Thursday, August 20, 2015

A Day I Won't Soon Forget

Although I haven't officially started as the Associate Minister at Burleson Church of Christ, I had the opportunity to join the rest of the ministry staff in an incredibly cool activity today.  Beginning at 9 AM we loaded up a U-Haul truck with nearly 200 boxes of copy paper and distributed them to every single campus of the Burleson Independent School District.  We hit every elementary, middle, high, and alternative campus in the city and left them with several boxes each.  It may not seem like we gave them much, but for whatever reason, the teachers never seem to have enough copy paper and often end up having to pay for paper out of their own pockets.  It was almost as if Christmas came early as we wheeled the boxes into the schools.  The paper was provided by excess funds raised by BCOC's annual day of thanks and giving.  The congregation raised nearly $300,000 on a single Sunday last November.  Every single penny raised goes to some worthy cause beyond the walls of the church and no small chunk of this change went towards the reams of paper provided today.  What a generous congregation of people!

Before we left each campus we asked the administrators if it would be okay for us to pray for them, the faculty, the staff, and the students.  Every single administrator obliged us and some even invited their entire staff to join us for the prayer.  It was a really cool moment to get to ask the Lord to bless the teachers where Ashlyn will be attending school this year.  This evening Juli, Ashlyn, and I had the opportunity to meet Ashlyn's Kindergarten teacher at the school orientation.  I was thankful that I had had the chance to pray for her earlier in the day even though I had never met her.  Now I'll be sure to pray for her by name.  I may not have "officially" begun in my new role yet, but there's no doubt that this will be a day I won't soon forget.  Plus, if I'm ever looking for a career change, I can maybe get a job with Dunder Mifflin! - Shay    

Monday, August 10, 2015

3,350 Miles Later

Six weeks ago tomorrow, the Smith family landed in Kansas City, MO.  We're presently still in the KC area, but over the last six weeks we've driven over 3,350 miles across the Midwest and Southwest of the US.  In that time we've visited friends and family, debriefed regarding the Dublin mission with our home church in Austin, interviewed with a couple of churches in West and North Texas and have finally settled on a new place to live, work, and serve the Lord.  On August 30 I will "officially" start work as the Associate Minister at the Burleson Church of Christ.  We're moving to Burleson (15 miles south of downtown Fort Worth) this Friday and Ashlyn starts school on Monday, August 24. After living out of suitcases the past 40 plus days it will be nice to finally get settled into a place of our own.  We've made it our life's goal to serve Christ and his church and to work to see the Kingdom of God grow wherever we've happened to live the past 13 years.  After 8 years in Austin and 5 years in Dublin, Ireland, we can't wait to get started on this new adventure! - Shay