So when I first arrived I told Austin how much the Lord had blessed me. Everything here is amazing: Kim, home, church (buildings and people!), dog, cat, view, weather, etc, etc, etc. His response was "You sound like Job in chapter 1." Yikes. And how true, for my theme verse was really "The Lord gives.." and yes, it was completed a couple of weeks ago when some needy fellow decided that he desperately needed a HP Pavilion laptop with $1000 of Bible software on it in order to survive in this harsh, poverty-stricked continent. So the verse developed into "...and the Lord takes away..." but Kim and I were both blessed with His grace so that we can take no credit for it, but I can honestly say that our attitude was one of "...but blessed be the name of the Lord." And now, the circle is closed again, as in Job's case the Lord blessed him 10 fold. My new desktop makes my HP Pvilion laptop look like an overpriced paperweight. It's awesome. For the techies: 200gig HDD, 1Gig RAM, Pentium 4 3.2, and of course the ever-trendy flatscreen. All for less than the old HP. And on top of it all, we were greatly blessed by a finacial gift from our SCV family in the States so that we didn't even have to skip a meal or a commentary to afford it :) God is so good.
Still Clint here: The church is doing phenomenally well. I absolutely LOVE being a pastor! I have gotten used to preaching twice a week, plus Bible study with the youth (which God is blessing with growing numbers and interest). We are adding new members to the church every month, and are seeing tremendous spiritual growth among some longstanding attendees. Kim has been amazing. She has really blossomed in her ministry. People here love her, I mean really. She has been so cheerful and energetic for the Lord's work and she has made me feel like we made the right decision. Single guys: don't settle for less than a gal who will leave family and lands for the Gospel, even if that means Africa!
I find I have more time for ministry and reading and undistracted devotions than in seminary. So I hope that encourages you seminoids. The field is awesome, much better than seminary (which I also thoroughly enjoyed). But now I set my own assignments and reading schedule. Plus, the more you preach, the more you preach, which is why we got into this in the first place, right guys? What a privilege to soak in God's word all week and then unleash your heart from a solid pulpit to an eager, expectant crowd of disciples whose only cry is "Sir, we would see Jesus."
I miss USA in a soppy, good 'ol days kinda way, but I mostly miss my SCV family. It pierces my heart to think of my farewell sermon there, but I can't wait to see them all in March 2007 at Shepherds' Conf (Deo Volente).
Now to type some more sermons on my new 'puter. I'm lovin it.