Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Answer- Our talks at NPC

Jonalyn's marathon workshop with three other ladies was very well received. Despite the low turn out (which Zondervan expected), the seminar generated enough buzz to get Zondervan's attention.

The ladies emphasized the challenges and surprises of doing ministry as women. The metaphor of a 'stained glass ceiling,' came up frequently as a metaphor that even gifted women can only do so much, not because of their gifts but because of gender.

What Jonalyn and I suspected would happen (though it was not the thrust of the seminar) did happen. When given a chance to talk, those that attended wanted to run straight into the concepts and verses about why women were not allowed to minister with all their gifts. Some were unfamiliar with the 'complimentarian/egalitarian' issues at hand, while many of them were. The real answer to prayer was there was no animosity, no debating, no striving in the discussion. The openness transcended generational and traditional lines.

And Jonalyn's health is superb!

Yesterday afternoon, she mustered her energies into a stellar presentation on the soulish differences between men and women. You can here the beginning of this seminar on the National Pastor's Convention's website (select the song "Why Men and Women Need Each Other's Soul Differences"). The technical powers that be have already uploaded it to perk people's interest. In this workshop, I joined her, offering insights into masculinity and the many things in the church today that are not masculine, but tout itself as such.

We taught the the older and more experienced, people in the trenches of the church. It was an honor (and very humbling) to address them on topics, not about emerging generations, not about how to reach postmoderns (topics that our age group excels in), but a topic that is universal and overlaps all areas of our lives as humans. That they listened well and offered encouraging feedback affirmed us to continue to explore this aspect of appropriate humanness.

A few comment cards shared that we were young with a developing view but on the 'right track.' Others shared that they were mistified that Gen Xers would have the same view they have, even with the generational and cultural shifts. And many at Zondervan have told us they are glad to have us here.

Your prayers are with us in strength and encouragement. And we feel them. Thank you for joining us in this. Now we can begin to soak up the events the next two days for our own nourishment. This morning we heard Gordon Fee give a Bible study (we are indebted to his theological work in several areas!). Chuck Colson will be speaking in about 15 minutes and we'll be popping in on workshops by N.T. Wright today and tomorrow.

It is good to be here.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Answer- God's Hand in Serendipities

Well, on Thursday of last week I spent about 2 1/2 hours with my new dentist in town. As he worked on my tooth, we talked about spirituality, The Secret, the Roman Catholic Church, Original Sin and God as person or force, which was quite a challenge given the fact that I had my mouth open most the time. One thing he mentioned was the antibiotics he picked up a few weeks back.

With a half numb mouth I made the decision to swing by the Steamboat Walk-in Clinic and see if I could find out if this 4 week cold earned me the right some antibiotics.

I see people's prayers motivating me to do the added work (while still feeling sick mind you) of going to my dentist appointment and then waiting for a slot with the doctor. I see God's hand in providing a relatively un-crowded moment in that doctor's office for me to get seen in less than 10 minutes and out of the office in less than 20 min with a prescription for 2 medicines, both of which I'm happy to say did wonders to my body. Within the next 24 hours most my symptoms subsided and I felt an enormous boost of energy.

Now it's Monday, and even after spending 17 hours in the car yesterday driving from Steamboat to San Diego, I'm thrilled to be able to tell you that I feel great, strong enough to tackle my first seminar this evening, eager to share what God has shown me.

For those of you praying for me to recover, I wanted to update you on my health. Thank you, please continue to pray for Dale's immunity. So far he is doing well.
Off to prepare for tonight's talk.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Request- Gearing up/Getting Better

Well weeks like this are tough ones, as we spend more time behind a computer screen than we care to confess. And of course the gorgeous sun keeps beckoning us outside to play.

I (Jonalyn) have tallied up that in our next trip, this one to Southern California (we leave Sunday), I will be speaking eight separate times, eight unique talks to plan for, write, organize. And there is something in me that drives me to keep creating new talks, refining old ones. So I ask for your prayers:

1- May God give us both the diligence to listen to him as we complete these talks. We thank Him for helping us write out all the material, so now we only need to fine-tune.

2- I have not completely shaken this cold (this stuff is really going around). Today, I felt my energy at an all-time low despite good nights rest, vitamins and lots of tea. I need God's help to get well. Please pray for me to recover completely before we drive to San Diego on Sunday. Please pray for Dale to remain healthy and immune. Please pray for us to rest mentally when we need to.

3- Next week at this time I will have finished 8 hours of speaking at the National Pastor's Convention. First, a 6 hour Critical Concern Course on "Women and the Church." Whew! Then, that afternoon we have an 1 1/2 hour class on "How Men and Women Need Each Other's Soul Differences in the Church." I know we will need strength and all the graces of God (smooth travel, good nights' rest, trust in him, strong bodies, clear voices, creativity and serenity as we present) to serve the pastors and their wives in attendance.

Thank you for serving us in this work!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Request-Local Speaking Events This Week

This week we have been booked to speak three times, and all locally!

1- This morning we head out to Christian Heritage School to teach together for chapel. We'll be speaking on "Love Comes Near" trying to turn the student's eyes to what real love looks like. Please pray that Dale and I have attentiveness to one another as we are both sharing stories from Scripture (timing is key to make it work well).

2- Tomorrow evening we will be teaching the first of a four part series about Loving God with All of You for another local church., Steamboat Christian Center. Please pray for the event to be well-attended, so we can build a good foundation for the rest of the classes.

3- Finally, Dale and I feel the mounting pressure of many large speaking engagements this Spring. These next two weeks are key for us to read, prepare, study, pray and write. Please pray for us to be diligent, but not to exhaust ourselves. May God prepare us and our audiences in this time.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Answer and Request: Website and Steamboat speaking engagement

Answer: David and Joaquin have advanced their pace to complete the new website. Databases are made, design is coming together, processing our new approach the library is happening... David thinks we'll have a beta site to look at by next week! That's some serious progress!

Requests:

  1. Keep praying for David and Joaquin, that the glitches will be minimal and they will find the energy and the time to finish this project well.
  2. Also, we are starting a four part series for a local young adult group in Steamboat on "Loving God with All of You." You can get a taste of this series in our Library, under the same title. Pray there will be authentic connection and community, clarity and wisdom. These are eager hearts; our hope is that they will piece together more of a Jesus-way-of living so they will arise as fresh young leaders in this community.