You’ve Heard the News

Originally published June 28, 2013

Dear Friends,

So, the word is out: we’ve received a new assignment. As of August 1, I will be the president of The Christian and Missionary Alliance. I can’t describe to you what I’m feeling as I type those words. Suffice it to say, I’m a bit numb but very honored by this appointment.

As you can guess, this has been a fascinating journey for us. It wasn’t appropriate for me to share prior to the election, but I actually felt God beginning to call me to this role eight years ago. I don’t feel qualified, but I do feel called. And, I’m trusting that God enables those He commissions. Once again I find myself in a situation that so far exceeds my capacity that I am thrust into a place of dependence upon Him.

Already the “agendas” have begun to pour in. I’m not officially in office for five more weeks, yet some are desiring for me to use my new role to advance what is dear to their hearts. Good things, all of them; but the question I must ask is what has God called me to do in this role? I know with great certainty that He has called me to it; now I need to hear from Him what He has for me to do through it. And, I know that His agenda isn’t established via popularity polls.

Many of you have prayed us out of death’s grip and back to life. You prayed us out of a wheelchair and off of a feeding tube and into a new era of strength. You’ve prayed God’s protection on our marriage and family. You’ve prayed us up to this point . . . a point that feels like we’ve just reached the starting line. Having prayed us to the starting line, would you continue to pray that we’d run well? I’m confident that you will.

Meanwhile, for the next weeks I’m still in the “wrap up previous commitments” mode. I’ve deeply enjoyed being district superintendent for the Alliance Northwest (and am typing these words from Alaska—tough assignment! Love it!) but am bringing that to a close. Our house in Salem is finally being sold (yet another answer to prayer). Jo just had a Wisconsin garage sale as we figure out what life in Colorado Springs might look like. The writing projects are on hold (that part of this new assignment is confusing to me—where do my writing dreams fit in?)

Before the August 1 launch, we are going to take about 12 days of vacation to give everything a “rest.” This, too, is an expression of God’s kindness to us through you. Four years ago during the slow and sometimes hopeless recovery, through a friend’s Facebook post you sent us money to buy a Wii, which was helpful in my rehabilitation process. However, you sent about $2,000 more than we needed for the Wii. It was suggested that we save the money for a cruise someday. At the time, it seemed like an impossible dream, but we did as was suggested. (I refused to go on a cruise if I couldn’t eat the buffets!) Now, it’s time to redeem your generosity and Jo and I will spend the better part of a week touring the Northeast (Boston, Halifax, etc.) on some party barge. Besides, it’s our 30th anniversary this year, and it seemed like the right time to do it. Thank you for making it possible.

Writing this blog today gives me the feeling that we’ve come to the end of a long trail/trial . . . a long road that wound its way through ICU rooms, lonely nights, unanswered questions, physical suffering, wrestling matches with faith, interim positions, and lots of transition. It won’t be the last time we travel such a road, I’m sure. But for today, I breathe deeply this refreshing air and wait in expectation for how this journey will continue to bring more glory to God.

A new day has come for us. Please give Him glory with me.

With gratitude,

Psalm 40:8


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