WOW! This has been a long and eventful summer! As we move into fall, here’s what’s going on…
First, I have come to agree with my new pastor in Culiacán: I need to settle down and reestablish “normal” before heading down into full-time ministry. Since my July re-arrival in Ohio, good things are happening. Following my traumatic experiences in May/June, my panic attacks have now stopped, and my fears are under control again. I’ve rediscovered how to fully trust in God, ceding control to Him, and He’s working out everything for my good (Romans 8:28 – one of my favorite verses).
The second newsworthy item was the Celebrate Recovery Summit in California, August 10-12. In the midst of settling down, I made a trip back to the West Coast for a 3 day conference. It was absolutely incredible! My hope was simply to glean new tips and confidence for starting a Celebrate Recovery program once I move to Culiacán. While I did get that, God also worked in my life personally and did an amazing new thing in me. I left not only professionally equipped, but personally restored! Celebrate Recovery is a never-ending journey toward being like Jesus… and this conference helped me take one more giant step closer.
At the same time, however, my living arrangements grew unstable. Arriving from the conference, I was given a move-out date. As a result, my move to Culiacán will also be delayed a few months more. I need to find peace, serving contentedly for a while, before making the big move. And as always, God is faithful, and has provided new living arrangements for me. We moved on September 14 (6th time in 6 months, and hopefully the last before Culiacán!).
Through all the “chaos,” God is bringing order. I not only found a Celebrate Recovery group here in Ohio, but one that accepted me readily into their leadership and is preparing me to start my own program. In addition, my home church wants to start a Celebrate Recovery program, and it looks like I’ll get to help! I will probably be leading a Celebrate Recovery step study soon, and participating in “The Journey Continues,” a second step study for those who have completed the first.
Even though I’m not WHERE God has ultimately called me, I’m definitely on the right road. He’s got plenty for me to do while I’m here… and all of it is strengthening, restoring, and perfectly preparing me for my work in Culiacán. God is good! To Him be all the glory!