As opposed to last week, I worked with a new guy all week and went home early three of the five days of the week, getting extra time in the afternoon with Lucas and Andi. I also had extra help from one of the employee’s kids, but they were working for free. They got a special lunch out with their parents after two days working with me. Thanks to the Whitlock crew for your help.
This week I have been thinking about how I need to prepare more for our upcoming mission work. I went to Bible college, sure, and I got a 4-year degree, but what am I missing that will help me apply what I have in my head? I need hands-on experience in order to flesh out the lessons learned, but until then are there things I need to do? I think there are, and I need to begin working on those things, Just working a “regular job” and trying to be a witness to my co-workers and customers is good, but I found that I could be forgetting what is to come just because I don’t spend enough time thinking and working on mission stuff.
So I am trying to learn how to keep the big picture in perspective, all the while living the day-to-day grind of a “normal job”. Balance is interesting, and learning it takes time and work…
This last week has been interesting for me and my family. God gave us a great opportunity to present our mission dreams of working with Pioneer Bible Translators to a church in Andi’s hometown. We did that, and were on a road trip from there to Chicago the next day doing work for my job (The Cabinet Place). As God worked it out, Andi’s cousin Kayci lost her battle with cancer that evening (Tuesday) while we were meeting with the mission committee of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. Andi was able to go from there to the hospital and be with her family that evening. The next morning we had a trip straight to Chicago to unload cabinets at an auction and then back to Converse. So we had plenty of time to think.
It just makes me marvel at the way God works things out. Months ago Andi mentioned that she was afraid of not being around when Kayci died. Her family is very important to her, and we just happened to be in town on a mission trip when that happened. And again, the coming weekend (today) we were planning on being in Richmond again to celebrate with another cousin who is getting married over the summer. So we had travel plans in place earlier, and God arranged that we would be in town for the family to be together. We went to the memorial service, and afterwards Andi was able to go to the bridal shower. All of it worked out well, and here I am reflecting on how big my Creator is. As Keith said during the memorial service, God is here with us helping us through in the middle of a nuclear disaster mixed with earthquake and tsunami damage in Japan, a struggling economy, mixed-up military plans, and non-existent budgets in our government. But God wants a place in our lives, and he arranged our plans more than a month in advance and worked the whole thing out so we would already be in Richmond when the family needed us. Thank God for his all-knowing power.
Trying to make sense of God, his timing, and why he chooses to arrange things so we, his creation, can enjoy life. Shouldn’t it be all about God and what He wants? Ultimately, yes, and so we serve him with our life. But he wants us to have LIFE, and life MORE abuntantly.
This last week was a full one. I have been spending more time than I sometimes wish working. There are times I want to hang up the jobs all the way and just be home with Andi and Lucas. I know I am blessing them by providing for them, as well as taking care of people at work. It will pay off, but some weeks it’s difficult.
We are pursuing an internship with Pioneer Bible Translators. They sent us a packet of information about what we need to do in order to apply, and we are finally nearing the completion of that process. We hope to send our application, complete with psychological evaluations, by the end of this week. That will give our references time to send in their information and our transcripts to arrive as well. That is our hope, and we are praying that we will have news about it soon.
Lucas is talking to me (“Dada…dada…”) and Andi (“Mama…mama…”) and today he said “Nana”, which is my mom’s name to him. He is a delight to watch grow, and we are blessed to have the roles in his life that we do. Thanks for keeping up with us.