Stepping out in faith...sorta

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by ANewCreature, Jan 2, 2008.

  1. ANewCreature

    ANewCreature
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    Not totally yet, but I've just completed seminry, mostly through online courses but a few modules. I've left much of my former law practice behind, though I'm not yet listed as inactive - pray some more money comes my way, as there are 3-4 people/couples who have said they'll have me do their estates, but they've been saying that for months :laugh: And, i'm posting this here because there doesn't seem to be a "getting to know you" forum. Plus, my background is part of my questions for all of you and requests for prayer.

    Anyway, my name is Doug, but I've chosen this screnname because my favorite verse is 2 Cor. 5:17, and I pray I never lose the amazement I have at that fact I became a new creature in Christ back in college. I had all sorts of factual knowledge about the Bible, but it was finally sitting down and reading a Gideon's New Testament given to me then that I realized I need to receive Him as my Savior, that despite how good I tried to be, it wouldn't be enough. I'd gone to a Lutheran church as a child which was good for facts, but not good on encouraging decisions

    Anyway, my home church is fabulous, but I figure any help and encouragement will be good, and some ofyou might even know of a good situation for me, as I'm trying to see where the Lord calls me:

    1. I feel it important to mention in a cover letter my being congenitally legally blind (20/800) and what limitatiojns I don't have (I can read print like this real close, can get around on my own, no cane or guide dog) - it helps them see what the Lord has led me through and how He has helped me to rely totally on Him, as when I started my own practice (after being unable to find a job) I was very independent-minded, not really following His will for my life. Do you thikn it's important to mention this? I almost like to just to give people a clearer 9iidea of who I am, but I dont' want to make my resume/cover letter *too* lengthy.

    2. Should I mention, in candidating, my financial situation? I don't want to scare poeple away, again, but while normally I wouldn't be concerned about money, being on Social Security means that - ironically - I might be able to serve without drwing a salary, as long as I had a parsonage - thus my SS could pay for food and such. But, if I *were* to draw a salary, without a parsonage, it'd need to be a certain amount. It's more complex than most poeple are used to dealing with, it seems; or is that just the devil trying to frustrate me when i think that? Wouldn't surprise me if it was...

    3. Since I'm not preaching at the moment, what will committees want to hear? A sermon done extemporaneously in front of nobody, or a shorter devotional (15-20 min.) or Sunday School lesson (which could be longer) in front of a live crowd, which I do deliver? Or, would one on each side of the tape be best?

    4. One problem with being legally blind is you can't see if someone's got a ring on; I don't even know how to approach a woman and ask them out because it seems kind of awkward to ask if they're married or seeing someone for that purpose. though I've dated women in the past, none has been *the* one. I've always paid more attention to the relationship aspect than most, which is why I never sriously dated in high school - it seemed so superficial the way kids were, even then. (Like I say, I tried to be *so* perfect at a youngster, and was very well behaved...) Will pulpit committees frown on that? Would a modest, disarming joke trhe first time I talk toa puplit committee - "One of our pastors has it happen with him, I'm sure you've got plenty of ladies who will try to set me up with someone, and if it's God's will I'll gadly take it" - be helpful? It's really hard to know how to 'date" - I've made myself a great people person, but because of being quite literal and other little things, I've actually had some say it could be very mild Asperger's Syndrome. (I have very slight cerebral palsy that isn't bad enough to affect my walking, so it is possible they arise from the same thing - trouble getting me out at birth - and are thus in the same quantity.) And, hard to know when to bring that up.

    Thanks for your help and advice. Edit: Fortgot to add I'm Independent Baptist.
     
    #1 ANewCreature, Jan 2, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 2, 2008
  2. Tom Bryant

    Tom Bryant
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    Nice to meet you, Doug.

    What does your home church and pastor say about your call to the preaching ministry? Do they use you in preaching or teaching in SS already?

    Your health issues will probably need to be mentioned if the conversation goes beyond the "Here's my resume." point, but not in the resume.

    I think you might have some issues that a search team would look at: your age, the blindness, being single. But, if this is God's will, He will overcome any human obstacle.

    God bless you.
     
  3. ANewCreature

    ANewCreature
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    Thanks; I actually just found the welcome forum, BTW, but I'm trying to keep myself from going to lots of forums.

    Our outreach pastor is also single, and a former missionary, so that's not a problem; it may help in that he knows a number of missionaries out West (he was in Utah) who could use the help. I actually thought thta church planting would be my calling, but you know, you have to have money to get to different places to raise support, unless a church totally supports you. I don't have money. Oh, well, I know God will provide something.

    They're supportive, trying to help me figure out where to go; Pastor Neil, the outreach pastor, put me in touch with a few people already; one actually sounded *very* promising, the man is supposed to be coming this way visiting later this week (a brother of his is in Ohio). In fact, I could really be a big help to him, the church out there in Montana has truggled with only him there, and it sounded really good...but the church is so small, again, there are hindrances. Still, it seemed exciting for a time, like that might be where God leads me, so I'm keeping the door very open there.

    As far as involvement, for years I've worked in AWANA, as a bus captain, in our inner city ministry for teens, in the middle school dept., etc.; so, there are definitely opportunities. I wanted to get everything done with my former career and the last of my courses first, and I think they're respecting that, not pushing me too hard. It is imoprtant to be a good steward of what God gives you, and it wouldn't have been a good witness if I'd just up and quit on clients, even though all I'm doing is estates and such.

    As for using me to teach or preach somewhere, I think now is the time, as the new year dawns, to start doing that in different classes and such. i might ask Pastor Neil if he'd lke me to speak at Forever Young (our older peoples' luncheon on Thursdays) one Thursday, too. I think that is a good idea, to make myself available for preaching in that church itself. Thanks.
     

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