first day of (grad) school in the van voorst house. (and some other news, too.)

todd started classes for his Masters in Theological Studies yesterday.  you mean you're surprised?  you did not see this coming?  considering he only found out on tuesday that he would be enrolling, we're still a bit surprised ourselves, so we feel you.

i can't wait to compare this to his last-day-of-grad-school photo to see how much he'll have grown!

know what else?  he's taking these classes because on tuesday, in a very strange and unexpected and crazy-god kind of way, he got offered a pastoring position at candeo, and it's required of church staff in our network to go through the two-year program.  it's a weird story how this all came about.  considering weird stories are my specialty, i'll just go ahead and tell it.

todd has talked about the desire to pastor full-time, pretty much the entire time i've known him.  he loves jesus, loves communicating the gospel, and loves discipling people.  this has been growing even more so now that we're part of such an incredible church plant and he's had even more opportunities to minister to people.  he's felt for a while that his current job only takes time away from doing what he really loves and is good at.  additionally, he has been really unhappy at work over the last year, and it has gotten to a pretty desperate point lately.  we've been praying for months and months that god would bring him a different job, even if it was just another random job.  (chances are, it would be better than what he was doing.)

so, we had decided to really get aggressive about pursuing other options.  on monday, we had decided that by the end of the week, we would have ordered LSAT prep materials and todd would start studying to try to get into law school.  we figured a law degree could offer him opportunities to use his strengths and gifts, and also open doors for unique chances to minister to people (either through offering pro bono services to our local church, defending the defenseless, etc.)  the downside of the law school route, though, was the fact that, even if he started studying right away, the soonest he could actually start would be august of 2016.  which doesn't offer a ton of comfort when you're wanting to change things up, like, rightnow.  (it also had other issues to navigate, like how most law schools a) cost a ton of money, and b) don't allow you to hold any kind of job while enrolled so that you can dedicate yourself to studying.  for three years.  and our kids have grown accustomed to things like food and shelter, so that could pose a problem.  but we would figure it out once it got to that point.)

luckily, he had a job interview scheduled for tuesday afternoon with a debt collection company here in town, for a job that could hopefully tide him over until law school started.  so we spent time praying together on monday night that he would have a job offer on the table by tuesday evening.

so here's where god gets all funny and mind-blowing.

todd had planned to get together with paul and stan, two really godly guys in his life and the pastors at candeo, to just talk through future plans and ask for their wisdom and advice.  as it turns out, they came prepared with answers to todd's questions about the future!  there has been some restructuring of the church staff lately, in addition to the continuing needs of a growing church, and they asked todd to come on board as the administrative pastor.  

so he DID have a job offer on the table by tuesday night.  it was just not one he even knew he had applied for, so it was very out-of-the-blue, and we are still wrapping our minds around our giant, unpredictable god who provides for us in ways we couldn't even imagine he would.

i'm so excited for todd and for our family as we start this new chapter in our lives.  his first day at candeo is september 8, exactly one year to the day since the launch of candeo last fall.  god is ridiculous, y'all.  that's all i can say.  also, i think he will be teaching us dependence, because september 8 is also the day i had planned to start homeschooling for the first time ever and also start potty-training finneas.  also, todd will commute to ames once a week for classes.  so stuff is about to get crazy.  pray for us.  god obviously hears and answers!


Danielle Tiarks said...

No freakin way. That is awesome, Todd!!! Congratulations!! I'm so glad you finally have a job where your gifts and talents and passions are used to their full potential! That is such an AMAZING blessing!!

todd said...

mind = blown

The Crislers said...

I feel like I'm a lot less surprised than you guys are. I'm excited for the people of Candeo; they are beyond lucky to have Todd shepherding them and have you as a PW (you DO realize you're about to be a Pastor's Wife, right? This is simultaneously hilarious and So Right).

Jessica said...

Congratulations! WOW!
Todd was destined to be a Pastor; I think all of us 'back in the day' who attended the Light could see that. :)
He gets to use his gifts AND earn a living - the perfect merger of all things. Good on ya, God! :)

Our life in pictures said...

Love seeing how God's working in our lives when we kinda forget that He might have a plan for us and we're trying to figure it out and it's obviously all wrong! That's awesomeness! (and my not robot word is camio which is sorta like candeo....well not really but kinda)