Apr 11, 2007

Are You Sitting Down?

Hang on to your chairs girls, because I am about to take you on a ride with me. This ride started about 9 and a half months ago as Skip and I were vacationing in our favorite mountain vacation spot- Estes Park, CO. Skip was about to undergo surgery for hip replacement the next month and we were just beginning our sabbatical. He was in quite a bit of pain and needed the rest from our crazy schedules. On one particular day, Skip did not get up and fly fish like he normally does, instead he just layed there in bed. I'm an early bird on vacation so I was up drinking coffee, watching for elk out our window, and basically just enjoying the beautiful scenery. When I went in to check on Skip, he was crying. My manly man DOES NOT CRY. Okay, maybe at the birth of our three children, but that's about it. When I went to him, he was openly sobbing, and he told me words I will never forget. He said, "What do you think about going home." I knew he did not mean cutting our vacation short, he meant going home (as in our home town. As in moving. For those of you who know us, we have been in Corpus for 8 years(this May) and love it like no other place on this earth. This is where Skip and I have truly experienced God in a way we could have only imagined. This is where Annie(our 7 yr. old baby was born) and our children have grown up. This is where Skip has been led by God to help build the most awesome church in the world(I am a little biased). This is the place I find comfort and strength from friends, neighbors and my church. This is home. So I then I looked Skip in the eyes and said as gently as possible, "WHAT? ARE YOU CRAZY? ABSOLUTELY NOT, CORPUS IS MY HOME AND I WILL IMMEDIATELY GET TO PRAYING THAT YOU ARE IN SOME SORT OF DELUSION FROM YOUR PAIN MEDS AND THAT THIS CONVERSATION WILL NOT EVER COME UP AGAIN." I wish with all my heart that I could say -Naw, I'm just teasing. But with all honesty, I really was did say something like this and I shut my husband and his feelings down out of fear and insecurity. We have about the most wonderful pastor in the world you could dream of, an A+ staff. I can't even begin to tell you about the wonderful people here. It is too many blessings, you will be jealous. I'm serious! The people in South Texas are as friendly and giving as you could ever find.

Now fast forward into a couple of months, and God started to speak to me through my prayer time. I started praying more for Skip and for his happiness and his desires. I slowly started thinking less about me and looking more to my husband's passions and joys. Don't get me wrong, he has been happy everyday at his job and could probably go on doing the same things until he goes home to be with the Lord, but is that what God wanted? I really started asking God to show me ways to pray for Skip and his talents to be used by God to the fullest. Skip started to take on a more behind the scenes approach in weekend worship. He was directing the services, and doing more video, instead of singing and leading us in worship. Skip was okay with that, and in fact the talent that came forth was phenomenal. Not only talented musicians and singers were brought to us, but also more artistic web designers, and more volunteers with vast skills that were needed to make worship even better. It was amazing how God just kept making things better and better. Skip, however, still seemed to be becoming restless and questioning of God as to what he was supposed to do. I was keeping all of this to myself, but I knew my husband was searching for answers that he didn't even know the questions to. I shared this with my wise friend in China, who prayed constantly for us. In the mean time, Skip was so busy with the new building so there wasn't a lot of free time to do anything but keep moving forward.

We decided to put our house on the market in November as many of you know. We wanted to move to a one story house, and get our housing costs down a bit. Well, months have now gone by and we haven't had a single offer on the house. I kept praying that God would sell it, but I didn't understand why he didn't. Then a few weeks ago, we were told that our old church in Victoria was losing their Senior Pastor, administrative pastor, and their worship pastor. The three of them are going to start a wonderful church in Florida and are leaving a huge void that needs to be filled by someone that God can use to bring about growth, vision and change. This is a wonderful church called Parkway Church that has about 1200-1400 a week in attendance. Not only did we find out they were losing their worship pastor, we found out that they wanted Skip to come and be the new one. Okay, I'm at this point freaking out! Nine months ago when Skip brought this desire up, I never thought there would actually be a possible job opening. I also never thought God would call us out of our comfort zone. Parkway has a wonderful interium pastor who has a heart for reaching the lost, which we have met with and absolutely love. He is so different from our current pastor, but Skip and he clicked immediately with ideas and vision. We began to pray and get immediate confirmation from God. Not only that, our BAF pastor is completely aware and has been so supportive of whatever we choose to do. Bil is in the business of following God -Whatever it takes. He and his wife are very sad to see Skip leave, but they know what Skip has brought to BAF and are thrilled for Skip to share his gifts with another church. Yes, we are taking the job and moving in a couple of months. Praise God, this girl is going home. Guess who lives in Victoria? My mom and her husband, my daddy and his wife, Skip's parents, my brother and his wife along with their 18 month old twins (too precious), my brother-in-law (my sister is currently in LA with her son breaking into acting), my 19 yr. old niece (I'm very close to her), Skip's brother and wife and their beautiful family, my grandparents, Skip's grandmother, too many aunts and uncles to list, and so many friends that would take up pages and pages to come. Everyone in Victoria already knows and is so thrilled. We are just now sharing with friends here which is very sad, but they couldn't be more excited for us. I guess I know now why my house did not sell over the last 5 and a half months. God knew what we didn't. Is this the coolest thing, or what?

I am still in shock a bit, and haven't a clue about schools for the kids, but I do know that God is in this and he is fully preparing the way for us. He has the details worked out and we need to trust his ability to lead the way. I feel so blessed, excited, and sad all at the same time. I feel I have truly learned a ton here, and I am ready to go out into a new season of life. I wanted to tell all of you so badly what has been going on, but I promised Skip that I would wait until everything was official. We could not be leaving on a higher note. BAF had 10,150 people in attendance for our grand opening weekend. Yes, I said 10,150 people who heard the word of God preached and tons came to Christ for the first time. Skip has been here since the beginning and it is bittersweet to leave. I know that he is going to offer so much to Parkway, and I myself am also ready to bloom into something beautiful there. I hope all of you will join me in this wonderful adventure. I have a feeling it is going to be a thrilling ride.

19 comments:

Tiffany said...

You've made me cry all over again. You have planted so many wonderful seeds here and I know going back home you are going to blossom and shine into all that God wants you and desires you to become. I'm sad to see you go, but deep down I have a feeling I'm going to see alot of more of you. Okay I'm off to cry some more. HA!HA!HA!

Kelly said...

Susie,
I will be praying for you and your family during this big transiiton! As a minister's wife, I know that God could move us at any time, as well. That prospect is scary and exciting at the same time! I rejoice in the peace that you and your husband have in this decision. What a blessing it will be to be so close to family! What wonderful new opportunties you will have in ministry. Blessings!

Ruth said...

I pray God continues to show you His thoughts on this and that the transition is smooth. I sure it's exciting to be heading back to your family and sooo hard to leave your friends you have made. Blessings to you as you go forward!

Padre Reeds said...

That's awesome news. You guys are going to thrive. That's heavy stuff when God tells you something that makes you sob. When God speaks directly, it rocks your core. Hey maybe that's what was up with his Hip...God messed up Jacob's hip socket too. :)Now I understand the tweeky vibe I felt when I saw Skipmac after the 1 o'clock service. I think we were blogging similar sentiments at the same time in the same town. I hope the fish are as hungry for Seth's baits as they were for his dad's, 30yrs ago.

Penless Thoughts said...

There is nothing more blessed than being in God's perfect will, place and timing. I rejoyce with you and your husband.

Susan

Penless Thoughts said...

P.S. 10,150 people WOW. Praise God-Praise God!!!

Kelly said...

I love your blog and have been "lurking" (I really hate that word!) but just had to comment. First, I love your story about the name of your blog- great message! Second, WOW! What an awesome thing to see the path the Lord has lead you on over the last 9 months. I love to see how God speaks to us- if we are willing to listen. Praise God for your and your husband's obedience to allow Him to take you on this journey!
Blessings!

Julie said...

Susie,
I was waiting to see when you'd post this on your blog. I cried through your entire e-mail yesterday! God is AWESOME and your steps are ordered, girl!

Praise God for opening the doors and moving you and Skip HOME...close to so much family. I'm looking forward to hearing of your many new adventures!

Connie Barris said...

OK... now that the tears have just filled my eyes and I can't read...ok.. now I'm reading again...

chills running up and down my body...

there.. let me take off my shoes as I am standing on Holy Ground...

WOW

The best is your obedience to His word...

I can't wait to follow the rest of the story...

And of course, I will be praying...

Hallelujah \0/
Connie

Coach J said...

Wow! I just love a good testimony about God's ways and how He is working in our lives. I pray blessings right now over you, and that He will make the move so much more smoothly than you ever thought possible. I just know the buyer for your house there is coming, suddenly!! (God is so into "suddenly"s!)
Another subject-I've been given a thinking blogger award, and listed your blog as one of 5 that make me think. Come on over and check it out. You don't have to post anything about it, if you don't want to, but I wanted to let you know that I put a link for your blog there. I hope we can "talk" in the future.

Blessed Assurances said...

Wow! What an amazing adventure. Recently I have had to totally trust God and my husband with our future (trying to be submissive here! :D ) God is showing us some great new things now that I have layed down my desires. I know that you and Skip will be a blessing to the church in Victoria and what a joy to be around all your family. Keep us posted with the house-I believe it will sell rather quickly now, don't you?

Janice said...

Susie,
It is awesome when God speaks to you like that. I know I have experienced it myself. Maybe one I can tell you have we ended up here in Corpus. Corpus is a long way from Arkansas. Anyway you guys will be greatly missed. This is the only church Doug and I have ever been apart of. Anyway we wish you all the best.

CONNIE'S THOUGHTS FROM THE HEART said...

Susie, I am so happy for you and your family. It is so great to see God moving in a family and them surrendering to His will. I wish you God's blessing all along the way. connie from Texas

Barb said...

Wonderful news, Susie, and the best part is "hearing" your excitement. Congratulations and I know we can't wait to follow you on this journey.

Mary C said...

Congratulations! God is good!!

Chappyswife said...

Susie, I am so excited for you. I love to see when God moves like this, then everything falls into place perfectly like pieces of a puzzle. Now when you look back, you can discover all the little pieces that fit now. How amazing. He really does have us in the palm of His hand.

I am also amazed that your church has grown so, and now you get to be a part of starting over. What a priviledge.

Congratulations to you and your family. Can't wait to hear more about it.

Robin said...

Just thinking about you this Sunday morning. Praying still for a fabulous transition into your new role and home. =)

momrn2 said...

How did I miss this post until now?!?! What incredible news!! Keep us posted on the updates!

It never ceases to amaze me at how God chooses to act on our behalf!

JennaG said...

It is amazing how God works--His plan is perfect! I'm happy that you get to move home--and that you are ok with it! Praying that the move goes smoothly!