“God send me anywhere, only go with me…
Lay any burden on me, only sustain me…And sever any tie that binds my heart,
Except the tie that binds my heart to Yours.”
I can’t say everything I’d like in a single post, but will try to share some of the important details. At the end, I will share a few things about the children since some of you have asked.
First, I will soon be moving away from Crossville, Tennessee, where I have lived for 15 years and where I have raised my sons. At the end of 2004 I closed my home school business, Elijah Company, with considerable debt. Since then, I have been working two jobs. Crossville is a small, rural town where most of the available employment is in the warehouse industry. So the jobs I have been able to find have been very limited.
A good friend has offered me employment in Nashville and the work would be along the lines of what I have been doing for several years. However, I also have a couple of other possibilities:
Some time ago I became friends with a unique man who lives in my town. He is one of the world’s experts in the arena of designing and building the communications and networking portion of extreme-scale projects (airports, high-rise buildings, etc). He has recently become general contractor on a project to build the world’s largest oil refinery in Saudi Arabia. It is possible that I could join him on this project which might help me pay down some of the debt left from the closure of the business.
Since I will not know for at least another 90 days if the Saudi option will open to me, I intend to take this time to visit some dear friends in Israel. One of these friends is a leading tour guide in Israel (www.yossimaimon.com) and has written a book of stories he tells on his journeys with tourists (www.discoverisrael.org). His book needs a re-write, and I have made myself available to help him do this.
So, here is what I have in mind: I will spend the next while in Israel (from a few weeks to 90 days). If the Saudi option materializes, I will move to Saudi Arabia for an indefinite period (the project is scheduled to last 4 years). If Saudi doesn’t work out (and the job in Nashville remains open), I will move to Nashville and work with my friends there. Of course, the Lord has the right to redirect any of this as He chooses.
At this point in my life, I only have 2 desires: To do something that the Lord, Himself, considers worthy of my time and energy; and that it has something to do with people.
Some of you have kept in touch with me via email or by phone and have asked that I keep you informed of what I am doing. Since I don’t want everyone to receive mass emails from me I have decided to use the medium of this BLOG to keep you informed. Those few of you who are really interested in knowing what I am doing can look at the blog whenever it suits you.
Remember: A blog is public. So, if I do end up in Saudi Arabia and write from there, I will be forbidden by law to mention spiritual things (this could be more problematic than if I were in China). Therefore, I will NOT be sharing spiritual matters from SA. You will just have to read between the lines of what I am saying to understand how God is working with me over there. Also, the blog allows readers to respond. If you do so, I ask that you NOT say anything spiritual. Instead, email me at my personal email address which is firstname.lastname@example.org. I will answer personal emails if, and when, I have time.One last issue regarding emails: Some of you forward emails to me that you have found interesting or humorous. I ask that you NOT do this while I am overseas. I get enough SPAM on my email as it is. Sophie, I love to hear what’s going on with you. Just don’t send me anything other than personal information, please.
At my age, I am probably running the last lap of the race spoken of in Hebrews 12. I would like this lap to be my “personal best” as I look toward that “Well done, good and faithful servant” when I stand before my Father. Paul told Timothy, “We have brought nothing into the world, so we cannot take anything out of it, either. And if we have food and covering [see Matthew 6:33], with these we shall be content. But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction.” (1 Timothy 6:7-9) I have always encouraged my children to “follow their hearts”, doing whatever God has gifted them to do in this life without concern for whether or not they will end up with the “world’s riches”. Now, each of them is encouraging me to do the same.
Speaking of the children (how’s that for a segue?), some of you have asked how they are doing. My daughter, Catrina, (43) lives in Atlanta and is a social worker. She says, “I love my work!” (which is more than most people can say of what they do). God has perfectly gifted her for this line of work and she shares with her Dad a love for people. She has two teenage sons. I am very proud of her. Seth (25) is currently in transition from his job as personal assistant to a pastor in North Carolina. Seth is gifted in many ways, and is being pulled in different directions by several ministries and businesses to work for them. As of this date, he is in Brazil on a mission trip with Randy Clark, but has not decided what he will do upon his return. James (23) works from home as a stock options trader. James is capable of doing just about anything he puts his mind to. He is also a talented dancer and actor and is currently in a lead role in the play, Holly Dolly, in a theater near our town. Blake (20) is a full-time professional actor doing musical theater. He aspires to work in the film industry. He has been nominated for the Make-A-Wish program and expects to be meeting with Mel Gibson shortly. We will have to wait to see what comes of their meeting! Many of you have asked about the health of James and Blake. I am happy to report that they are doing pretty well.God bless you all and let me know how you are doing so we can stay in touch.
Shalom for now. Chris