Soaking up and Savoring the Passing Moments

Looking back over the last couple months, life seems to be going 160 mph. The hard part has been the ability to soak up and savor each passing moment before moving on to the “next thing”. Here is a quick update of how our steps continue to move us forward.

–          After two failed attempts, Pete’s final appeal was approved and he was able to graduate from Regent University with a Masters of Practical Theology. Thank you for praying for us in those final hours.

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–          Zoe graduated Kindergarten from Virginia Academy. Words cannot express how grateful we have been for this school and the incredible impact it has made on our girls lives. We are going to DEEPLY miss this school.

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–          We SOLD our house at full asking price BEFORE we even listed it. Our realtors, Rich and Lena Benenati, have an incredible network and were able to pre-market our townhouse. We are in awe of how fast that happened. A huge thank you to this wonderful dynamic couple.

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–          Pete was Ordained. What an incredible service! See previous post.

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–          We said our goodbyes to Yen. This was one of the hardest goodbyes yet. Fortunately we are able to keep in touch via email. We look forward to a visit from him in the future.

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–          We found our new home! The clock was continuing to tick. We were 20 days from closing on the town house in VA so after our trip to the beach with the entire Brown family, we took a quick trip back down to Knightdale and knew that we had to find a house or bust! Doors were being clearly shut in other neighborhoods and the pressure was continuing to mount. Then finally around noon on Wednesday we submitted an offer on the house below. It has been sitting there waiting for us. It is a beautiful house, with ample space. Never in a million years did I think we would be in a single family home at this point in our lives. Much less a new home, with 5+ bedrooms, and a nice sized yard etc. Pete was a negotiating master. I just sat there quiet and amazed at how the Lord has equipped my husband for times like these! Everyone is working diligently to get all the papers done so that we can close and move in on July 8th. We both felt so heavy/weighed down by the pressure on this trip. I cannot tell you how grateful I was to be carried by the faith and prayers of close friends and family. I was reminded that this whole process is not easy. My faith is not always going to be on a mountain top high. We can’t do this alone. The Lord has surrounded us with friends that are believing not only in us, but FOR us when our faith is feeling weighed down. THANK YOU! We are so anxious to see how the Lord uses this house for His ministry. SO GRATEFUL!

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As we continue to press on, it’s so helpful to look back and see how God has guided each of our steps. Things are falling right into place. We have 17 more days here in Virginia. Of course we have our list of things that need to get done, but we are trying to soak up and savor the time we have left with our friends and family. It is not going to be easy to say goodbye…

We’ve always had an “open door policy” and that will definitely continue in our new house. Visitors are ALWAYS welcome 🙂

Peace in the Fog…

We went to the beach with Pete’s entire family this last week. Thanks to our youngest, I (Karen) was up before sunrise almost every morning. I would strap him into his stroller and we would head out to the beach to watch the sunrise. One morning there was a thick layer of fog. I could only see a short distance all around me. As we walked out of the house I could only see to the end of the street. When we got to the end of the street , then I could see the sidewalk to the beach access. Once we got to the sand I could only see the first waves breaking. When we got to the edge of the beach, I could only see so far out into the ocean before it was just fog. As I sat there, I was thinking that life right now feels the same way. It’s as if the Lord has graciously positioned a thick layer of fog around me.

This entire journey is monumental. If I look at everything that is before us, I become easily intimidated and want to shut down. I can’t go there. In order to keep my faith strong, I have to stay in the “fog”. I can see the task that is ahead and pursue it in faith. It’s not until we are past that task that I can see a little bit further to what is next. There really is peace in the fog….

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June 4th Ordination

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Promotion comes from God and in God’s timing

These were words I heard often. And in fact, 2-3 years ago I really needed to hear them. If I’m honest, I was a bit anxious for ordination. I had, after all, felt called back in high school to be a pastor.

Over the past year or two, God had been changing my heart slowly and quietly. No longer was I anxious to be ordained. I wasn’t angry toward anyone or any circumstances. I simply enjoyed the opportunities I was being given to minister to others at Community Church.

Then this year I heard the news. This was to be the year that I was going to be ordained. It wasn’t a done deal because I suppose I could have renounced God and turned away from everything. But as long as I didn’t blow up, I learned that 2014 was when it would happen.

On June 4, 2014, I had the privilege of being ordained as a pastor. Not only that, I was ordained along my friend for many years – Alain Noriega.

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What an powerful service it was! Dr. Samuel spoke and encouraged us in three things – to walk circumspectly, to witness and to work tirelessly in the ministry.

One of my favorite pictures was of something I didn’t know took place. During the ceremony, while Alain and I were kneeling at the front, my oldest daughter was in her chair 10 feet away and decided to kneel and pray just like her daddy was doing. Precious.

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Friends and Family

To our friends and our family – thank you. You have been shaping and molding us since the day we were born. It’s only because of you that we are here today; we stand on your shoulders. You taught us how to pursue God and how to listen for His voice and direction. You helped us sharpen our skills and tweak our leadership style. And countless times you were simply there for us. We appreciate each of you.

Onward!