The Current Chapter…
In 1992 we moved to New Brunswick, Canada. Initially we worked several years as sign language educational interpreters. I later took a human service worker course and for a number of years both volunteered and worked with cognitively challenged or disadvantaged individuals. Job stress eventually necessitated a departure from this and I found myself on stress leave unemployment insurance.
During this time I served as an elder at the church we attended in Lincoln, NB. A new pastor had just begun at the church but still had to complete some studies online. I was feeling stronger, managing on U.I., and had loads of free time, so I began to help out at the church.
As the day neared when the unemployment insurance would expire I wondered what the Lord had for us next. How were we going to make ends meet? I loved the work I was doing at the church, but a replacement income was soon going to be necessary. We prayed.
I was both humbled and awed when I was invited to become a part-time administrative staff person in 2011. When I was installed as part-time assistant pastor some months later I began to see how the Lord had been leading my life all along.
He led me to Bible College when I was young enough and unencumbered enough to go in any new direction as the Lord may lead.
He used Bible College to deepen my faith, see God at work in me to do things I might otherwise never have imagined.
He used Bible College to bring to my attention a talent for writing, direct me to develop it and use it for His glory.
He used Bible College to bring me from Ontario to Saskatchewan, and all the numerous and exciting opportunities He had planned for me there – including bringing me to the woman He had planned for me from the foundation of the world — we celebrate our 37th year of marriage this Saturday.
He directed me to Bible College because He knew it would be necessary for my later call to pastoral work some 35 years later!
He used my experience in correspondence courses and college studies to discipline my mind to be a self-learner, a lover of study and truth, a lover of the Word of God!
He even used that long dry spell after Bible College graduation to massage my head, crammed as it was with theology and insight, shoving it downward, nearer my heart. He gave me that space to “work it out” – a time for digestion before the long run.
But I must stop, though I truly could go on and on… He used and continues to use much suffering, sickness, loss, and grief too, to work in me deeper and abiding things, works of the Holy Spirit, surrenderings, endurances, future hopes and a love for His coming kingdom.
It has been good these past three days to revisit these things, to know indeed that “He has done everything well” (Mark 7:37), that even the scraps have purpose, “that nothing be wasted” (John 6:12), and to know His wisdom and guidance is true for every believer, for me, and for you: “being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 1:6).