Changing…

Huntington Beach, California 2Welcome to my blog. I hope it is inspiring and meaningful to you. Pardon the bare bones site right now. I’m just getting this up and running to help me flesh out my ideas on life and faith. It will also be a place to share thoughts on the changing nature of the church. It’s a new endeavor as I have experienced an extreme amount of change over the last year. Some of this change has been incredibly painful and some has been amazingly hopeful, both are hard to put into words. Our son Max died unexpectedly just over a year ago on Dec. 29, 2012 when he got the flu and then pneumonia and an infection while we were on vacation up in Wisconsin. He was 17. We had just spent a joyful Christmas with my wife’s family and then spent four days in a St. Paul hospital as his body rapidly failed. The doctors were baffled and so were we. The pain of losing a child is like no other and the year that followed has been a journey filled with every emotion imaginable.

But God has found a way to faithfully journey alongside us as we wade through the waters of grief.

This huge change also pushed me to wrestle with my call of 26 years of working in congregational youth and family ministry. While my call to do ministry has never wavered, I wondered if working in the local church setting was still for me. The church community was incredibly supportive and allowed me time to grieve, study, write, read and pray. Finally in the fall of 2013 I experienced what I call a nudge of the Spirit. I simply knew that my 8 1/2 years of ministry at this congregation and my 26 years of working full time in churches needed to come to a close. I resigned with absolutely no idea of what I was going to do next. However, I felt so content that God had something in mind for me.

It was not long after I resigned that I got a call from Vibrant Faith Ministries. Through a two month process of discernment I accepted the call to be a congregational trainer, coach and consultant. So as of Jan. 1 another change is upon me. I am very excited and blown away by how God has lead me over the past year. God has led me and now I embark on a new challenge celebrating the gifts God has given me.

I hope you will join me in discovering new and innovative ways of sharing the gospel in a world that is constantly changing. We must face the changes of this life so that God can change lives through us.

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6 responses to “Changing…

  1. Tom, congratulations on your new position and the blog…The next step on your journey.

    Changing Ministry? Assume every person you meet, no matter where and when, is a Christian. Speak with them (and the group you are in) in the same way you would speak with a group at church after worship. Those who already believe will many times jump right into the ‘witnessing to the choir’ mode. The nonbelievers will be swept along with 3 possible reactions…inquiry, observing in silent mode, or protest. 2 of the 3 open the door to further conversation, and the silent one continues to learn. You will be surprised how it ‘only takes a spark to get a fire burning.’

    God bless you and your family, bro’…always and all ways.

    Gerry

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