Saturday, October 11, 2008


My family and I are now living in Southern California. How did that happen? It’s an amazing story and I’d like to share it with you because in the events that led to this move I have seen the amazingly powerful hand of God work as clearly as I ever have.

Last November (2007) Mia and I sat down and began to take stock of our lives. Our oldest son, Aaron, was living in Lake Tahoe. Number two son, Caleb, was studying up in Sault Ste Marie, MI at Lake Superior State University. And son number three, John, was in the Air Force and getting ready for his first deployment to Iraq. Only Ben, Elizabeth, Anna, and Mary were home with us. Ben was working full time because we had run out of money for college. Beth was a junior in high school and Anna and Mary were 8th graders. We realized that kids were going to start leaving our home in droves before long. Where would be the place they would come back to? Where would we be settled?

Mia and I also had to consider our situation with our church, Shiloh Community Church. We were in our fourth year of existence as a church. We had “plateaued” in attendance. The church was going great. It was just too small. Our family was experiencing serious financial issues. And the school where our church met would not be available to us after June, 2008. We would have to find another place to rent, buy a building, or build something. Here were two large financial commitments for a small church, the pastor’s family and a meeting place. Would we be able to meet both of these commitments?

I decided to update my resume and send it out to a number of my friends and see what the Lord might do. The resumes went out in late November. We prayed and prayed that the Lord would show us where he wanted us to be. It was our deepest wish that he would somehow allow us to stay at Shiloh. I loved the people. We were happy there. We had poured four years of our ministry lives into that church and didn’t want to move.

I’ll be honest. The phone didn’t start to ring off the hook. It seemed as if I had fallen into a black hole and nobody was interested. That was ok with us. We believed the Lord could do miracles and make it possible for us to stay at Shiloh. One friend in an American Baptist Church sent my resume to his district executive and Mia and I met with him in December. It was a good meeting and we began to wonder if we would become American Baptists. He sent my resume to several churches in Michigan. At the end of December we heard from one of them. I was leaving for India for three weeks and we agreed to talk upon my return.

A church in my parents’ home town in Southern California contacted me and we talked on the phone a couple of times. I had another contact from Southern California to serve as a staff pastor part time. Also, a Christian school in SoCal was interested in having me come to teach. I went to India.


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