A mentor friend of mine once told me that the bigger the thing God asks us to do, the greater the confirmation will tend to be. So far I’d have to say he’s right.
Five years ago I was nestled happily in a thriving youth ministry in a Southern Manitoba town, minding my own business and enjoying the life God had given us. We’d watched the ministry grow from 42 kids to about 45 leaders. I was definitely in “the zone,” until the day a friend called from Southern Ontario.
He wanted me to pray about coming on staff at their rapidly growing church. My first reaction was “Oh, wow.” My next reaction was “Oh, crap.” The opportunity didn’t pan out, but God used it to dislodge my mind from a rut that was forming. As I prayed about our future, God spoke the words “One year.” I wrote them down in my prayer journal. I’d served eight years there in Winkler without a single offer, phone call, or email about another ministry. Nothing. In my ninth year, I got six invitations.
Two of those six came from churches in Calgary, Alberta. One was a thriving church plant. The other, a struggling mid-sized church. I was short listed on both, until God nudged us toward the struggling church, a congregation with about forty youth and leaders put together. If that. The church plant was clearly a better career move, but God had spoken.
Candidating at the smaller church was like drinking out of a fire hose. We felt very strongly about looking for a house that same weekend, and God led us to put an offer on a cute home in a nice neighborhood contingent on how the church vote would go the next day. The vote was 100 percent. We got the house and the job within twenty four hours!
And get this… when I looked at the actual possession date, July 22, God reminded me of the words he’d spoken the summer before: “One year.” I found the entry, and it was dated July 21, the day we pulled our Uhaul out of Winkler. We arrived on July 22. One year to the day!
A stunning act of guidance. But more was yet to come!