1) I celebrated 5 years of marriage. Emily Mayer got the worse trade-off in history when she said, “I do” to me July 12, 2003. I can’t believe that I landed such a beautiful woman. She is truly a constant reminder of the grace of God.
2) I was blessed with my second son Athanasius Clive. Children all such a blessing from the Lord! Athan is yet another reminder of my need to rely on my heavenly Father.
3) I returned college to finish my BA in History and pursue my teacher’s certification. It became clear to me in 2008 that I couldn’t expect my bills to be paid by my church. I’m not opposed to being “full time” but I think it is naïve (and probably unbiblical to a certain degree) for every pastor to expect this. Even Paul had an industry. I’ve got background in two industries (collections and playing cards) but I don’t intend to be in either long-term for many reasons. I’m so glad I made this move. I think I should be certified to teach by this time next year.
4) I reduced my living expenses to 1/3 what they had been at the end of 2007. I realized in the middle of last year that our lifestyle was reckless and unsustainable. We got out the shears and have pruned our life back massively. It has been painful and humbling. However, coming to the end of this year I think we are finally getting somewhere financially.
5) I resigned my church planting effort in Cincinnati for a season. I intend to explore this subject more on my blog in the first quarter of the New Year. However, I can kind of sum it up by saying it was the right thing for the right reasons in the right location at the wrong time. This break is definitely just for a season of healing and re-preparation. I’m still committed to the making of disciples (aka church planting) in the Greater Cincinnati Area.
6) I became so ill that I feared that I might die or be scarred for life. I had a crazy high temperature for three days and lost my voice for two weeks. My voice still hasn't recovered. It was the first time I've felt helpless. It shook me to my core and caused me to revaluate where I stood with God.
7) I became a son of divorcees. This summer my parents decided to “part ways” after being married for one year shy of three decades. The paperwork isn’t final but I can tell you that their decision is. I was shocked how broken I was over this news.
8) I experience complete “church planter burned out.” Again, I intend to explore this subject more on my blog in the first quarter of the New Year.So there you have it. What were your biggies in '08?