Welcome back! As you are still reading on the second post of "Czecherboarding", I hope that the adventurous tone of my blog, so well captured in the -ing ending, grabbed your attention, that you've returned for the second installation in the gripping story of my progress towards the Czech Republic.
Well, here it is: the only difficulty with writing dynamic blogs such as "Czecherboarding" is that the writer - in the case, me - prefers to update people on events and progress that is actually exciting. I would like to tell you that I've finished raising support and am on my way to Prague, or even that I've purchased my plane ticket. I would like to tell you how ministry paid off as my students have committed themselves to a lifetime of walking with Christ in His plans for them, and not their own. And I do hope to share these things with you some day soon . . . but not today.
What I would like to update you on today is much more subtle and muted, a mere whisper of an update. As Elijah learned, though, it is in the whispers that God speaks. As many of you know, my personality is an active one: I prefer to plan my schedule well in advance and take every effort to see that it is carried through, to actively seek out opportunities for jobs and ministries to keep busy, to direct and lead and not to follow. After all, I do climb mountains for fun (more on that later). As I learned long ago, however, sometimes the drive to accomplish something, to secure the future, needs to take a backseat to steady working of God.
My junior year at Bob Jones University, I directed a film for the Modern Language Club - a project that brought my active, organized personality to the fore. Writing the script, casting the parts, finding a support crew, organizing rehearsals - all of these was quite fun for me. What was not so fun were the hiccups in my project. A few hours before rehearsals, actors emailed me to say they couldn't make it. My response was, quite naturally, to panic. I sent out frantic emails trying to reschedule the film shoot or to schedule a different film shoot and waited on pins and needles in my dorm room to hear back. I often did hear back within a half hour - occasionally from the actor that had sent me the original panic-inducing email, saying they could make it after all. That semester, I learned that no matter how hard I work on something, how hard I try to fit everything to one perfect schedule, my own plans will change . . . and behind the scenes, working everything out as needed, there is God.
A verse meaningful that semester at BJU, Psalm 46:10 returns as a good reminder for me now (and indeed, "Be Still My Soul" is still one of my favourite hymns). There, God commands us to "be still and know that I am God". Notice that "be still" is a command, somthing to be obeyed. As I filmed the Modern Language Club piece, I had difficulty with this command, and often realized too late that had I done nothing, God still would have resolved my problems for me. Now, I look back to this experience and remember that though I cannot predict the future, though I cannot force my way over to Prague, God is still at work. Indeed, in this very stillness the Lord shows that "I am God" - that He is in control, working, when we can do nothing. As much as this stillness goes against the grain of my personality, it gives me the opportunity to share with you the most exciting update of all: that God is at work, as much in the quiet as in the busyness of everyday life.
And now, a few more detailed specifics about that work. Since I last wrote you, I have established several new contacts for my support team and made several appointments to share my ministry with fellow believers. Also, I have begun a short-term summer ministry at our local crisis pregnancy center. As I have been told, a soul in need is a soul in need - whether at the Christian International School of Prague, or here at the Salina pregnancy center. My official responsibilities there are termed "office work" - a rather generic title, imposed by the the necessarily wide range of work I do. I answer phones and assist clients with paperwork, but I am also working on special projects - currently, researching the requirements for an organizational Facebook profile. I am excited about the ways to participate in Christian ministry, even while I wait to leave for Prague.
As I close, I would ask for your prayers: for the Christian International School of Prague, as many teachers return Stateside for summer break; for the crisis pregnancy center, as it develops a strong online witness to families faced with unplanned pregnancies; for my own support-raising process, as I invite people (perhaps you!) to join me in prayer and financial support. And finally, pray that amidst the stillness God will work, showing Himself - as always - to be God.