Dear friends far and near,
Phyllis encouraged me to pass on this prayer request to all of you who aren't in our home churches, but would want to be informed of this need.
I talked with church leadership here last week about my taking a time of sabbatical, a break from my over-involvement in various ministries (in a church where one can never do 'enough').
They approved a sabbatical, at least a short one, and I will be mostly pulling back to 'only' preaching on Sundays, helping lead congregational singing, and singing solos myself.
(I will also be involved in periodic meetings w/the youth as we prepare for an upcoming VBS at the end of August.)
Please pray that I can graciously explain why I need/want this break to people who have never considered the idea. I may meet with condemnation, manipulation, or accusation. (i.e."No youth meetings?? Those young people will leave the church and walk away from the Lord - and it'll be your fault!!")
It's truly a foreign concept to many here. They live under the driving need to 'do more for God' and heap guilt upon themselves and others when they think we fall short. (Which we always do, don't we?)
I've already had one rebuke in passing "Come on, you just had a month off in the States - how can you need time to rest - jump right back into things!"
Pray that I may use these conversations to talk about a life lived by grace, in dependance upon the Lord and His strength.
Also be praying that this can be a good time for our family to spend together, as well as a time to consider direction for our ministry in the future.