When I left off, we were in Toccoa, GA, and much more still needs to be said about our time there. It still amazes me that God did so much in us and through us in just two short years. When we were at Zebulon, God began to speak to me that I needed to put in for the open pastor position. God and I had long talks about this as I told Him how I was too young, did not have enough experience, and was un-educated. He must be mistaken because there was no way He could use me, at least not yet. I couldn’t lead a church, but things began to happen, and He used His Word and His people to speak mightily into my life. To this day, I don’t doubt that call! I remember two members of the search committee sitting down with me, and most of the conversation is a blur, but I knew that when they told me that I was not the pastor for them, that one thing needed to be conveyed and that was that I would support their choice, and would not dare touch God’s anointed! You see, the conversation was not a surprise to me because God had already prepared me for their response, and had told me to support the choice. It was a huge lesson in getting self out of the way.
The burden for full-time ministry was still very heavy on me, and God began to lay a prayer on the hearts of my wife and I. “Here I am Lord, send me”. God had spoken into both of our lives that I was going to be a pastor now, not later; school was put on the back burner to seek after God. We put our house up for sale, believing God was going to move us. Although we had no doubt that God had spoken, I will admit the next season was hard, as this time we really had to wait on God. At some point in this process, I talked to the Tucson area church planting strategist, and then basically told him, “NO WAY”! Well, in God’s divine plan He kept my information, and passed it on to Central. Their plan was to have someone start something new to keep a legacy going, as they were beginning to fade. After much conversation, we came out for a week to meet them and the city. Before we even came, we were pretty sure God was calling us here, but after the visit we knew. We set a date to move that God laid on my heart, and we closed on our house the day before we left. It was truly a God provides moment.
You might be wondering how I am so sure God spoke. I had been through part of the study by Henry Blackaby called Experiencing God, and in it we learned through God’s Word, that He speaks through His Word (the Bible), His people, prayer, and circumstances, or as I like to say, super-natural circumstances. God spoke through all four of these ways when I applied at Zebulon, when we put our house for sale, and when we responded to the call to Tucson. Thus starts the Tucson chapter.