So my sabbatical time in January has come and gone, and I am back in the game at Oregon Trail Church of God. Last Sunday I shared with the church a few reflections from my time away, and I will pass them on to you here as well.
There were 3 pre-determined aspects:
- Visit other churches
- This was very fruitful and I enjoyed interviewing pastors and visiting their churches. I can honestly say that I felt God’s presence and witnessed Him working in every church I attended. They were all different sizes, styles, and targeted audiences; but are all accomplishing great things for God’s kingdom.
- Start a new book
- Started is the key word here. I was definitely reminded how much work it is to write a book. After taking a few year hiatus from consistently writing it was hard to get back into any kind of rhythm. However I did make progress on the book, enough that I need to evaluate my true intensions with it before doing much more. Self publish again? Seek a traditional publisher?…I don’t know.
- Ski a lot
- Thanks to our lack of snow this winter, this did not materialize as hoped. However I did enjoy two good powder days with good friends, so that is a definite win!
I also completed some home projects, built some furniture, read a few books, and did a lot of praying and reflecting.
The major overall takeaway for me was three fold:
- I needed this time more than I first realized
- I can’t imagine doing anything else right now other than pastoring this church
- I am very excited for what the upcoming months and years holds
The hardest part of my sabbatical was surrounding our adoption. I expected this to be a time of completion, God showed me it was really a time of preparation. God and I had a lot of conversations about this. I am happy to say that God was not silent, however He didn’t say what I wanted to hear. There were two songs that God used to work on my heart with:
Hopefully these songs might help you as much as they did me.
Maureen and I are still hopeful that God will complete what He has started, we have faith that God will complete our family, we just don’t know when or how. Even through the disappointment and struggle I can truthfully say that my heart has arrived at being able to say “Thy will be done” and “It is well with my soul” regarding God’s plan for this adoption – it has taken me a while to get there.
In the mean time, here is our family profile (again), so please spread it around as much as you can. This is the most recently updated version, so even if you have looked before, please look at it again. We are relying on word of mouth and God to connect us to our baby girl. Thank you to those that continue to pray and share our profile over and over again.