I'm pretty sure I have to be the most horrible person in the "blog world".
If you took a look at my last post, you would have noticed that was over 4 months ago and also when we were still living in California- not even in New Zealand yet.
Well, please forgive me for not posting ANYTHING since then. Sorry!
Here's proof that we're in New Zealand:)
Alright. There's a lot to update on here, for those of you who read this:)
Since my last post....
My husband and I moved to New Zealand. Nelson, New Zealand to be exact.
We had about 3 weeks to settle in before we took on any responsibility for Calvary Chapel Nelson. Dave & Cynthia, the previous Calvary pastor and his wife, took SUCH great care of us while they taught us everything they did within the church so we would be ready to take their place in the coming months. They are a beautiful example of faithfulness to God's people and to teaching His Word.
Matt's first objective was to find a job. We had no kind of income yet. We spent most of our saved and fundraised money on shipping our freight container, plane tickets & church equipment and the website where our donors would support us had not set up our account yet. So, Matt was under a bit of pressure to say the least:) Oh, and Dave and Cynthia decided we caught on well enough for them to go back home to Oregon a whole month earlier than planned. Time was ticking. But we saw God working there without any doubt.
He laid out this path for us and there was no way we were going to let doubt creep in during such crucial times. Geeze, looking back, this all happened so fast.
Lot's of prayer came, and from across the Pacific Ocean too, to this little island and God started to show us what He had in store. It's still just the beginning!
After about 2 months of Matt applying to every job he saw pop up online and applications to agencies, factories, companies, etc., he decided to email a local American whose daughter Matt and I know very well through our church back in Riverside. He lives here in New Zealand and after hearing they were back in the country from a vacation, Matt and I prayed about the email he had written, put it in God's hands, and pushed "send". We knew this man would at least know the right people to help Matt find a job or better yet, maybe even have work for Matt to do for him. He replied the next morning:)
Within 2 days, Matt had met with his new boss and was given a full time job, will be working from home soon, and has the most flexible schedule we've ever seen! He's working doing some fancy computer type job and also property maintenance/man work:)
Matt's boss is also letting us use a vehicle until he starts working from home more consistently. With this job, Matt and I can get residency and won't have to reapply for the 3 year Church-Worker visa that we're on now. Which means we could live here!
After Matt got this job, immediately I began to look for houses to rent, as any eager wife would:) And since we knew he would work from home eventually, we could look for houses closer to Nelson where the church meets. We found one! It had a great price, a cute-already growing veggie garden, 3 fruit trees, 2 large bedrooms, new carpet and wasn't even on the rent market yet! We signed the papers and by the time we owed the 2 weeks rent, Matt would have had his 1st paycheck- God appointed timing!
At this point, we had all of our shipped household stuff in a local storage unit and had arranged to pick it up on our moving day.
That moving day, the worst wind and rain since we got here decided to show up. We were so bummed. And we felt horrible that so many people said they would come help us too. However, 30 minutes before we left for the storage unit, it suddenly stopped and the sun came rolling out clearing the sky and warming up the day. We were so relieved and praising the Lord!
That day we moved in with the faithful help of church and new friends! Matt I spent the next 3 weeks unpacking, arranging cupboards, shelves, rooms and closets etc. All the while Matt is also working a full work day.
Since my Church-Worker visa doesn't allow me to work a job, I've been spending my time doing "wife things" as I say, preparing for Sunday church service, Women's Bible study... And everything from cleaning to gardening to studying the Word, studying cook books and practicing my music.
I've really been enjoying preparing worship through music for Sundays and putting together the powerpoint for all the lyrics. I always try to implement a hymn or two and focus the worship simply on God receiving glory. As Chris Tomlin said to a friend of ours, "It's my job to get in stage and get out of the way." We don't have a stage, but that goes through my mind when I lead worship with my husband. We love getting to know everyone in the church and are becoming friends with them all! We've seen 1 girl give her life to Christ while Matt gave his message a month ago. That really encouraged us! And, she's growing in the Lord:)
Matt is working so hard and even more so at preparing his messages. His love for the Lord is growing in a whole new light and I respect him beyond words. He's sitting in the living room with 5 men for a Bible study as I type. I love him!
Our week flies by and we both have a lot to prepare running a church service. BUT- being able to spend time with God's people in fellowship, Bible study, prayer and just hanging out is worth it all! We love Jesus' church and we love these people:)
Now, more Recently...
For me, everyday starts with my time with Jesus and His Word followed by some personal worship. Being home alone most every weekday could very well become a lonesome time. But every day my Savior is there waiting so patiently for me. And His Grace washes over me every morning. This month I'm reading the book of Matthew again and am constantly reminded that Jesus' words of truth will stand for all time. What other assuring peace could I fall asleep to but that? There is none.
Since being on our own, I've been reeeeally enjoying cooking in my own kitchen. And of course my husband enjoys helping... eat it:) He tells me everyday how proud he is of my growing confidence in the kitchen and it's affirmed with his silence and smiles at the dinner table ;)
And if I don't say it enough or if there's any doubt... I love my husband beyond what I ever though possible. He's a Godly, humble and hard working stud of a man. I don't want to seem as though I'm bragging, but he is a genuine work of the Lord and I am drawn closer to God because of the man he is toward me!
We just celebrated our 1st anniversary on Oct. 15 and we went camping on the beautiful New Zealand Kina beach. We're spoiled with this country's beauty ;)
In the meantime, I'll post some of my favorite and simple recipes that I've come across these past few months.
I'll also post the latest with the Calvary Chapel Nelson Church and all the things God is doing here!
We serve a mighty God, we're here to serve His people and proclaim the Truth of Jesus:)
My husband just handed me a bowl of ice cream! I gotta go:)