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March 31, 2013

Good Friday and Easter with Pastor Sell

Today was my first Easter as a seminarian. When I arrived at church, I found Pastor Sell and talked over what I was going to be helping with today. I ended up leading part of the responsive readings in addition to the readings. It was fun and I was happy that I was able to take a bigger part in the service. The congregation really has started blooming like an Easter Lilly under the direction of Pastor Sell. I'm happy to see them come out of this transition and to be part of this experience. The energy of Pastor Sell is also contageous to the congregation as well as to myself. I am excited to meet with Pastor Sell this week to begin working closer together.

I also had the privlage of being part of the Good Friday play with the students and a few other adult volunteers. The students were pretty good and had to memorize several lines. I only had one line I had to memorize. It was pretty fun and made me miss doing theatre. I hope I get the time to perform when I'm pastoring. I'd like to do community theatre.

March 22, 2013

Fieldwork

Yes, this is two posts in a row, but they are unrelated and I didn't want to make one giant post.  ;)

Anyway, three weeks ago Our Savior said goodbye to their intentional interim pastor.  Two weeks ago, the installed Rev. Mark Sell as their new full time pastor and last week he gave his first sermon as the pastor at Our Savior.  This was the most fast I have seen or heard this process happen (Did I mention that they extended the call only about a month ago?), but I am excited to have Pastor Sell at Our Savior.

I already knew Pastor Sell as he was my Greek Readings adjunct professor during the Fall term.  We talked about Greek, but he also spent some time preaching to us (seminary professors can't always help themselves I've come to learn.  Preaching is just in their nature.).  He has a lot of energy and a good solid theology.  I really think he is going to help out Our Savior a lot and I think he's going to teach me a lot about being a good pastor.  We have had a line of communication open since he started and in a couple of weeks I am going to start trying to observe him as he goes about making visits and counseling and preparing for sermons and all of the other things pastors do.  We're also going to start figuring out what else I can help out with around Our Savior in the time I have (which will be more next term and year than this term).  I won't be able to take my worship class until next year, so I won't be able to lead a service until then, but I can still help out with certain parts.

I am excited for Pastor Sell and I am excited that he is my supervisor.  I can't wait for this roller coaster ride with him as he also acclimates himself to the congregation and then starts moving with them.  I know Marie is pretty excited to.  His sermon delivery demands your attention and you never get bored.  In fact, I have come to the decision that pulpits real reason for existence are really more for pastors like him so they have something to hold on to so they don't fly around and take off like a rocket during their sermon.  Did I mention I am excited?

May I breath now?

A LOT has been going on recently.  With a new term (which isn't quite new anymore) I am back to reading, writing, and studying.  This term I have so much more reading assignments than I've had yet.  I'm enjoying the classes though.  There is a lot that I am learning that I didn't know before and there is also quite a bit in my classes that are fun.  They are keeping me busy though.  Unfortunately, they have also kept me from going to my men's group on Tuesday nights thus far.  I'm really missing the guys and the fellowship and can't wait until I am able to go back.  On top of class and school work, I am attending my cross-cultural module.

I am helping out at World Impact, an inner city ministry that has the mission of seeking out individuals in the community to raise up and train to be leaders.  I help out on Thursday nights which is basketball nights.  The night starts at 6:30 with a Bible study for all of those who are interested in going a little deeper.  Then at 7:00 the court opens for 5 on 5 games.  They each last about 10 minutes.  Helping to organize this is crazy insane, especially where there are 40+ guys that show up.  Last week this happened and I was in charge of keeping the list of names and organizing the teams.  It was not the easiest but I made it out alive.  Then between 8:00 and 8:30 we will break for Half-Time, a shorter evangelistic Bible study.  This week I lead Half-Time and we read the Parable of the Prodigal Son.  I was a little disappointed because one of the guys I really wanted to be there left before Half-Time.  I think it sank in with some other guys though.  Then after Half-Time basketball continues until 10:00.  Needless to say, getting out of classes at 2:00 I don't have a lot of free time Thursdays.

This week has been extra crazy because my boss at the school store, Erika, went on vacation and put me in charge of the campus store.  With class schedules, we have five other guys that I have been in charge of in order to cover a full day.  It has been interesting and not always easy.  There was one point where there was a confusion over the schedule and I had to work 15 minutes because someone was told he wasn't working when he was supposed to be.  I was fortunate enough he got there before I had to go to class.  There has been a few other issues...I'll just say were not here for our math skills.  But overall, just the busyness has been what has been wearing me out.  I'm the only one who knows the process we have to go through to make coffee (thank you Health Department) and I'm the only one with a key to the store and any mishaps fall on me to take care of.  Campus Tours also fall under the Campus Store and though we haven't had many scheduled, that was just another thing to add to the plate.  I don't envy my boss and can't wait until she gets back on Monday!

Even though this week has made me go full speed and be stretched in all kinds of direction, I'm still here and I'm still alive.  It has helped me confidence in myself.  I know everything hasn't run smoothly, but it's still running and mistakes have been fixed.  The store is still standing, and I've come up with some ideas to make it run easier the next time Erika leaves.  My paper was written and turned in completed yesterday and I'm confident I aced my exam today.  I can do this.  I can be a good pastor and I can be a faithful leader.  I thank the Lord for giving me this opportunity to be stretched because He has shown me that I am able to be stretched without breaking.  He has also shown me that He has made me strong and able.  Thank you Lord for all that you have done.  Let your name be praised.

Did I mention that we are dog sitting this week?  And into next week?  For two different people?  Thankfully the only overlap was yesterday...

March 15, 2013

Spring is almost here!

Today is supposed to be 70 degrees and sunshiny. I'm excited to be nearly done with winter. I say nearly because this weekend we're dipping back into the low 50s for the high temperature and bringing back the rain. It was a long cold winter and I'm ready for the warm sunny days ahead.

Lots has changed since we last wrote. We're officially moved into our new home, the place our child will come home to. It's huge! No joke. We nearly doubled the square footage by moving and since both Timothy and I were used to dorm rooms, tiny apartments, basements, etc., 825 sq feet is ginormous! We're enjoying being able to stretch out a bit and move around. Everything is now unpacked and I've started hanging things on the wall. It's beginning to look and feel like home. That is, once we get rid of the ants in the bathroom. (A HUGE thank you to the Demskis for introducing me to Terro. I've never seen so many ants willingly cart poison back to the nest before. Hopefully in a week or so, we will be ant free!)

Timothy has started his spring term at the seminary and is completing week 2 of 10 today. He's taking some pretty cool classes this term. I think my favorites are Pastor as Counselor and the Gospel in C.S. Lewis' writing. I'm enjoying talking with him about what he's learning. Plus the C.S. Lewis class requires that we read the Chronicles of Narnia again :) We've been having story time each night for a while. I'll let Timothy talk about his term though.

Baby continues to grow. For about the past three weeks (before my tummy stretched a little more), I could feel most of the acrobatics being performed by the little tyke. If this is any indication, our baby is going to be an energetic and busy bugger. My next ultrasound is scheduled for April 1. Baby will be 20 weeks then and we'll be half way (if the doctor's due date is the day when Baby decides to come) to meeting the newest member of the Roth family. It's interesting to think about. I'm not exactly looking very pregnant (at least right now) and I know it's still early for that, but I'm not really feeling very pregnant either. But I'm almost half way through.

Tonight, my parents-in-law are taking us to see War Horse. If you don't know much about this play, Google it. The puppetry is amazing and we're both looking forward to it. I'll report back.