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Happy Sunday


Today was a good day in the house at Northside. It was so good to be back! Sunday, happy Sunday! I haven't gotten the stats on today yet from Tom (our head usher). He always takes the time to extremely carefully go over his count and gives it to me Monday if he has to to make sure he has it exactly right. But suffice it to say I'm sure it's way down, people wise. It was Royal Ranger Pow Wow this weekend, plus Hillsborough County Spring Break. I knew even before I got there this morning that many people would be gone. But, despite that, we had a fantastic day! We honored our staff pastors which was something near and dear to mine and Larry's heart. Words can't describe how awesome it is to be working with those we now work with and do life with. They are absolutely "our family." Having a staff of your choosing and one that is also in unity is not only a huge key to effectiveness in ministry as a senior pastor, but it has a whole lot to do with personal happiness. Suffice it to say...I'm happy! Larry's happy! We're both happy! The staff seems very happy! I can't speak for them...but I believe they are. Yeah!

Now that the appreciation day is over I can blog about what I personally got them. Larry and I got the 16 oz. scrapbook mugs from Starbucks and I made each staff pastor a Starbucks coffee mug with their name and "TEAMWORK MAKES THE DREAM WORK!" and about 20 pictures or so of them engaged in ministry around the church. They were real cute if I do say so myself. Then we gave them a copy of the DVD that we had Russ produce for today. It was called, "TEAMWORK" with a song by the same name and featured tons of pics and videos of all of them. It was so cute!!! I think they enjoyed it. We had some people who serve under each of them in ministry come up and share something and present a gift and then we took an offering for them today as well. Now if I could, I'd just put all of us on a plane together and we'd take a staff appreciation trip to Hawaii. Some day when I get a huge advance for a contract on a book... :-) Seriously, I would love to do that.

I preached my message this morning on Losing the Weight of Rejection. Just in my own analysis I thought it flowed well, and I felt the response was very good at the altar. I've had a few people approach me in person this morning or e-mail me this afternoon to tell me how it touched them in some way. Larry said his class was very positive today as was mine - and that's usually the case.

Larry and I were kid-less this afternoon as the boys had fine arts practice and Savanna went to Chelsea's. I wish we could say we had time for some romance but that hasn't been the case. Although we need a date...a real date. We had one this past week but it was a double date with Gary and Tammy - we met them in Lakeland. They have been friends of ours for a long time but just began pastoring Evangel A/G in Orlando. And oh how excited we are about that!

Now, Gary and Tammy are WONDERFUL friends. We love them to pieces. I am especially grateful for their friendship because Gary is somebody Larry talks to a lot. In the past they have even talked on a daily basis during certain times in our ministry when they just really needed to bounce things off one another. This means a lot to me because I always wanted Larry to have a good guy friend he could do this with. He has Randy, but he doesn't call him as much as I'd like him to. I just believe for my husband's emotional health he really could use that more. A few years ago, Gary became the answer to my prayers. We knew them for years before that, but in the past few years they have grown exceptionally close. We love them to pieces and it was fantastic getting together with them as we did on our day off this past Fri. We could have talked several hours more we were having such a wonderful time. However, Larry and I don't really count double dates as "dating" because we don't have the time alone thaat we need. So somehow we have to accomplish that in the coming week. It feels like forever since we've done that although it hasn't been "forever" we try to make it once a week. We are both so tired today from many things we had to do this past week. We quickly ate lunch, and I took a nap and then got up and started cleaning and getting things lined up (dishes, etc.) for Newcomer's Night. Speaking of newcomers...

We got a new couple, David and Kelly, at the church this morning that I'm really excited about. They met me right away in the hospitality room and were very excited. They are coming from my good friend, Pastor Tana Miller's church in Cape Cod. They moved here last weekend, to Tampa. She told them upon getting to Tampa, this is the church they need to be a part of. They came in this morning and went on and on about how crazy they were about the service, how much it reminded them of their church in the Cape, and also the fact that the message seemed to be tailor made for them! David said his parents don't go to church and he can't wait to invite them. We're praying that their hearts would be open soon to accept his invitation to come. Anyway, we got a new addition to NS this morning - David and Kelly from Cape Cod, MA. Love it when friends send people our way, and of course we do the same for our friends all over the country. What are friends for?

I guess I passed the first test of at least somewhat measuring up to Pastor Tana. :)

...which is no small feat.

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