A New Era Begins

Tomorrow's my first day at my new job, and I must say that I'm quite ready and excited to get started. I didn't think I would be on the job track when I came to Florida, but it turns out to be a good thing for me for a few reasons:

1) I went from not writing at all to trying to be a full-time writer in one shot, and the long slate of open days has been a bit too daunting to be productive -- though some essay work and a new novel have come out of it, as well as more regularity on this blog.

2) I want an outlet for meeting new people and making new friends, and working by myself on novels and essays in my own home or at Panera is just not a realistic way to accomplish that. Besides, those kids working at Panera, even though they're used to seeing me around all the time, are just a bit too young for my taste. :)

3) I've come to see how much I enjoy being a part of something bigger than myself -- some kind of project or mission for which my skills and talents and abilities and personality can help make a difference. I like being part of a team that's working toward a common goal.

4) And besides, I just like working with the written word and other people.

So, tomorrow begins New Era #2. (The first was getting married and moving to Florida, obviously.)

Kirk's life is back on the fast track, too, with school and prospective coaching clients coming up, so now we'll both be focused and on point in our respective areas of life. The past few months have been a gift, though, with all the unending time together. It helped establish us as an "us" in our new life. Now we're ready to "go and do" with that foundation laid.

You can keep us in your prayers about the future.

Some of you know we have been thinking and praying toward a life of ministry in Oxford for over a year now, and it's become increasingly clear that that's where we're headed in the next 2-3 years -- at least, unless God drastically intervenes to direct us otherwise, but it seems quite clear all this has come from Him. We're beginning to take some material steps in that direction, and we would covet your prayers for continued clarity on the means and methods and timing for this.

Just so you know what we're thinking of doing, we may start with a 9-month program on missions and apologetics with Alister McGrath and Ravi Zacharias at the Oxford Study Centre. Since it's based at Wycliffe Hall, we'd have the two-fold privilege of being an active part of the college while in regular fellowship and community with Christians from all around the world. We'd also delve into practical missions work on a regular basis with those in the program and learn first-hand about the climate of faith in the United Kingdom.

After that is done, I feel very strongly that God is leading me to start a Ministry of Mercy for people in the city, residents and students, who are broken and need the healing touch of comfort from the Holy Spirit as He seeks to revive and reclaim their hearts. Kirk is also praying toward a ministry of availability and encouragement, so I guess you could say that both of us are being called toward loving people where they are, plain and simple.

Besides praying for us, please also keep in your prayers those whom we would touch through our life of ministry there. This is something I've just begun to do as well.

And that new step, of course, would be the start of New Era #3 in our life! Dear Lord, hear our prayer and guide us in Your sacred way all of our days in You.