Before You Call, I Will Answer!

As most of my readers know, my family and I have transitioned to a church ministry in MD. About three months ago, we reluctantly and ‘faith-scrapingly’ (that’s the existential process of scraping together all the faith you can muster by recalling all the past ways that God has been faithful and claiming every relevant promise in the Scriptures) followed God’s leading to leave our beloved church in Chicagoland and move to Maryland. Associated with the transition of getting used to a new church culture, work environment, and lifestyle in MD, we had to deal with the stress of packing, moving, and the dreaded sale of our home in a depressed and horrible housing market in Chicago (forget about even looking for a house in MD!)

After a savings account draining four months of paying mortgage on a house we weren’t living in, we finally had an offer on our home. As divine providence would have it, the same day I was slated to start at the new church! The last month since the agreed upon contract has been a stressful roller coaster of inspections, repairs, documents, haggling, and praying. I knew we weren’t underwater on our home, but the selling price of our home – after closing costs and real estate commissions – was low enough that we knew we would have to take money to closing. When I first talked the selling price over with my realtor, she estimated that we would need about $2500-$3000 to take to closing. So we have been earmarking that amount in the last month. Little did I know that the Lord would use this process to show me his power, the love of His people, and to write people into our story of faith and obedience. Continue reading

Learning from a True Hero

This past Saturday, I had the unexpected joy of serving an elderly gentleman, Bill Scott, alongside two other members of our church – Mark and Dustin. Mr. Scott lives in a 175-year old house in a little corner of Laurel, MD. What I thought would be some kitchen work turned into having to tear out the entire floor of his kitchen (which had sunk down about 3 feet!) and laying some new joists. I was completely blown away and blessed by the five hours I spent there. In order describe how, I need to give some context.  Continue reading

A Father’s Day to Die For

Greetings from Maryland! We landed here on the evening of June 16th just in time to visit our new church home and celebrate Father’s Day yesterday. It was my fourth father’s day and first in Maryland. Due to the extreme circumstances of an interstate move, we didn’t have much time to think about, let alone plan a father’s day gathering. My insightful wife asked me several times about plans for celebrating Father’s Day (not just for me, but also for our family’s patriarchs – my dad and hers), but the answers to those questions were lost amidst the thousand small decisions of where to put boxes, how to pack that odd-shaped toy, etc.

I spent Father’s Day at Grace Community Church, meeting new faces and familiar faces, and overwhelmed by the goodness of God to lead me to such a great church. What a privilege and awesome responsibility! Thank the Lord that He who calls qualifies, and He who leads, prepares. After a quick lunch, everyone seemed to take a nap, and I happily watched live soccer (Euro 2012) on live broadcast TV for the first time in years. Continue reading