Thursday, March 24, 2016

Gearing Up

With our first monthly service planned for May 1st, things are getting real here in Jamestown. 

Here are a few praises from the last month:

-We have found an awesome worship leader who is willing to make the trip from Buffalo each month to lead the services this spring and summer!

-The drywall is up in the sanctuary and entry area, and we have another wonderful mission team coming from Tallassee next week to paint these ginormous rooms!

-We have signs!

Please pray for the mission team who is traveling to Jamestown from Alabama this week. Please pray that they will be encouraged and strengthened through this trip and that they are very productive during their stay.

There are many details that we have to get figured out such as lighting, paint colors, bathroom improvements, and childcare rooms. Please pray for wisdom as we try to make good choices that communicate a message of hope to those who attend. Although these decisions aren't especially difficult or weighty, it's a little daunting to make them alone, knowing that they will send a message to the people who enter this space. 

We have billboards that will go in April. Please pray that they will be received with interest and will pave the way for meaningful, personal relationships in the future.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

The Long Run

So here's the thing: I don't run. 

I mean, I have run. I ran a couple of 5ks two years ago, and then I retired my running shoes because they seemed overwhelmed by the whole thing. Plus my legs hurt, but it was really the shoes. Seriously.

I love the idea of running. It seems super "I'm striving to be a good steward of my body" without being pretentious. The reality of running is where I get stuck. I don't think that God really designed my muscles for running. 

If you remember when Michael Phelps was the rage, you may recall the human interest pieces describing the ways that his body was made to swim. Ridiculously long arms and wide hands combined with double jointed ankles and short legs make him the picture of an ideal competitive swimmer.

I'm a lot like that when it comes to running, except the opposite. I have what I call "inverted bow legs". Other people call it "knobby knees", but what it comes down to is that my weight rests on my knees more than my feet. I tend to pull my thigh muscles really easily. 

But then we went to Disney during a runDisney weekend, and everyone seemed really happy about it. I mean, if you're going to run, it makes sense to run with Disney princesses cheering you on. While at the airport, we heard two women talking about participating in the Glass Slipper Challenge. It requires participants to run a 10k on Friday and then a half marathon on Saturday. That's just under 20 miles. And these two chicks seemed really happy about it.

I want to be happy, too.

So I decided to give it a go. It's about a year off, and there are tons of local runs ranging from 5k to a half marathon in the fall. I can do that, right? It also seems like a good opportunity to become friends with some real runners in the area. That can't be a bad thing.

Thanks to two talkative women in an airport with three highly conspicuous medals around their necks, I now have this on my wall next to my bed:

Writing a book was a very educational experience. The biggest thing that it taught me was the value of the long run. There are some things that just take time and vision. There are some things that are really hard and challenging, and they require constant refocusing. They may not bring the results that you hope, but the process -the run itself- is undeniably valuable.

I don't know if I'll actually make it to the big race at the bottom of my sheet. I don't know if I'll even make it to the half marathon, but I'm in it for the long run.

And if it all works out, there may just be someone who decides to do something crazy because they hear me talking in an airport. That would be pretty cool, right?

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Several Quick Updates

We went to Disney World a couple of weeks ago with my family, and it's taken us a while to find our groove after getting back. It was a great trip, and we had a wonderful time with family. We've felt pretty isolated since the move, so it was a needed break with people we love. Plus, Walt Disney World is awesome!
The church plant's website is just about finished, and we cannot wait to show you! There are a couple more finishing touches, but we will unveil the site very soon.
We have received several "Prayers for Chairs" donations! One was from four families that attended the church that my dad served when I was little. It was a really beautiful reminder of God's faithfulness and the love He gives through His people.
We still have a lot of chairs to go, so please click here for more information.
I'm in the final stages of proofing We Win! I don't like promoting it myself, but I do believe that the Gospel is at the center of its message. I want people to know the amazing grace of Jesus Christ and how it impacts every area of life. It's really a great privilege to share that with others.
Edwin's job hours changed slightly, but the small change is making a big difference in our lives. Please pray that God will provide some good family time each week and that He will give Edwin rest. Obviously, Edwin is working extremely hard at his secular job and at church planting. Please pray that God encourages him and gives him strength.
We plan to start meeting with our little core group every week starting at the end of March before our first open service on May 1st. Please pray that God will bring the people that He wants to be a part of this community of believers. Pray that we will build relationships that will have a kingdom impact.