Monday, June 3, 2013

Absence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder...

Or it makes your mind wonder.  I have had plenty of people ask me why I am not blogging anymore, which while I am flattered, I am also at a loss.  I eluded to something a couple months ago, I said that God was doing something in me, and well, actually, he is doing something in my whole family.

I am not one to be vague, or leave things open ended.  I am a storyteller, I share my story, I am open about everything, and I mean everything.  Why would God give me a story if I wasn't going to share it or be redeemed by it?  That's how I look at it.

So why the silence?  Well truthfully, it's just a lot to take in.  I am still taking it in and it's my life.  Now you all are thinking the worse, and it's not.  It's actually one of the most exciting adventures I have ever been on.

Here's what I can say right now...

About 2 years ago Eric and I started praying about the future of our ministry, what did it look like, what roles would we be in, should we plant a church or just stay part of a church plant {big difference there}.  So we prayed and did not actively seek anything other than God's will for our family and ministry.  A year ago we attended a conference largely known for church planters, met some people, talked to some people, prayed some more, and made a commitment to stay where we are for another year.

During this last year I had to make some tough choices and I went through a very low season in my life.  I felt wrecked and broken in many ways.  But with the awesome support of friends, family, and of course God, I made it through, and I even ran a half marathon to prove to myself that I am still strong.  I feel redeemed and more alive now than I did a year ago. 

Fast forward to Christmas 2012, Eric and I were back in Ohio with the girls.  Eric and I left for a quick 24 hour getaway.  On the way back to my in-laws Eric and I both felt something in the pits of our stomachs, something we had never felt before and we both knew it was the Holy Spirit making us discontent.  Discontent in a good, challenging way.  Like get out of your comfort zone and do something way.  We both right away were like are you feeling this?  What is this?  We both felt called back to Ohio.  I can't explain it unless you have felt this holy discontent feeling before, and it wasn't the Skyline we ate for lunch, it was straight from God.  So we knew we had to do something about it.

We came back from Christmas and we started pursuing getting back to Ohio.  Then Eric came home on a Tuesday evening in January, about 20 minutes before our small group was due to arrive for study and proclaimed "God is calling us to plant a church."  Amidst all the cleaning and trying to get supper on the table I am sure I gave him a "you are crazy look" and handed him a paper towel with instructions to clean the counter.  He stopped me and said "God is telling me it's time for us to plant a church, and we are planting one in Ohio."  Now, if you are not a follower of Jesus you may be thinking we are crazy, we drank the kool-aid.  We may be a little bit crazy, but I promise you we aren't and Eric is following God's prompting.  We tabled the discussion until after our group left and things I had been praying about for 2 years for Eric started coming out of his mouth.  Signs of affirmation that this was truly from God were so clear to me, I was ready to pack up the next day!  But as we have found out over the last 6 months, church planting is not that cut and dry.  Just because you are willing and able to go, God still tells you to stay.

So here is what I can tell you all right now...

We are still pursuing planting a church in Ohio, we actually leave June 10th to go to a church planting assessment to make sure we are qualified and not too crazy to do this.  We are working with an amazing church planting organization that wants to plant a church with us.  We knew we needed to sell our house, and we did, in one day, with 3 offers, so we will be basement dwellers in a friend's house come July.

Here is another thing I want you all to know, our church, The Ridge, has been great to us through this whole process.  Not everyone there knows we are leaving, or now you do if you are reading this, but those that do know have been nothing but supportive.  Eric and I would not be equipped to lead a church without the experience and relationships we have had at The Ridge.  We do not take one moment for granted there, and we will cherish all of our memories from The Ridge for a very long time.

So if I may ask for prayer, it would be for the next step in the church planting process...our assessment.  It's going to be tough, it's going to be mentally draining and push us to our limits.  Would you pray for us?  Once we pass the assessment then things with the church planting organization we are working with will get very serious, very fast, and we will have a lot more decisions to make in the next month.

Right now I am feeling a little anxious, a little overwhelmed, very excited, and overcome with gratitude that Eric and I get to be a part of a new church.  We will be helping people find and follow God for the first time, we will be showing Christ's love to a new city and our prayer is to impact that city in a whole new way.

So that's about it in a nutshell...        

5 comments:

Kelly said...

Wow! That's awesome! Praying for your family as you follow this new path.

Kait said...

Kate, I can't wait to see your family go through this journey. The Lord placed planting on our heart too!

Leann Spruell said...

Really excited for you, Eric & the girls!

Kristin said...

You know I'm so excited for y'all and can't wait to follow this journey with you. Praying for everything. I know God has it all planned out and I can't wait to see how it unfolds!!

Messy Mom said...

Wooh! Big stuff, and boy do I relate. The selling the house within days (total miracle), moving to OHIO, and living in a basement. That's us. Although it's different circumstances I can imagine what you must be feeling. Big things ahead. I can't wait to see what God does through all of this!