Wednesday, October 19, 2016

A Very Needed Update

The Family

Life has been busy, and sleep has been harder to come by, largely due to this one:

He's certainly worth it, but no one is going to be sad when he gets his sleep schedule figured out. He's actually doing fairly well on the sleep, but he's not sleeping quite as consistently as Mommy and Daddy could use. And when he's awake, we need to be really awake.

Big sisters are doing very well. DeLaynie is doing well with the transition to middle school, and Ella is killing it in third grade. They're growing up rapidly, and becoming very sweet young ladies.

The Church

The church planting process is progressing. We have a consistent group of about 14-16 adults, and we have a lot of kids as well. Going to weekly services has helped us find more of a groove, and we seem to be finding our footing as far as worship goes. We were recently blessed with an incredible childcare worker who goes to another church on Saturday nights. That is a massive blessing!

Things are moving forward at a good pace, and the group is growing, but the more people that we have, the more work it is to care for the people spiritually.

Which brings me to the next thing...

The Hunt

I've been looking for a full-time job that would allow Edwin to leave his full-time job and devote more time and energy to church planting. I've had a few interviews, and I haven't heard back from all of them yet. I'm always on the look-out, and I'm always sending out resumes.

I have wanted to work full-time for several years, but the opportunity didn't present itself, and I kept myself extremely busy with volunteer ministry, part-time work, and school, plus the kids. Now it is clearly in the best interest of the ministry and the family for me to go to work full-time, and I'm very excited at the prospect.

The Prayer

Here are a few ways that you can pray for us:

  • Pray that God will help little Li to sleep more soundly and with fewer mid-night wake-ups.
  • Pray that the people currently attending Renovation will invite and bring their friends and family members. We're praying for multiplication more than addition.
  • Pray that God will provide the right job at the right time with the right employer at the right pay.
As always, thank you for your prayers and support. We couldn't do any of the things that we do without you!!!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Gentlemen, This is Your Cue

This is a post that I almost wrote during the Brock Turner scandal, but I decided that it could get too messy. Then came the Trump Tapes, and Lord help me, I just can't stay quiet about this anymore.

This isn't a political post. I'm not going to talk about who you should vote for and who you shouldn't. This is a conversation (one sided, though it may be) with my Christian brothers from a sincere heart that simply desires to see healthy change.

Because here's the thing: I think way more of you than Trump does. 

He has said that it is normal and natural for you to brag about objectifying women and abusing them as sex toys instead of respecting them as co-heirs of grace. He has said that you simply can't help discussing the ways that you mistreat women whenever you get together without female supervision. He's said that his bragging is "just words," and that they're totally normal words for your portion of the population.

Gentlemen, this is your cue to be outraged.

You should be deeply offended by Trump's excuses because he's throwing you under the bus in order to promote his own agenda. You should be angry that your role as protectors has been so horribly mis-used by one of your own who claims to follow the God who gave men strength and social status so that they could protect the vulnerable ones given to their care. You should be hurt that Trump's arguments have been accepted and defended as truth.

Gentlemen, this is your cue to speak up.

But so many of you aren't offended. So many of you are justifying Trump's criminal sin in hopes of "winning" an election that is truly a no-win situation. So many of you, my precious Christian brothers, are staying quiet while your sisters fight the battle for you.

I believe in you, fellas. I don't believe that men who have placed their faith in Jesus Christ and live under His leadership really believe that there is anything normal or natural about Trump's comments. I don't believe that you really think it's okay or that someone else's sin justifies Trump's actions. I believe that you recognize that your strength was given to you by God so you can protect those who are weak. I believe that you know that women are your equals in Christ, and they should be afforded the same respect and love that you expect. I believe in you. I really do.

I just don't think you've quite understood what Trump was saying about you, and I don't think that you understand that some women have to come to think so little of you that they're buying Trump's excuses.

I know that many people will vote for Trump in order to protect the Supreme Court seat that is up for grabs and those that may open in the next four years. I can understand that logic, and I respect your decision, even if I do disagree with it personally.

But even if you plan to cast your vote for Trump, don't think that means that you're obligated to defend his sinful, vile, and criminal behavior or make excuses for it. Your first allegiance is to Christ, and He demands that we recognize evil for what it is.

Gentlemen, this is your cue to use your strength, your voice, and your life for the purposes God has given you. This is your cue to show those of us who still believe in you what manhood really looks like.