Sunday, October 17, 2010

Update on all things "Opperman"

Sooo...neither Brian or myself have done an exceptional job keeping you all updated through the blog this past year. We tried. It was always in the back of my mind, "Erika you need to update the blog." I would even reach for the computer, but then something else would come up. Argh. And so this was the story for much of our hectic past year. However, you can count on us to keep you informed on the "BIG" on with the "big" stuff...

Words cannot express our time in Australia. We have learned heaps about this fantastic "new" culture, ourselves individually and as a couple, ministry, but most of all faith. I have never understood what it was to COMPLETELY surrender and rely on the Lord until our time in Australia. I could tell you story after story of the Lord's provision and blessing that would nothing short of SHOCK you. Unbelievable. Part of our faith journey has been our future. The Lord's next step. The "whats next" question...

"What is next," you may be asking yourself (if not, please humour me). As Brian and I began praying about our "next step" the Lord kept bringing the word surrender to both our minds. Brian and I spent a lot of time in prayer surrendering our will to the Lord. And after much, much, prayer I told the Lord I wanted what he wanted. Whether that was to stay in Oz and do another year, or return home I just wanted my desires to aline with his. However, we didn't know what was next. Enter God. I will spare you all of the details of how the Lord orchestrated our next steps, but they are NOTHING less of a miracle. God never ceases to amaze me in how he provides and continues to bless us beyond our WILDEST imaginations (and if you know me that is WILD-ha).

Rewind about 2 months ago. We received a call from a church back home asking us our future plan. I really wanted Brian to say, "Your guess is as good as mine." However, he didn't. He kindly explained we were probably going to stay for a 3rd year, but were open to wherever or whatever the Lord had next (as corny and churchy as that might sound). As it turns out, they were wondering if we would be willing to be considered for a position in their worship ministry. After much prayer. And more prayer. And EVEN MORE prayer (got the idea, yet?). We told them we wanted to be considered for the position. So that began the process. A resume, video of Brian leading worship, much prayer for wisdom, and many Skype interviews later, they called to offer us the position. And we ACCEPTED.

Brian will be the Worship Pastor at Abundant Life Baptist Church in Lees Summit MO. Words cannot express how thrilled we are to serve at this amazing church. We had the honour and privilege of attending there for a couple of months before moving to Sydney, and absolutely fell in LOVE with the church. Before getting on the plane to go to Sydney Brian said, "If we could end up at a church like Abundant Life, it would be a dream!" And now look at us. God is so faithful. Blows. Me. Away.

As giddy as we are about returning to the States, this is a bittersweet time. We have days filled with packing and goodbye's ahead, which will be difficult. We have made some incredible relationships and it will be hard to say "goodbye" to our Australian "family."

But there you have it. You are officially updated on "all things Opperman."

We love you so much. And love doing the journey with you. We cannot express all of our gratitude to you for all of your love, encouragement, and prayer throughout this precious season in our lives. We are blessed. Beyond words. Our cup runs over.