Well, it’s been a while since I’ve written a blog post, but since it’s Christmas, I thought it would be fun to recap things.
We returned from Malawi, May of this year. We were very sad to leave our friends on the CAPA team behind, but we still keep in touch with them and the work that is going on there. I’ve had the chance to talk with the new Hebrew instructor (one of the brand new M. Div. graduates) a couple times since I’ve left and to advise from afar. The CAPA team and work in Malawi are still very much in our hearts.
After we returned from Malawi, we got to see some good friends in LA, and we also packed up a moving truck and bought a car from some friends leaving for England to move our stuff back to Spokane. After dropping off our stuff and spending a week in Spokane, we headed to Boise where I got to do a summer pastoral internship at Heritage Bible Church.
It was great getting to know the brothers and sisters at Heritage. I got to preach twice and do a Wednesday night class on the Biblical Covenant. You can check them out here on Sermon Audio. We hope to be able to go down this next summer to do another internship.
After our time in Boise, we returned to Spokane at the start of August and began looking for apartments and work. The Lord provided an adjunct math position for me at Whitworth University through the recommendation of a good friend who works there even before we left Boise. After arriving in Spokane, the Lord also provided for us the perfect duplex rental on the north side of Spokane right in between Faith Bible Church (our home church and location of the Master’s Seminary extension campus) and Whitworth. Even though Ashley sought diligently for a job, the Lord grew us again in patience and trust as He withheld a job for over a month but then gave the perfect job with amazing health benefits and good pay (you can read here report of that adventure here).
I started seminary at the extension campus in early August and took Greek Exegesis 1, Introduction to Pastoral Counseling, Charismatic Theology (better termed Cessationist Theology 🙂 ), Mechanics of Preaching, and the History of Expository Preaching. Pastoral Counseling was taught live by our counseling pastor at Faith Bible Church, and Mechanics of Preaching was taught by our main teaching pastor. These were special classes to take since I know these men personally and have sat under their ministries.
While taking classes, I taught Precalculus and Calculus 1 at Whitworth University. I am so thankful for my math degree and for the opportunity to work to pay for seminary through that means. Really, it was another gift from our Lord Who has continually supplied all our needs.
Also, at our home church of Faith Bible Church, I got the opportunity to teach a ten week course of Old Testament Survey. This was a blast to teach as we walked through all of the OT books and connected them with God’s redemptive story line. In addition, Ashley and I began helping with our church’s college ministry. We help co-lead the Moody Aviation small group associated with that ministry, and I preach on occasion.
With all of that going on, the Fall semester ended well through God’s sustaining grace. We have been thankful to reconnect with so many dear friends and family in Spokane and at Faith Bible Church.
One of the requests that we continually were asking of the Lord this semester was for financial provision to pay for the Spring semester (and beyond) of seminary. The Lord answered that prayer in a couple ways. Ashley received an unexpected raise at her work a few weeks after beginning work there as the company she works for standardized wages across Washington State. Secondly, the last couple weeks I have been in an application/interview process to adjunct at the Moody Aviation program in Spokane. I am thankful to be able to say that I received an official offer this last Thursday (12/20) for the position! Don’t worry! I won’t be doing anything with airplanes; I’ll be teaching New Testament Survey and Hermeneutics as part of the Bible classes for the program.
In this it is amazing to see the Lord’s minute providential care. I have finished all of my hermeneutics classes already at TMS, allowing me to teach the course at Moody, and I am currently taking my New Testament Survey class as an online course, finishing just before the term starts at Moody. I will also be teaching New Testament Survey as an equipping class at our church, so there’s some great overlap there! Just more evidences of the gracious care and love by my heavenly Father.
With our current college pastor leaving for a church in Texas, Ashley and I will continue to help with the college ministry at our home church, and I will preach about four times in a rotation with other guys over this next semester. I will also have an opportunity to preach at a church in Leavenworth, Washington mid-January and to speak at a few Moody chapels.
Through all of this busyness, we both continue to learn what it means to pursue Christ as our greatest treasure and to follow Him daily. Some days we are more faithful than others, but we are continually amazed at the living and reigning Christ’s faithfulness and kindness to us. We don’t deserve it, and we don’t deserve Him, but we love Him and want to continue to grow in pleasing Him and honoring Him with our whole lives.
Here are some things you can be praying for:
- Grace to balance all the responsibilities this semester.
- Grace to bless and serve others with joy.
- Greater dependence on Christ’s resources and not our own.
- Wisdom and direction for the future in where the Lord would have us serve long-term in His church while still being faithful today.
- Growth in elder-qualified character (cf. 1 Tim 3, Titus 1)
- Provision for finances for future semesters of seminary.