Momentous May gives way to June

Well, it is hard to believe that we are already two days in the the month June!  The year is almost half over.

May started out with some exciting events:  seminary graduation, time with my Dad, etc.  I am now typing this post on my new 15′ MacBook Pro which was a graduation gift from my Dad.  I am very thankful for this gift.  I did not realize how bad and slow my old computer is until using this one and it is lightning fast!  I am still trying to get use to the way Apple does things.  It is harder for me because I have used Windows for soooo long and I still am subjected to using Windows at work.  I did get a copy of Parallels to run a few apps that are Windows based that do not have a Mac equivalent (NotaBene, etc.) I still have to obtain a copy of Windows 7 which I should be doing in a couple of days.  I also need to take both computers in to the Apple store to have the data (music, pictures, etc.) moved from the old laptop to the new one.  I will then remove most of the stuff that is slowing it down and it will be a decent machine for my son who is 4 and uses the computer from time to time.  It will still be slow, but it won’t matter to him.

We are staying in our current apartment for another year.  We really wanted to move elsewhere but found out that there is not a lot out there in our price range and the few places that we did find, neither of us were agreed on them.  We would have had some challenges because of the reduction in either storage space or square footage.  What we did learn from this exercise is that we need to downsize.  So that will be a summer project for us!  Even though the rent has been increased by $50 a month, my goal is to pay the increase for the entire year ($600) before the new lease starts so we can pay rent at our current rate and possibly try to enjoy a small amount of the pay raise that I received last week.  I was able to negotiate a new refrigerator out of the deal since the one that we currently have in the apt is original with the apt building (1984-1986)

I have had the opportunity to do some preaching recently.  I had not preached since April because of a heavy seminary load and trying to get all of my academic work completed before graduation.  I hated to suspend my preaching, but knew that it was the best decision for that particular time.  I preached a week ago at Calvary Baptist Church in Cambridge, MN.  The pastor along with a good number of the church leadership were away at a convention in KY.  I was glad to fill the pulpit in the pastor’s absence (even though we have never met or spoken personally)  I spoke three times (Sunday School, AM, and afternoon service).  I spoke from 1 Peter 1 all three times.  This is part of an experiment that I am trying (see previous post) and so far I am really enjoying it because it really takes the pressure off of trying to decide what to preach when you are invited for a single Sunday.    I am preaching this Sunday in Cameron, WI for one service and then I will be back at FBC International Falls again on July 11th.  Thankful that the Lord has allowed these opportunities!

We are still praying and seeking God’s will regarding future full-time vocational ministry.  I am searching the usual websites for such opportunities.  If I was skilled in the area of music or a youth pastor, I could have a choice of a number of opportunities.  I recognize that I do not possess the gifts for either of those areas, so I will wait for the Lord to open the right opportunity.  I am also looking in earnest for a better secular job in the meantime.  I have been with the same company for almost eight years and I think I have reached a point where I cannot go any further.  I have watched my job function change drastically to where I have become somewhat of a robot due to a change in job functions.  I do not like being marginalized like I have seen in recent days.  Coupled with a  performance review that really did not provide me any guidance or career pathing, I have decided that it is time to find better more suitable employment until full-time vocational ministry is available.  I will keep working and looking.

We are hoping to take a family vacation this summer if we can find the time and if finances are favorable.

I was recently honored with a nomination to serve as a deacon in our church. I accepted the nomination and will wait to see if I am permitted to serve in such a capacity (election at annual meeting in a couple of weeks).

God is good all the time.  All the time God is good.

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