I guess that's not really an update, is it?
First, let me just say, "Thank you." Leona and I greatly appreciate all of the prayers, comments, emails and phone calls. It really means a lot to us. Your prayers have been greatly sensed over the last few days, and have made an incredible difference.
So, what the fat is going on, you ask?
Well, that's a little hard to describe, really. Basically, on Friday I was at a really low place, emotionally, physically and spiritually. Discouragement has hit Leona and me from a variety of angles over the past few days: From finances to health issues to changes in our team to some important deadlines that were missed to a number of other things,...well, it's been a little rough.
Frankly, when I posted the request for prayer, I had just had it and essentially I felt like giving up. I hate that. "Give up" is not really in my vocabulary. My pride almost kept me from posting the request, but my smart and beautiful wife said, "Just post it. We need people to pray for us."
She was right, of course.
There were too many things hitting all at once, too many burdens, too little margin, and all at a time that seems too close to victory. But that's the way growth happens sometimes: Darkest before the dawn; pain before the breakthrough; struggle before freedom.
I am convinced that through that process the enemy is also determined to frustrate, discourage and bring down any and all who would seek to follow the Lord's call. He always attempts to stand between us and God and point fingers and accuse. Being the burning sticks we are, plucked from the fire as it were, God rejects those accusations and in spite of it all offers to cover us in fresh new clothes. [Zechariah 3]
Hope is a sweet and powerful thing. When it seems to disappear, it's a bitter bite.
This is not exactly a news flash. It's part of the journey. A journey that is definitely not meant to be traveled alone.
And that's why your prayers and encouragement have been so important to me and my family. It's humbling to ask for prayer, to disappear for a few days, to hope people really are praying and then to come back and try to explain the scoop in vague terms with words of thanks. But I know it's important.
Of course, I've always known this, but I do realize now more than ever before how much I need a vast and fervant prayer team to accomplish the task before me - how much our church needs a vast and fervant prayer team to accomplish the task before us. All of the challenges have not gone away. There are still some big ones ahead, but we have them a bit more in perspective, now.
God is a big God. He very much knows what He's doing, even when I sometimes don't.
We're ok. We're still standing. We're still going forward. We still need your prayers.
And now with eyes wide open, we're also praying more fervently for you.