Almost a year ago my husband came to me and said he thought God was calling him to be a Pastor. I was less than thrilled. I was also skeptical. I admit, I was growing tired of living in a fifth wheel, traveling, and not having a home. But taking a church? That was a little bit much for me.
We didn't talk about it much after that, he would just casually mention it every once in a while. I told him I would follow him wherever he decided to go, but I didn't feel like God wanted me to be a Pastor's Wife! I didn't feel properly equipped.
When we went to Mississippi everything went wrong. Caleb kept getting hurt or sick, our children were fighting like crazy, Noah has started to have problems with sharing a room with his sisters, and I started to feel claustrophobic living in this trailer.
So I started praying about it, and God started to speak to my heart and He showed me a lot of things that I would like to share in a later blog; too much for right now!
In January we visited a church near where we were working in Mississippi and the Pastor preached on serving God and one of his main points was that we need more men to step up and be a Pastor. I just KNEW God was talking to my husband. And I couldn't deny God's working power, so that night I quietly told God that if Caleb talked to me about it again, I would be open and willing to follow him.
Well, he did, and I did, and we started praying that God would work things out, and that He would give us clear direction in leaving NTCP, USA and looking for a church to Pastor. Our burden was for small churches that would close if they didn't get a Pastor. We didn't want a cushy Pastor's job where we could relax. We wanted to serve and be used by the Lord.
When we came home the end of February we immediately took our Pastor (Caleb's Dad) and wife our for dinner. We told them that we wanted to look for a church to Pastor and Mom started laughing and said "I knew God wanted you to do that last time you were here!" That confirmed it in our hearts, that this was what God wanted. We had to go through a process of speaking to people in authoritative positions over us, and Caleb's knee injury gave us a good excuse to be home for a month or so, and not be doing any work. Everyone we talked to was on board and excited, and we just kept getting more and more excited! When we told our kids, it was like we were telling them we were going to Disney World! Kayla said "I've always wanted to be a Pastor's Kid!!"
We started praying about where God would want us, and Caleb and his Dad called different men to see if they knew of a church that needed a Pastor. We felt like God wanted us to stay in the Midwest, but we weren't limiting ourselves to that.
At the beginning of April a Pastor friend gave Caleb a number of a church in Missouri that needed a Pastor. He called, and they asked us to come candidate that Sunday! So we drove out there for the weekend and it was not what we expected. The church was extremely friendly but it didn't seem like the "struggling church" we had pictured in our mind. Plus it seemed like everyone was really eager to vote us in and it scared me. Was this too fast? Do we want to take the first church we candidate? Are we sure this is what God wants? We went home very unsure of what God wanted. They were going to vote that weekend, one week from when we had first heard of the church.
In my heart, I was hoping they would vote no because it was too fast, and I was too unsure. They ended up voting to have us come back for another weekend, so we did. The second weekend we went was completely different, in my heart. A few families were more open, and they shared with us some struggles the church is going through. The church decided to have us stay through Wednesday with preaching every night, and we had meals with the members before service.
I had a few questions, and some concerns, that I was praying God would settle in my heart. Some of them are personal, but some of them I might share in a later blog. And some of them, I didn't even know I had, but once it was discussed, I felt a huge burden lift. I'll just tell you that after Tuesday night, I went to bed knowing 100% that this church was where God wanted us, and I went to bed excited and overflowing with God's love and peace for where He was leading our family!
Wednesday night I was a ball of nerves, the church was going to vote on whether or not to call us. I could barely eat dinner, and I was having a hard time talking to anybody. It was like the huge elephant in the room that nobody wanted to discuss. The service was amazing and Caleb preached an awesome message, finalizing his Facing and Defeating Your Giants series he did that week. We left the auditorium and they had their meeting, and when they called us back in, I thought I was going to faint!
One of the things we were praying for was that we would get voted in 90% or more. We had several people tell us that number was impossible, that maybe we should consider a lower number. Caleb said if the vote was yes with a smaller number, we would still consider, but he really wanted that number. Well guess what, we got 92%! God did more than we asked, just to prove that He can!
Our last Sunday at Lighthouse Baptist Church in Mustang, OK is June 10th, and the next day we are going to officially move to Mound Baptist Church near Oldfield, MO. It's in the middle of nowhere, in beautiful Ozark, dairy country. I will give more details later.
Never doubt what God wants you to do. And don't be afraid to ask for confirmation either. God doesn't want us stumbling through life, unsure of what He wants, trying one thing after another. He is willing to give us perfect peace and rest, and He won't ask you to do something He won't equip you to do!