Archive for August, 2008

Going Home

Within the next 10 days my wife and I will be moving back to the area that we are originally from. Due to unforeseen difficulties with ministry we will not be involved with paid ministry for sometime. We will continue to worship our God and get involved with a local church, but for now we will have a break from the stress of paid ministry.

This new chapter for my family comes as a blessing at this point in our lives. It is a release from the traditional thinking church and gives us time to assess where we go from here. We have always talked about being back in the area where we are from with a desire to possibly plant a church. While we have no certainty of our future we have faith in a FAITHFUL GOD who controls all things and will be directing us where to go next. For now I keep reminding myself of Joseph and his time in prison. Certainly he must have thought at different times that God was not in that when in fact God had everything to do with it. As David has proclaimed “I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living (Psalm 27:13)” I say also. A new chapter begins with God as the author.

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Phone Call From Steve Farrar

Last night as I was starting to watch one of my favorite shows on TV the phone rang with a guy who said he was Steve Farrar. The name sounded familiar and he asked if I knew who he was. When he told me that he was a Christian author I looked him up at Christian Books online to realize that I had read one of his books and knew who this guy was. In my mind I began to think “why in the world is this guy calling me on a Friday night and how does he know who I am?” He began to explain to me that he heard I was going through some tough times with my recent departure from vocational ministry and wanted to know if he could talk to me about it. He informed me that a mutual friend had sent him an email telling him of my recent hardship and then went on to tell me how he went through something similar some 18 years ago.

We probably spent 45-50 minutes on the phone together and Steve ministered to me for the entire time. It was something that God knew that I desperately needed. It was God’s providential hand letting me know that He was with me and as the New Testament states that “He is faithful.” During the past month I have gone through many different emotions and now I was talking with someone who finally understood everyone of them. Here I was talking to a guy I have never meant and who is well known in the Christian realm and yet he ministered too me in greater ways than anyone up to this point. Before this phone call I had been wandering about God’s movement and care in this situation. It was God’s perfect timing and comfort that I had been so desperately seeking only the day before. It was a aha moment! It was a reminder that God’s hand is not removed from my situation, it is directing it for His purposes and His glory.

So many times as Christians we forget the Sovereignty of God. It means that God is in control of all things at all times. We forget that what looks bad from our perspective is just the way God wants it to be for His own purposes. Throughout my frustration with leaving ministry for a season I have been meditating on Joseph and the time that he spent in prison and alienated from his family for many years and seasons. For some reason I have been reminding myself of Joseph and his hardships to help me through when I feel confused. At the end of our conversation Steve Farrar informed me that he is releasing a new book about Joseph which is the picture for this post and asked me if he could send me a copy. I believe God wants me to remember Joseph and this conversation just backed it up. God speaks to us the clearest when we are at our lowest. He cares and He is faithful! Praise the Lord for his gracious hand.

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