Life from my last post through today has been pretty amazing. God made some major changes in our lives. It has been a wild ride full of His rich blessings. Let me take you to where it all began...
- My father-in-law Mark, showed a short video clip of a woman named Heidi Baker advertising her Compelled By Love book. My heart was warmed and my spirit was stirred toward ministry. That afternoon, as Geoff and I ate dinner, I asked him what he thought about us going in to full time ministry. The desire was planted.
- Geoff receives a text from his brother Greg that his church is looking for a full time Worship Pastor. The church is Redwood Family Church in Redmond, WA. The same church that my dad was lead pastor of from the time I was 9 until I was 18.
- Geoff and I visit Redwood Family Church and meet Pastor Todd and his wife Janna. The church really felt like home, for both of us. Geoff tells me then that they are looking for a full time associate pastor for worship and youth.
- Geoff and I discuss the idea of heading into full time ministry and find that that is what we desire. That night, Geoff emails Todd and the interview process begins.
- This month was a bit of a blur. There were a lot of phone calls between Todd and Geoff. There were a lot of roller coaster emotions for me. I was excited, nervous, scared all the emotions that go with leaving a secure life behind and saying yes to God. If we were hired on, we would leave our home that we owned in Idaho (not able to sell so we found renters, praise Jesus), jobs that we were established in and would head into the wild unknown of a life in full time ministry. So you can see why I was excited/nervous/scared to do this. Oh, did I mention that we would move without a job for me, that was the most nerve racking piece, to a city that was nearly triple the cost of living! Praise God that He had everything under control.
- July 8th: Geoff and I head to Redmond, WA for him to lead worship at Redwood Family Church and meet the congregation. At this point, no decision had been made to hire us on. We stayed with Geoff's brother Greg and his wife Ashley in Kenmore and drive around looking at places to live if we are hired on. The cost of rent made my stomach sink and made my nerves increase. I praise Jesus for His calming presence through this whole process.
- July 10th: Geoff receives a call that Redwood Family Church wants to bring him on as full time staff!! What a night! We were back home in Idaho and could not sleep! We got the call around 10p and didn't get to sleep until 1am. We just kept looking at each other and saying, "It's really happening. We're really doing this!" That next day I gave my work my 60 day notice. Our first Sunday with Redwood Family (RFC) was scheduled for September 1st.
- My last day of work was the 17th of this month. That was a hard day. Northwest Christian Credit Union had been a part of my life for almost 5 years. They had been with me through the death of our son Parker (they shut down both credit union locations to attend his funeral) and had supported me so fully with my grief and healing process. They were the BEST organization to work for.
- That following Friday, Geoff, Grady (his little brother), our daughter Norah (now 2 years old) and myself headed back to Redmond, WA to look for a place to live. Yes, less than a week from leaving our house in Nampa and we still did not have a place to live in Washington... Praise Jesus we found a cute townhouse in the Juanita area of Kirkland and had a move in date set for August 26th.
- August 25th: Geoff, Norah, our 13 year old chocolate lab Opie and I packed up our CR-V and the moving van, kissed, hugged and cried our way out of Nampa and headed for Washington. I remember, as I crossed the border from Idaho into Oregon I nearly had to pull over because I was crying so hard. I felt all sorts of emotions and the only way they were expressed was through nearly uncontrollable crying. I praise Jesus for His safe keeping and for His comfort during that five and half hour car ride to Yakima where we spent the night with my parents.
- In Yakima we dropped off our dog Opie with family friends where he would live out the rest of his days. The townhouse we rented allowed dogs, but the cost was way more than we could afford. That was a very sad night for our family. Geoff and Opie had been together Opie's entire life so to say goodbye was hard. I praise Jesus for His peace and comfort during this time.
- Sunday, August 26th Geoff and I rolled into our townhouse complex and began to unload the van. We met several new faces and I had the privilege of saying hello to old friends. It was a great day that ended with a wonderful BBQ on the Kirkland waterfront with new and old friends. Geoff and I knew we were home and that God's good plan was all fitting into place.
September - October of 2012 brought more beautiful blessings. Two days after living in Washington I was placed in a temp job in Bellevue from September - December. I was nervous about only have a temp job that had no prospects of becoming full time, so I applied for a full time position. October I was hired on full time, with a company in Bellevue, WA named Greythorn. I worked there from October 2012 until August 2013 when God opened the doors for me to work full time at Redwood Family Church as their Children's Pastor! God is SO GOOD!!!
Those are just the first few months of our whirlwind experience with God changing our lives so dramatically. And it didn't stop there! November of 2012 Geoff and I attended a conference with Todd and Janna called the Healing Nazarene. It was put on by our friends Abbi and Benji Rhodes. They are the lead pastors at Church of the Undignified in Seattle, WA on Capitol Hill and are doing amazing things for the kingdom. It was a beautiful conference where our worlds were rocked in a wonderful way. I'm not sure how else to describe it other than to say that Geoff and I both felt like we were different people when we left. We also felt like our relationship with Todd and Janna was cemented together. Where the four of us felt like a bond was created in that weekend that will not be shaken. God radically spoke into my life in such a way that I will never be the same again. My eyes were opened to His beauty and my heart was moved to see people have the same experience I did during that conference. I am still a work in progress, but I'm so excited for what God wants to do!
There are so many more details that I will share along the way, but the simple truth is that God moved us, we responded and our lives are radically different. No longer are we living a simple Christian life. We are now living a life that is focused on pursuing Jesus each and every day in each and every moment. We are focused on Jesus' mission to bring the Kingdom of heaven to earth through every interaction. We are focused on loving the one in front of us. We are focused God and that is enough, more than enough for us.
I can't wait to share more! God is doing so much! He is up to so much good!! Stay tuned!
Random side note: October 18, 2013, Victoria Mae Harmon was born and added to our family. She is a wonderful addition!