Summa Time, Sweet Summa Time
Location: Parma, Idaho
Date: 19 July 2018
Newsy Bits: I am writing this post from my sister and brother-in-law’s house in Parma, Idaho. Yes, we called it “Boise” but it’s actually about an hour away from the heart of the city. The views from here are amazing: vibrant green potato fields across the street, rolling hills of pasture behind, tangerine sunsets every night and stars so bright you don’t miss the daytime. We love it here. And more than the view, we really enjoy my sister, Larissa and her husband, Dick. Dick recently opened a food truck (if you are in the Boise area, check out their FB page for future events!) and it’s been so fun to get to help them work it at a few events this summer. Chris is an expert sandwich-assembler now!
We are in the area primarily for Chris to do a pastoral internship at Heritage Bible Church (HBC). So far this summer, Chris has preached twice, taught a class on Biblical Covenants and is teaching a class on personal Bible study methods. If you’d like, you can online listen to the audio of his sermons and covenants class. He is also working to keep up on his Greek (in preparation for his Greek Exegesis class in the fall) and also Hebrew. The internship is nice in that it doesn’t require set office hours so Chris isn’t going to town every day – but, let me tell you, he is working plenty!
The church has been incredibly welcoming to us. People have made it a point to introduce themselves and connect with us. The church has officially invited us to come back next summer as well.
Health Update: Overall, my RA symptoms are manageable. I’m so thankful for that! Of course, I have bad days (like today…) but so far, they are few. I do have other issues, though, that cause pain – I think I have a kidney stone or two. It’s been a month with the pain and they don’t seem to be moving. Thankfully the pain is much less than it was the first week so I’m doing ok. To be honest, I’m trying to pass it on my own as we don’t have health insurance yet to cover a trip to the doctor or a CT scan.
Future plans: Idyllic as this summer seems, there is still the ongoing stress of preparing for the future. I need a job and we need a place to live in Spokane. And, ahem, health insurance. Pharmacies don’t just give you whatever you want when you go in, weird! (Just one of the many things I miss about Malawi!)
I have applied at and am in varying stages of interviews for three different remote positions. I’m hoping to get a remote job so that if we decide to come back to the Boise area next summer (which seems pretty likely), I don’t have to quit my job again. I am well qualified for all of them and hopeful that the Lord will provide what we need through one of those jobs!
Finding a place to rent while being out of state is tough. We could send someone to look at a place or two but it’s not ideal. There are multiple places that are available or coming available so we are relatively confident that we can a find place once we get to Spokane. (Psst! Spokane people: if you know of a house or apartment for rent on the Northside, let me know!)
Heart issues: How many times does God have to provide in amazing ways for us to be confident that He is going to provide again in the uncertain moments? I say that I trust Him but my heart still quakes!
Last night an older woman at church introduced herself to me. She also has RA and a slew of other health issues. She didn’t take any of her current or past pain lightly but told me that God has taken care of her every time. Seeing a woman in her 80’s who has suffered more than I have but is still trusting in God’s faithfulness was such an encouragement! With each new issue that comes up with my health, it’d be easy to get a little more hardened and have a little less faith in God’s goodness. But God IS good. As Ethel said yesterday, I can also say: God has taken care of me in every situation.
We’re feeling a little homeless, a little sad as we long for our friends and ministry in Malawi, a little cold in all the summer air conditioning, a little dazed from all the quick changes, a little unsure about the future and a little fatigued from it all… yet, God is faithful. God is good. We are (still) learning to trust fully in Him and to hope in His sovereign goodness in our lives. I’m so thankful for the opportunity to get to trust Him again!
This journey really isn’t about us. I hope that by sharing our life and our struggles – both current and past – will encourage others to also hope fully in God’s goodness. Truly, He has taken care of us and I can’t wait to see how He will take care of us again! And even if He doesn’t do it in the way that we want, He is still good. He is still worthy of praise. He is still in charge. Yahweh is my Shepherd, I know I shall never become needful.
- Ongoing faith and hope in God
- A full-time remote job for Ashley with stellar health benefits
- A place to live in Spokane that meet our needs
- Wisdom for the future with this opportunity at HBC
- Strength to transition again back to Spokane soon (July 30!) – and to jump immediately into life, ministry, work and school there
- That God would supply us with our heart needs, namely, greater love and trust for Himself, while we wait for Him to provide for our physical needs
- Ongoing provision of help and finances for the work happening at CAPA in Malawi (you can be part of that by donating to them here)