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Confirming My Call (“Moving On!” Pt. 6)

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Nope, never wanted to plant a church. Wasn’t my gift or calling. Had lunch with a friend that got me to thinking. Made a list, checked it twice. Then I made the decision to leave everything I knew— all my security—and move to Texas. Then God confirmed it. Here’s how. Am I nuts? You decide…. (Start at Part 1 of this series by clicking here.)

It was Monday night. That morning I made my list of facts and pros and cons concerning this momentous decision of faith to move to Dripping Springs, Texas. My last big step of faith was  leaving my job at Vons Grocery Store, where I had worked for a total of twenty-one years! Before that, it was getting married.

I’ve always played it safe.

I called my friend Kevin, the one who inspired me to consider this move at lunch a few days before, to ask him a question: “Will you start the church with me?”

“Yes,” he replied, “that’s what my business is all about, helping churches with their finances.”

“No,” I clarified. “Will you be my administrator and actually help me to start the church?” Without a moment’s hesitation he said yes. “Uh, would you like to think about it, pray about it a little and talk with your wife before you make this decision?”

“No, I don’t need to. I will help you start it.”

The next morning, I went to our staff meeting, my head reeling with the weight of what I was about to do. Was this really the Lord’s doing? Am I nuts?

My Pastor started off the meeting in an unusual way. He shared with us what he read in his devotional reading that morning, something I don’t remember him ever doing.

“I was reading My Utmost for His Highest,” he explained, “and it was from the text, Matthew 14:29—He said, ‘Come.’ So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus.”

Of course, this passage was about the impetuous Peter fixing his eyes on Jesus and doing something impossible—miraculous—walking on water! Then Pastor Zac looked in my direction and said, “Oswald Chambers wrote, ‘Be reckless with your faith.'”

That was it. That was all he said. You bet I quickly looked up the reading for that day, June 18. Here’s an excerpt:

If you debate for even one second when God has spoken, it is all over for you. Never start to say, “Well, I wonder if He really did speak to me?” Be reckless immediately— totally unrestrained and willing to risk everything— by casting your all upon Him. You do not know when His voice will come to you, but whenever the realization of God comes, even in the faintest way imaginable, be determined to recklessly abandon yourself, surrendering everything to Him. It is only through abandonment of yourself and your circumstances that you will recognize Him. You will only recognize His voice more clearly through recklessness— being willing to risk your all.

Coincidence, right? I don’t think so. Okay, fine. That was one day. But this is what happened the next evening, Wednesday, June 19…

I was going to bed and decided to read some of the books that I hadn’t finished, books that I had lost interest in and set back on the shelf. I grabbed Keith Green’s biography, “No Compromise,” a book I stopped reading several months before. I laid my head on the pillow and turned to where I last left off. Here was the first sentence written by his wife Melody:

“Keith wrote in his journal on August 3, 1979, ‘We’re moving in about a month to Texas!'”

I nearly laughed out loud, but continued reading:

“Never in a million years would we have chosen to move to Texas. But besides the fact that we’d finally be able to move out of the suburbs of Southern California, the main draw was the opportunity for relationships with others who understood the call on our lives.”

Another coincidence, right? Serendipity to be sure. Surely I was reading into all of this what I wanted to. But remember, I never wanted to move. Ever. I raised my hands in praise to God who works out these God-incidences for His glory and our encouragement.

The next thing I did was schedule a meeting with our church’s “second-in-command” for Thursday afternoon to get his opinion about my decision. That evening I got my third confirmation from my long-dead friend, Charles Spurgeon. (Click here to read Part 7.)

4 Comments

  1. I love all the “God-incidences” in our lives. You know Steve, Cheryl and I started praying in 2007 whether we should leave Denver and move to California and move in with my mother to help take care of her. It was, of course, in 2009 when I lost my job, and in 2010 when we lost our house and most of our “Stuff’ in Denver.

    At that point we had no choice but to move to CA and move in with mom. Yes, God answered that prayer in an unusual way, we just had no idea how it would happen that we’d actually be able to move, I mean, sell our house and Cheryl’s condo (we lost that in 2009 also) and such. God stripped away all that meaningless “Stuff” and made it so we could move.

    I know where from you speak my friend. We were here for two and a half years when mom’s condition finally got to the point where we put her into Silverado Senior Living (mainly for her Alzheimer’s but her mobility is very minimal now too). Now Cheryl and I are here in this big house kind of waiting for what God has next, and we went to the Vietnam Mission meeting to see if one of us should go to Vietnam with the team, and God spoke just as clearly to Cheryl about going to Vietnam as he did to you on your present move.

    It was pretty amazing. I had wanted her to go, and after we went to the meeting the “Step of faith” was affirmed by about a dozen people over the next week or so. Truly, when God calls you, He makes a way possible too. We’ve received generous support, and we even got a check that covered 2/3 of the cost of the trip – that we were totally not expecting!

    God is good and we are blessed. We keep asking for His blessing and favor on you and your family in this move. To us, you are very fortunate to get out of this place, this liberal den of iniquity that we call SoCal. I grew up here too, and I thought I would NEVER in a million years come back, and I said something to that effect when I left over 20 years ago with my first wife and kids.

    When I returned with my last wife, broke and homeless, and saved (I was not a Christian when I left), I had a much more humble heart and was willing to go wherever the Lord led us. We’re glad to be here, glad we found our new family at Hope, and sad to see some going on to new horizons with Jesus, but praising His Name for your faith! God bless you!

  2. Thanks for the encouragement!

  3. It is crazy how when we have the smallest of doubt our Father keeps sending us reassurance. I am 35 years and have always believed that every job I had was preparing me for something greater. First job at a summer camp, second at first NBC, next accounting firm, then it was non-profit organization. The nonprofit jobs put face to face with those who are less fortunate than myself both financially, educationally, and in the areas of family support. I worked with adults and youths and during that time somethingbwasbplaced in my heart that helping others especially under privileged youth was my calling. Then hurricane katrina hit. Thanks to prior work experience a job easily when I moved to Atlanta. From that job it was 2 more jobs with the same work experience required but both increasing in pay rate. One day at my last job I met a guy who was a few years younger than me but his zeal for the Lord was light years ahead of mind. While 1 foot in the world he was both feet praising God. It was through him and a few others I remembered everything I was taught as a kid and decided to recommit myself back to my Lord and Savior. He has not only allowed me to move back home but I am in the infant stage of beginning my own nonprofit aimed at giving hope to those the world cast out. I applaud you on your leap of faith but furthermore your obedience. I know that as long as you continue to obey you will continue to be blessed.

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