Okay, I’ve been writing in code the last few weeks, and I want to come clean. I do this because in order for God to get the glory for working in my life, I have to be open about my problems. Then, when He answers my prayers, I can tell about how He has done so much for me.

There are two main things: personal and professional. Personally, I have been struggling with financial difficulties and how to deal with them. We are adopting a daughter from China in a few months, and this is an expensive process. I thought we would be okay, but we have had some random expenses that have made saving more difficult. I have been wrestling with how to deal with this, and it is amazing how a lack of money can cause depression and hopelessness. We have discussed selling our house to get a smaller one, and we have even talked about me getting a new job. I have come to realize that these are ways that I would be handling the problem and not trusting God to handle it. I can’t say that I trust God to handle it and then run around to try to handle it myself. Then I would take the credit and not God. If God wants us to sell our house, then I am sure we will know it. I have drawn comfort from the story of the Israelites at the Red Sea. They had nothing to do but trust God, and that is where I feel like we are.

Now the cool part: Ashley got a call the other day asking her to work part time until we go to China. She also was asked to fill in for a teacher at the preschool, and I have been asked to help do video for Kaleidoscope. These things are pieces to the puzzle, and we see God’s hand in every dollar. How cool is that?

Professionally I have been incredibly frustrated. I have seen things that need to be done differently (imho) or just done. I have developed a higher opinion of myself than I should and have tried to fix everything. This has been bad in two ways. First, I have spent too much time trying to do too many things for which I am not responsible, and therefore have not done a good job of the things for which I am responsible. This has contributed in large part to my dissatisfaction with my job, which, coupled with financial things mentioned above, led me to consider taking another job. Secondly, I have been critical of people who are a part of God’s plan. I have been confident in myself rather than in God. I have been impatient – unwilling to wait on God’s timing and, truth be told, thought that I knew best what should happen.

Dealing with this involves my humility – admitting that I have no control over these things. I must refocus my efforts on doing the job that God has brought me here to do, and be the best youth minister that I can be. I cannot forfeit the role that God has given me here. I have to realize that I am facing situations, both personal and professional, that are so big that only God can handle them. So I’ll let Him. I don’t know how, but I know He does. Check back here to hear how God is faithful. I don’t expect a check for $100,000 in the mail (not that I would mind), but I know that God will give us what we need, and we will grow through this experience.

One disclaimer: I am not posting this so you will feel sorry for me or start paying for my lunch. I only want to be transparent so that God’s work can be seen in my life. However, if you want to change stuff at church, go ahead. I won’t stop you.