Friday, December 16, 2011
The Open Door
I have to tell you the small version of how God opened up the door for us to Pastor in the same town where he called us and to the miracle of Tour of Life Island.
I was walking out on the front lawn of my new home. I loved it even though it was hard to keep up. God spoke to me as clear as anything and said" Would you trade your dream for mine?" I looked back at our new home and said " Yes I would. In my heart I always know God's ways are so much more than we could ever even imagine. "He will do abundantly above all....." We had prayed some prayers in Lebanon at that small duplex about where Anthony was to pastor and what we were to do with Tour of Life. You will have to read more details of that in my book coming out this spring. It's an amazing journey! (We were made fun of by old denominational people. They laughed under their breath and gossip is what they had for breakfast. While Anthony's father was passing away there was the ignorance of one saying "God must be trying to get your attention to come back to God." We had gone non-denominational 10 years ago with the blessings of God and are now happily in the AG. But since we don't look like the old denomination we were considered lost. Only we found what GRACE really means. Although we love them and there are some very good people there, God has called us out to a bigger body of Christ.)
It wasn't but a short time my father was diagnosed with cancer. Toward the end when he could still walk my mother called me on the phone and said "Let's go to Precious Moments" It was there that at the door when we were about to leave God opened up a door so wide it's still shocking for us to this day. Tour of Life started in 2005 after Anthony and I had taken a sabbatical from pastoring in Perryville MO. I heard God speak to me that shook my world. I wanted to design a place for pastors to come and rest. If they need professional counseling then that would be there too.
We started praying for pastors and their spouses. Whenever we heard of someone hurting they either received phone call or a dinner invitation. I would show up at pastors homes and churches and just bring them a basket. That's all I could do. Eventually we went on the web radio and started interviewing pastors. We just did those along with a lot of ground work for 4 years.
Back to Precious Moments. The lady at the door found out about TOL and took a card. Shortly after that we got a call from the President. When we went to visit the island it was like a dream because that place was so majestic. After 600 volunteers and a lot of elbow grease we restored the island. During this time Oak Street Assembly came open through God's hand we were voted into pastor there.
My father did pass away. Our home in Bolivar flooded and God moved us to Carthage. Tour of Life has ministered to over 250 pastors INDIVIDUALLY in the last 6 years. After a year of the Grand-Opening we have ministered to 61 pastors. Only 14 stayed at the house. It was such a struggle to get pastors to a Victorian home, pink carpet and lace. I was so disappointed. God always has a plan. We would have never even looked at Carthage if not for God's open door. Oak Assembly is growing and in great revival. Lives have been changed. Thank God for open doors