I shared over on facebook the other day that I would be sharing some BIG news for my family - well, here it is! Actually - I'm gonna make like Ryan Seacrest and drag it out for a while ;)
My husband used to be the high school bible teacher at a Christian school. He is a Pastor, but our church only provides a part-time salary, so this was his "day job". He loved teaching - he loved his students. He even told me that if he wasn't supernaturally called to be a Pastor - he would totally love being a teacher for the rest of his life. We were comfortable in our little life. And God surprised us with the joyful news that we were expecting baby number three. Life was good. Famous last words - right?
It was four days before school was supposed to start that my husband got the call. We knew that the school was making budget cuts - but my husband had gotten a contract so we though that we were safe. I walked into the kitchen while he was on the phone and knew immediately that something was wrong. He had lost his job. My mind began racing...what are we going to do? How will we pay the bills? How could they do this? I am pregnant!
And then that voice. I didn't want to hear it - but it was there. Do you trust me, daughter? Of course, God, but I mean - this is a bit much! Do you trust me with everything - even if you have nothing? Ouch. Was God really asking this of me? But then, didn't it all belong to Him in the first place? The really hard part was how sad my husband was to leave a job he loved so much and students he cared so much about. I wrestled with it for a while, but God began to provide for us and I could not deny His faithfulness. Not exactly in the way we wanted. We swallowed our pride and applied for unemployment and government healthcare. We began to pray about what we should do. After about two months we began to feel like we should start seeking out other Pastoral positions. My husband sent his resume to a few churches and church districts, and we just continued to pray, seek Him and serve at our church.
God walked us through one of the most incredible faith experiences of our life as we welcomed our baby girl into this world.We continued to pray, but after six months it was getting hard to trust. We decided to cast a wider net - so my husband sent his resume out to every church district (in our denomination) across the U.S. plus numerous other staff positions (over 100 resumes sent!). As summer neared again, a few opportunities came available. We interviewed at a few churches but for one reason or another, they just did not work out. There were many times that we did not know how we were going to make it - but every time God showed up in a different way and met our needs.
By now it had been a year since he lost his job, and I started to feel like we had been forgotten. Oh how silly we are - God provides our every need - and yet we are so quick to doubt Him the moment He doesn't provide exactly how we think He should. My husband's unemployment was up in December, so we knew that we were nearing the deadline for him to find a position or we would have to stay where we were - but we had discovered that jobs in our area were hard to come by. I really believed that God would provide something by December - but Christmas came and went with no job. My husband was fervently applying for jobs near us and thankfully a position opened up at my mom's work (a Christian Preschool). It was a humbling position - he used to be the assistant director of a childcare center and now he was working as a "floater" (substitute). But God had provided for our family and we were thankful.
I continued to pray - knowing that my husband was feeling restless (I was too!). I believed that God was going to do something new in our lives. And then the phone rang that afternoon - I looked and saw it was my husband. He had gotten a call about a church nearby seeking a Pastor. It all happened so fast. We interviewed - they voted. Suddenly, it was becoming real. The hopes and prayers of the past twenty months were coming to fruition. After much prayer and a church vote, the decision was made.
We accepted the call for my husband to become the Senior Pastor at the Lexington Church of the Nazarene.
Here's the really cool part - this church is only about five minutes from that Christian school my husband used to teach at. Coincidence? I think not. God began to build a love for and connection with this community four years ago. We never imagined that we would be serving in ministry there - but that is just the kind of God we serve! We are anxious, excited and hopeful. Of course, it is bittersweet as we say goodbye to our beloved church family and move further away from my family (although - such a blessing to still be very close!). Our first Sunday will be July 28th - almost 2 years after my husband lost his job! Will you pray with us during this time of transition? We will be starting at a new church, moving to a new home and community - plus we will still need to find a small way to supplement our income. We are believing God for His provision - He has proven time and again that He is faithful!
Thanks for listening as I shared from my heart - I know I can count on being lifted up by so many! I am so blessed to be a part of such a wonderful community of believers here in our little neck of the web :) Blessings!