Saturday, April 18, 2009

Always


Here's my small attempt to do a conference re-cap. I'm so thankful that Sovereign Grace includes the wives for these conferences. I find it an invaluable time. My soul always leaves refreshed and envinsioned for ministy. Plus I find it easier to understand my husbands call and listen to what the Lord did in his soul through the messages when I'm actually sitting through them myself.

They were all outstanding and different in their own way but the message that impacted me the most was Dave Harvey's message on The Mission. Namely church planting. Probably no suprise there :) Well after working through Matthew 28 he got to the end of the passage and read,

"And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”


Now my emotions were already being stirred as it's been somewhat of a struggle for me these past few months. I needed this message to remind me of the "why" we were moving, leaving behind friends & family. With the reminder of the "why" brought excitement and encouragement. With the "always" brought a flood of tears. I do mean flood. It's one thing to cry during worship but to hold back sobs during a message is a little uncomfortable :) See in my unbelief I had forgotten the "always". I'm a bit of a pessimist, though I prefer the title of realist. But either way, in my sin, I can forecast trials and forget the always. As Dave contiuned to speak on the promise of God being with us to the end of the age I felt the Holy Spirit flood my mind and in a supernatural way applying "always" to each and every fear I have. I praise God for this much needed reminder and I can say that since that message a renewed joy and peace has come upon me.

Chris was overcome with emotion for different reasons. He was obviously encouraged that I was encouraged as he has patiently cared for my soul as I've worked through my fears these past couple of months. But this was not the first time he had heard this message.

He and our Sr. Pastor had attended an evangelism conference at the Pastors College roughly four years ago. Dave preached a similar message to this and afterwards Chris was bursting with desire to plant a church. They had great talks and he confirmed that he had always known Chris would plant a church it was just a matter of when. Now my husband would be kind and say at this point he said "we" needed more time before we were sent out. But in reality he said "Tara" needed more time. He was right. Four years ago I was struggling with newborn Trevor, still trying to figure out how to be a mom, Pastor's wife and well was just one big fat sinner. By God's grace and I do mean only God's grace, when talks resurfaced four years later he and the other Pastor's could confidently say, you are ready. Sometimes I feel like arguing the "ready" factor. I saw my dear friend Betsy who oversees the care of the Pastors college students with her husband Gary and pleaded with her to let us back in for another year. "I'm not ready!!!" But I think in some ways planting a church is like having a baby. If you wait till you are completely "ready" it would never happen :)

So although I still have had to fight off fears and battle unbelief this week, I'm fighting with the promise of always.

3 comments:

dancebythelight said...

Dave's message was the most impacting for me too (although C.J.'s last message runs a close second). Missions has always been close to my heart, well, for as long as I can remember. It was very encouraging and challenging to me. Thanks for sharing your testimony here.

Tara said...

I agree Danielle... It was hard choosing between CJ's last message and Dave's. I can't wait till the audio is made available and I can listen to them again!

The Martins said...

Tara, I really appreciate your honesty through this whole process. I think that it would be easy- especially in blogging- to skim over the heart issues or to minimize the struggles you've had. But your transparency also allows us to see what the Lord is doing or has done for your heart that we would have missed if you hadn't shared the tough stuff.
We serve a kind and patient God!
(PS you can relay to your husband- so many were blessed by his message to Grace Bible a few weeks ago!)