Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Movin' On Up

Jasper Speaks:

I transitioned today from an in training person to a full fledge CST at ERAC. Mostly that just means I am on target for my first promotion and raise for May 1. I PRAY DESPERATELY that I will not still be there then. T-minus 30 hours until my next Camp Coca Cola interview!

I am getting excited about the opportunities for minsitry at Heartland. The pastor has made a few suggestions of places we might serve. One of which is doing a new believers kind of home Bible study. I think I would really like that. I am praying about the choices ahead. Mostly I am still riding high on the fact that I am in a church and I feel so good about it!
The Journey Continues

Jasper Speaks:

I am learning a lot about myself and about God lately. I am learning that I am a terribly impatient person. I want what I want and I want it NOW! I am learning that God prefers to watch us wait and see how well we handle the stress. At once that can be frustrating and humbling for me.

I think we have really found the church where we are supposed to heal. Heartland Baptist Church is a great community of believers. Henry Blackaby says, find a place where God is at work and get involved. For us, I think Heartland is that place. It is refreshing to worship in a church that holds the Bible in high regard but can also think outside of the box in ministry. For the first time in years I am anxious and excited about going to a worship service. God is really working there and I am longing to get in the door in a great way and find out how he can use me.

I am finding that I want to be an encouragement to my Pastor. For years I was on the other side of the pulpit and I know how hard it can get to be there. I love the pastor, Darren Casper, at Heartland. he has a heart for God and articulates that heart so well from the pulpit. I have really been fed by what he has to share on Sunday mornings. The music worship is also encouraging.

We are hoping to find our niche with friends there. That so far has been the missing link for us. I am praying that God will open doors there soon for us.

Still, I think that God is teaching us so much about what it feels like to be on the outside of a church ministry. The struggles with finding your place can be hard. I think He is also teaching us to appreciate life in the ministry. I think I often took it for granted. I am seeing what a priviledge it really is.

There is so much more to be learned on this road that God has set out for us. It is not always easy to learn the lessons He has planned for us. In fact a lot of the times I am not very happy to be in the spiritual classroom like this. Yet, I am feeling a closeness and connection with the Creator that I have not felt in quite some time. I have regrets in my past, but I know that if I am pursuing holiness, that spiritually the future for me can be very bright. It is exciting to see God move in both my life and Kendra's as well. The journey has not just begun but this stretch of the road is looking as though it could really be a faith defining time of growth and exploration. We are hanging on for dear life and know the ride will never be boring.

Monday, February 28, 2005

The Week Has Begun

Jasper Speaks:

Yesterday our friends Keith and Natalie went to church with us. They used to go to FBC Lemay the church that I served at here in St. Louis but there had been sometime since they last attended. They are my age and the church they were attending they were the youngest people by 30 years or so.

We all went to Sunday School together. I was a bit concerned with the theology of the class. The teacher was saying we should never pray in God's will. He says it shows a lack of faith. Of course I did not agree and spoke up. The teacher never agreed. I am not sure if we will go back to the class or not. We have not really felt comfortable there. We want to make friends at church but this class so far has not seemed to be where that will happen. It isn't that we don't like the people it is just no one has really talked to us much.

The service was the end of the church's D-Now weekend. It was my first service where youth were made prominent since we left our groun Maine. It was a bit difficult. Oddly enough I started crying during Every Move I Make. It was a standard of our group in Maine and it really tugged at me. I miss youth ministry so much. Then the idea that I was to start my cruddy schedule at Enterprise last night as well didn't help.

Speaking of that, I did my first shift last night. It really dragged by. We will see how it all goes in the long run. Ninety days of this doesn't thrill me.

That's about all from here right now. Please keep praying that God will open up job doors for Kendra and I. I am still waiting to hear from Camp Coke. We will see!