Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Change on the Horizon

If you had asked me 10 years ago if I would be in Clarksville in 2007 and what I would have been doing, I would have told you, "Yeah, probably so...I'll be a Veterinarian." Of course, 10 years ago would have been my Sophomore year of high school, and I was just certain that I was going to be a Vet. Psalm 33:10 says, " The LORD brings the counsel of the nations to nothing; he frustrates the plans of the peoples." Over the course of a few years, the Lord frustrated my plans, and I surrendered them. By this, I don't say that it is wrong for a person to become a Veterinarian, or any other profession. But for me, the Lord had different plans.
When we first moved to Louisville from Knoxville, we thought that it would be best if I would focus on school without the added responsibility of serving on staff in a church. Throughout those two years, I struggled with that, though. I had left Vet school to go into the ministry, and now it didn't seem that I was any closer than before we had moved. In August of 2006, I took a position at Little Mount Baptist Church. They had no youth, and wanted to start a youth program, and that's why I came on board. Over the last year, the Lord really has blessed Little Mount. We've had 9 professions of faith, and we can see real growth in Christlikeness in the youth.
Throughout our year at Little Mount, we've formed some deep relationships. I never imagined that it would be so heart-wrenching to leave a church (I feel as if I'm turning my back on my family), but this past Sunday, our departure from Little Mount began. We have accepted a position at Grace Community Church, where I will shepherd the community groups. Community groups are small groups of 12 to 15 peole who commit to meet weekly for 12-18 months. During these meetings, people study the Bible and live life together, sharing the victories and defeats of life. Basically, they "do church." My role will be two-fold. I will strengthen, encourage, and equip the existing community group leaders as they shepherd their group. I will also enlist new leaders. This is going to be a big task. Grace is growing so quickly that they have a deficit of leaders. They have lots of people that are willing to commit to community groups, but not enough leaders for the groups. I'm sure that many leaders are already there, they just need to be told that they can actually do it. This responsibility will fall on me.
We're excited to begin serving at Grace. This is a great opportunity, and is something that we did not think would be available for many years down the road. But the Lord has made this opportunity available for us, and we are ready to get going. We are praying even now that the Lord would continue to place a burden in our hearts for the lost in Clarksville.
We hope to hear from you soon.


Sunday, October 21, 2007

Bittersweet News

Wow... I can't believe that it has been so long since I have posted anything to our blog. A lot of exciting things have happened in the last month, most of which we have been unable to talk about... that is until now. All announcements have been made, and all information in public knowledge, so I guess the last thing to do is share the news will all you who may not know. I guess I will start from the beginning...

A couple of months ago on a random Wednes
day night Ben received a phone call from a pastor in a church in his home town (Clarksville, TN) asking if he would be interested in a position that they had. We were caught off guard, flattered, but a little reluctant to move forward with anything. Ben still has a year of Seminary left, we were really happy in our position at Little Mount and the way the Lord was moving, and we were unsure about the church in Clarksville and their beliefs. We prayed about it for a couple of days and decided that we should at least meet with the pastor and find out more about the church and the position. To make a long story short, we had several meetings with the staff at the church, asked them a lot of hard questions, sought the counsel of our family and other wise Christians, and prayed A LOT and decided to move to Clarksville and accept the position (I'll have Ben tell a little bit more about the church and the position later).

This transition is so bittersweet for us... we are so excited and so sad at the same time. On one hand, we are moving back home (though we have been in KY for 3 years TN has that special place in our hearts). We are going to be close to our families and the job at the church is the type of position that we thought we wouldn't be able to get until we had been out of seminary a few years. But, on the other hand, we hate to leave our little nest in Taylorsville. We really feel that our little church is our family. We have built so many great relationships with so many wonderful, caring people. The Lord is also working in a mighty way at Little Mount. For start, we have had 9 youth come to Christ since the summer and new families have been visiting and joining. Though we know that God receives all the glory for these things and that it is not us that has caused these things to happen, it is hard to leave where the Lord is at work.

Also on the list of crazy thing we have done is the last month is buying a house. Here's a picture of our new home...

We certainly had no intentions of buying a house so soon, but the week after we looked at it we got a call from the owner (who went to kindergarten with Ben) saying that someone had put an offer on the house. We knew if we wanted it we had to move then. Let me just say that the next day was the just about the most stressful day ever. I couldn't sleep that night. I just kept thinking "Dave Ramsey would call us crazy!" The next morning I had about talked Ben into backing out and not sending in the contract. Ben spent the day on the phone with his dad and the mortgage broker and crunching numbers and we decided to take the plunge. We close on November 19... I'll post more pictures of the house then. We won't actually move until December 14th, so we'll have time do some work on the house before we move.

I guess that's all our big news, I'll do better about posting more often and not springing so much on you at once... I know it's a lot to take in.
Made by Lena