Oh the highs and lows of changes....the past two years have made me a wee bit seasick there have been so many! The strange thing about change is that even the great high of a happy change carries with it the great low of having to stretch yourself to adapt. Life, however, is all about changing and adapting. If I didn't know that I know that GOD NEVER CHANGES I would fall apart, that is for sure!
A wee bit over a year ago, we had the happy change of taking on a second congregation, changing our two separate churches into Truelife church, one church with two locations...one here in Portland and one in Vancouver. While all of this was going on we had the happy change of baby granddaughter arriving on the scene. This happened while middle daughter, son-in-law, and oldest granddaughter and only grandson were gone for two months on a missions trip to Ghana. Happy for them, lonesome for this nana. Youngest daughter was floundering, not spiritually, but she was not sure of God's will and direction at that time.
Fast forward to now...
Starting from youngest daughter...In the fall, she went to International House of Prayer for a three month commission, hoping to really touch God for herself, and get some direction for her life. She is now completing her sixth month there, having returned after commission to do an internship for a staff position. She is now actively seeking financial support, as she will be on staff at I.H.O.P. and be a missionary to the 24/7 prayer and justice movement in our nation's heartland. My mini-me not near by...a BIG adjustment.
Middle daughter...activiely seeking financial support and making plans for their family to return to Kumasi, Ghana as full time missionaries. This is her lifelong dream and calling. This mama/nana soooo wants to see them fulfill God's call and purposes for their lives, but those precious grandbabies so far away.....that is a BIG adjustment that we are having to make in our minds and hearts in preparation for the reality.
Oldest daughter....She and her hubby have been our right hand for the past 11 years in our church in Portland. About two years ago they felt God speaking to them to plant a church, but then the whole two congregations happened, and they put their plans on hold, waited, prayed...and came to us again right before this past Christmas wondering if it was time yet. Location? Unknown. But, it looked as though it would be at least three hours away. And that, my bloggie friends, JUST ABOUT SUNK THIS MAMA/NANA'S BOAT! So I did the only thing I know to do...I prayed and prayed and prayed some more. I put them on the altar, so to speak. I surrendered them to God's will. The next day I would take them off the altar and BEG GOD TO LEAVE ME AT LEAST ONE GRANDBABY NEAR ME! I'm just being real here. I even held baby granddaughter's hands and prayed the prayer of agreement about that one.
Church...in the meanwhile, the whole rushing between Portland and Vancouver on Sunday mornings wasn't really working for this pastor and pastor's wife. We were feeling the heart tug of leaving one congregation at the altar while rushing to a service already half way over to the other congregation. With our relationally driven ministry, it just wasn't workin' for us. In the meanwhile, the majority of our congregation had moved to Vancouver due to the much more affordable housing costs. Merge services with both congregations together were dynamic. People began to come and ask us why we didn't meet together all of the time. GOOD QUESTION!
This brings us up to now...Truelife Church is officially merging into one church, one location. We will officially meet together in Vancouver starting Easter Sunday! And in approximately a year, oldest daughter and son-in-law, (and baby granddaugher), will be church planting HERE in southeast Portland!!!
CHANGES! What a wild ride...I think I need some Dramamine!
In the meanwhile, I must get to studying for tomorrow night's Awakened Hearts Bible study done. But, my desk looks like this...
At least life's not boring!