My husband and I have lived in this town, pastoring this church for two and a half years. It’s hard to believe, really. In some ways, it’s flown by. In other ways, it’s crept. In six short months, we will be celebrating our three year anniversary! Wow. I know it doesn’t seem like long to you, but you have to think of it in “church years”. You see, in “church years”, three is really eight. 🙂
We are so honored and blessed to be able to serve the Lord in this capacity. It has truly been amazing to see how He has met our needs and even some of our wants. I don’t think this blessing is because we are a pastor’s family, but often times, a pastor’s family is thrust into the position to rely upon the Lord more than those in the secular workforce. It shouldn’t be that way, but it is. Each of us only survive because of the Lord’s goodness and provision, but often, when we work in a factory (as my hubby did before pastoring), or any other job, we count on that company for our income. In the ministry, a church can only pay when God’s people give. Sometimes, a church can’t pay its pastor at all, yet God still meets the financial need of His man in amazing ways. Since being in this location, I’ve seen God give me a brand new dining room table and chairs, a new freezer, the ability to use my ice maker, a fenced in yard, and best of all, we have received a paycheck each week of our ministry here! Praise the Lord! We remember in years past, and in ministries past, when that didn’t always happen. We don’t want to take that blessing for granted.
Our church has hit a few rough spots during the past 2.5 years. There have been some very dark days. There have been days when the idea of quitting and returning to a factory job actually sounded appealing! lol! But, as soon as those thoughts crossed our minds, the Holy Spirit reminded us of why we are here: to see souls saved and lives drawn closer to the Lord. It’s no easy task, since Satan is fighting anyone who works toward these goals. We seek to be used of the Lord as He sees fit. We hope to point others to Jesus and His Word. The Lord also reminded us of the multitude of wonderful days – the blessings, the precious souls we serve, and the joy that serving Him brings. As I think back on the joyous days, it seems as though it couldn’t have possibly been that long already! At the same time, when I think of all that is yet to be done to reach our community, it seems time can’t go quickly enough! I am ready to see even more happen through our church.
Whenever I feel discouraged, the thought of Christ on calvary puts everything in perspective. We are in a five star resort compared to what He endured on the cross. I owe Him a lot more than a mere two point five years. I owe Him everything.