Last year, our long-time-serving Church Administrator and Financial Secretary retired to a life of traveling, fun, and love. The position was 3/4 time and the search began immediately for her replacement. After 8 months, the right fit was not happening.
I had been ‘working’ on a whole host of things that included Children’s Ministry co-rep for our denomination’s conference and Discipleship Team, speaking and training around the country, coordinating two networking groups, writing, reading, taking and leading bible study, all important and wonderful mostly-volunteer-work that mattered. But now that we are true empty nesters with grandbabies that live way too far away, we wanted to improve the family balance sheet in preparation for ‘later.’ I had been working ‘part time’ since our little ones were little ones.
The other consideration was that although our finances were secure, like most Americans, we were probably one medical procedure away from “OH NO!” Like Dave Ramsey says, “We didn’t have an expense problem, we had an income problem.” The planning freaks that we are, we started praying about it, waiting in anxious expectation for God to answer those prayers.
Sitting on the back porch with Mr. Bob after an amazing retreat weekend surrounded by the greatest servants on the planet, he suggested I apply for the Church Administrator and Financial Secretary job…..wait for it…in addition to serving as the Director of Children’s Ministry. I worked my way through college by running the customer service desk at the local A&P grocery store and as a bank teller. Before going into ministry and raising our family, I was an Assistant Vice President of Investments at a huge clearing house bank in south Louisiana. I fully understood debits, credits, deposits, expenses, assets, and numbers.
Not one to leave any stone unturned, we put together a proposal to submit to the Staff Parish Relations Committee. I asked for prayer from a couple of friends who serve on my personal board of directors.
The SPR Committee accepted our proposal and I started both positions…wait for it… the week before Vacation Bible School.
I’ve been at the full time position since June 15th. I’ve had to learn a few new things like the church ledger system, ACS, and the proper protocal for a whole host of situations. But I didn’t have to learn the faces, the hearts, the storage cabinets, the building, the dna of a new organization. I love the folks who call this church ‘home’ and I am committed to the staff who serve here. We already know each other. I did have to adjust my schedule to be ‘in the office’ Sunday through Thursday, but the blessings have been profound. I resigned a few of the organizations where I was volunteering and reset some time priorities to make it work. SPR agreed to let me continue my speaking engagements and we have precious volunteers to cover the office when I am out.
My greatest challenge: I have to adjust my ‘girlfriend-in-the-Lord’ time and bible study may be for a party of one until I get my schedule to operate most efficiently. I chose the audio cds for the study I just started so I can continue to use the commute time even when I’ve finished the study. I’ll be making more phone calls, writing more notes, having afternoon tea instead of lunch, and really guarding my Mr. Bob time on Saturdays since it’s our only day off together. Priorities.
God answers our prayers that continue to put Him first. Everything is for a season and a reason. We didn’t want a season to just happen for us, but rather we chose to be intentional about beginning a new season. We covered it in prayer and left no stone unturned, no opportunity was labeled with “I don’t think so,” or “I can’t.” This is my new season. What does your new season hold?
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” Ecclesiastes 3:1
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