at my ESV Journaling Bible, already held together with leopard print duct tape, worn edges, and notes even on the outside edge of the pages.
Well, that evening information meeting was very much a rough draft of a much bigger idea, and I have weathered all drafts since. We have had four of five different people come into the role of Missions Pastor, each with a different idea of how it would work. I remember someone once asking me why I didn’t leave The Village Church Flower Mound and go to another campus or even to another church. I never left because I knew the church was here for me as much as I am here for them.
There has been a maturation for both of us, and the Lord has been faithful in it. Walking through it has been hard — some of it downright painful — but I praise God for clearer vision not only for the church, but also for me. I praise God for his perfect timing for us, and that we would trust him in it, and the process, however messy, because he is the one who hold together all things.
In all of the hard over the last eight years of figuring where we fit in the process, there have been places that have been sweet. Even as I recalled a few recent things to Matt on Sunday, he said, “I just love how God has given you these little kisses, all along the way.” I do, too.
With all that said, the facts:
On Sunday I had a meeting with Trevor Joy and Brian Walck, and after updating them on where we are, we are back in the Sending Program at the Village Church.
I will not have to do the Training Program (a year long commitment) because I completed a course in Missional Leadership through Mars Hill. If needed, I may take some online options for further study.
I will have to complete a Goer Missional Community, which is part of how the church is sending people. The vision for that I think is awesome, in that it will create missional community, growth in church planting and discipleship, and also present mock hardships and stressors that families face once on the field, but here at home. Because Amelie and I are single parent household, have done YWAM DTS and have moved so much, I do not believe those stressors will be as applicable (es. we aren’t the typical family that has stayed in one place). Trevor tells me what I will bring to the church plant will be incredible, and that makes it worth the wait to me.
We have been given a timeline of 18 months.
So, a few ways to pray I can think of right now:
That I would be able. to say with confidence we are funded enough by end of May that I will not have to return to teaching next year so I can raise support full time.
For the lord to quicken the hearts of our supporters — past and future — to join us. We cannot go anywhere without monthly support.
Grace in administration. It is not my gift. A helper, even.
Our little car would last another 18 months (it is going to need the front axle replaced, and that costs more than the car was purchased for/worth).
To assemble an Advocacy Team (they will help keep us infront of the church in various ways once we go).
For our church in Florence, and our home once there.
Amelie’s heart. She is hesitant to trust the process, given the fact it has been so difficult for so long. She is ready to go, and struggles with the back and forth as I have.