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Monday, July 23, 2012

Six Months Out: A Look Back!

I was thinking the other day how short six months really is. When I was living and ministering in north Minneapolis, I remember when people who were new on the scene and had a passion to help change the city, and I remember my message to them. I would tell them slow down, people have to get to know you, learn to trust you, and make sure you are for real before you will be able to do what you want to do here. I remember that coming in and pushing an agenda and trying to make something happen without putting your time in building relationships tended to rub people the wrong way and trying to gain something back was more difficult. Yet here I sit, six months into our move to Tucson, feeling like I should be further along.

God's timing is not our timing. And He is very patient with us. His plans tend to work out according to His time table and rarely does it line up with ours. Apparently I have forgotten everything I used to say for advice to those moving into a new neighborhood, a new culture. If God led you here, then be patient and learn the culture. God reminded me of my own words this week and it gave me some sense of peace knowing that I am walking according to His plan, and once again I am free from having to produce results. That is His job.

So where are we now? Jean is a few weeks into her new job. She is an inclusion specialist at Cottonwood elementary school. This position gives her direct influence over 10 students and 11 para-professionals. It is definitely an adjustment for our family having her working full-time. But despite the long hours she assures me, she loves her job. She commutes to work on a scooter and loves it. That is one of the blessings of living in Arizona. If it isn't raining, you can go on two wheels.

The kids started school last week and are enjoying getting to know there new teachers and class mates. Hopefully, we won't be switching schools on them any time soon and they will be able to get into a groove. They all played baseball this past spring and loved it. There is always something going on in the apartment complex where we live and there is rarely a time they can't find a group of kids to play with. It kind of reminds us of our neighborhood back in Minneapolis. They have practically lived at the pool and are darker than probably a lot of their friends from Minneapolis. We are certainly outgrowing our apartment fast and are seeking other arrangements down the road. Now that we know where God has planted us and we have a specific geographical part of town to focus on, we can begin looking for housing opportunities.

As for me, I am quite the domestic spouse . . .NOT! I am learning to manage every one's schedule, taking more of an active role advocating for the kids. I am handling all the cooking, cleaning, homework, and laundry duties. At the same time, I have been serving others as needs have popped up. I am still ministering regularly at the Gospel Rescue Mission and have been allowed to take a more active role in ministry at our church as well. And I am starting a handy-man business. The Lord impressed this on me since I have been here. This will enable me to serve my community, build a network, and disciple men who are skilled laborers but having trouble finding work. I told the Lord how crazy that was for ME to be a handy-man. His response was humorous: Was it any more crazy than packing your family and moving without knowing where you were going? How did that turn out? Was it any more crazy than shutting down Community of Men and letting my income go with no plan in place to replace it? Well when you put it like that Lord it's not crazy at all.

So let's see what the next six months hold. More adventure as we follow our path down God's plan. I am so grateful for His invitation to journey with Him on it. 

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the update, Brad. It's exciting to see all that God is opening up for you guys down there.