If you’ve been reading the blog for a while, you know that this is the time of year when I get worried about the church finances. Our church is a transformation congregation that hasn’t completely arrived yet. Each year, the financial needs grow faster than our financial resources. Sure, our reach should exceed our grasp, but this is the stuff that gives finance committee chairpeople ulcers. Pastors too. This year the gap’s $23,000 (which is more than our savings).
But if you’re expecting me to write about that, you’re in for a surprise.
This year, we have a baby coming – Lydia will be her name. In fact, she’s coming tomorrow. She will either come naturally in the wee hours or else at 9:00 a.m. via c-section. She may have a problem with her kidneys – we’ll have to find out after she’s born. Also, we’re buying a house – we should be closing escrow next week and moving right after Christmas. And to qualify for the loan, we had to fix a bunch of stuff in and around our current house and find someone to rent it by the 15th. (It’s nearly impossible to sell a house right now in our market.)
For some people, that might not be a big deal. But I only have so much ability to handle things that are out of my control and that still have significant effects on my family, on the church, and on me. Right now, there’s absolutely no way that I can lay out a plan for the next month. I don’t even know what all of the variables are. It hurts my brain when I try to plan…
That makes is much easier to let go. I don’t know what the church budget should look like. I don’t know when to plan to move. I have to plan the house maintenance one day at a time. I certainly can’t make the baby come or do anything to prevent the c-section (though we did by an exercise ball :-)) Each thing falls into place as it falls into place.
I’ve been spending lots of time handing things over to God. It’s a discipline. I keep handing things over. Baby, budget, old house, new house… And God keeps coming through. Already most of the house projects are done. We got renters yesterday. And baby Lydia will be on her way tomorrow. Meanwhile, I’ll keep handing things over and trusting that God will handle the concerns of that day. Jesus said it, and I’ve read it a hundred times:
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:34
But now, because I have no hope of controlling it all, I’m getting a chance to live it. And, not surprisingly, Jesus is right. I’ll let you know how it goes!