Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Just a Personal Note

Last week began with a bang to say the least…or maybe it would be better to say a headache and then a crash, in that order. Without going into a great deal of detail,  on Sunday night as Michele and I were getting ready for bed I told her how much I was dreading the upcoming week. We were in a situation that I was praying for truth to be clearly revealed but, knew it would take some time and probably a great deal of frustration for this to take place. Monday was as difficult as I expected - before our day really even began we had a dear friend who was with us in a meeting get word that someone in their family had died...and that seemed to set the tone for how the day would go.  The pressure was nothing less that incredible with what we faced for the rest of the day (actually the whole week). On top of all this, we were a typical two car family getting used to being a one car family for the week because my truck was being fixed - having to go four different directions at any one time and trying to figure out what we could and could not do. When someone dropped me off at home Monday evening, Michele and boys were on their way out going to the boy's class, and I told her that I was going to run a few miles. Five miles later, and then after my fourth phone conversation in less than an hour, my wife calls and informs me they are on their way home. Literally 5 minutes after this call I get another call from her phone telling me that she and boys were in an accident. Long story short, Joshua (our youngest) was knocked out briefly, the ambulance came and our car was totaled. This was all just on the Monday of the week I was dreading. In short, this week was starting even worse than I had expected!  Somehow though, this week was shaping up just the way the Father expected - whether it was on our timetable and itinerary or not!  Rather than covering each day and the difficulties I want to just share with you a few things I learned.

God always supplies: When this wreck happened, the first responders; both the fireman and the EMT were members of our church and brought calmness to the situation not only to my boys, but also to my wife (thank you Craig and Diane).  In the middle of a very difficult situation, my oldest son was tested and lived out many steps of manhood we have studied, talked about and learned, but that I had only hoped he had gotten.Ultimately, we were able to all come home as a family around 3am on Tuesday morning - if the week had gone worse than expected, this would STILL have been a blessing worth holding and praising our Lord!
Our church family showed incredible love and grace to my family. From one family coming by Monday to give me their car so I could go to the hospital, to literally being offered the use of 6 different cars for the week - to meals, calls, chocolate (my comfort food), people picking up my boys, wife and even me for rides, as well as for the church member who is helping me with my truck! ...to say the least, it was overwhelming love and grace that our church family showed.

It taught us to receive: It hasn’t taken 3 ½ years for people to know that I have a difficult time allowing people in our congregation to “do” for our family. Honestly, being raised in the ministry I have seen more than one minister that I felt took advantage of a generous congregation. So, we have always responded at the other end of the spectrum. Well, this time we had no other option than to let, and even ask some of our church family for help. There was never a hesitation by them and for that I am thankful.

Truth was revealed:  After almost a week of meetings and discussions, truth came bubbling forth for all to see. It did so in a way that was so clear and open that my mind was blown. God has allowed so many incredible families to be part of our Trinity Family and even brought new ones in that fit perfectly into the body and have the ability to use their gifts and even vocation for His glory and the body’s benefit.

Going into this week, I would have told you that it was going to be very difficult, and it was. But I told Michele at the end of the week, it may have been one of the greatest weeks we have ever experienced in our marriage. God allowed all the blessings listed above - He reminded me that the van can be totaled, our other car in the shop, and a difficult week can come, but the fact that all 4 of us can get in a borrowed car and come home and pray together, thanking the Lord for His grace and protection, His provision and His Bride - that is what really matters. He also made me understand that He is the source of all truth, so He will expose truth and destroy lies in His timing not mine. This is something I knew in my mind, but to experience it - to see it so clearly - to comprehend it - that is something I pray that has burned into the depths of my soul, never to be forgotten.  I need no computer monitor, not hidden agenda, no blog, no group of people to validate truth... I am just called to live it and teach it, and trust that God works all things for His glory in His timing.

There are those of you who have prayed for us, ministered to us and encouraged us in ways for which I can’t begin to even express my gratitude. But I thank you for your love!  I thank the Lord for His grace, and I am so grateful that he can take something that seems so difficult and use it for His glory. I love you and thank you for being such a blessing to me every week, but especially this week!

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