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Posts Tagged ‘Tom Petty’


Tom Petty sang, “the waiting is the hardest part.” He was talking about long distance love, but I’ve found it to be true of all kinds of things in my life: waiting to be married, looking for a new pastoral call, adopting internationally. It is also true when renovating and expanding church facilities.

We now have a quote for a modular from the new company. We are not ready for our congregational meeting though. We still need the estimate on the renovation as well as the trenching to bring utilities to the modular. Very frustrating, but the architect has spend plenty of time making sure he didn’t set us up for failure. More on this later.

If/when we approve this we will wait 10-12 weeks for the modular to be constructed. We are now into April and August is looking too close for comfort as a deadline.

Expect the Unexpected. In preparing for renovation you will discover problems that you didn’t realize existed. We have found some problems with our sewer pipe. We will need a bigger pipe to service the bigger bathrooms in our current facility and the new bathrooms in the additional modular. We discovered that our A/C units really aren’t big enough for the facility as it is. Forget the addition of the narthex. We may not be able to upgrade them in light of the cost involved due to our size. But this is something we’ll probably have to do in the future.

Expect Things to Break. A few weeks ago we smelled an odd smell in the hallway. Our water fountain, or bubbler if you grew up in New England, was shorting out. We were considering a move around the corner. Now we will need to repair or replace it first. You can still get water, it just won’t be cold.

Expect Unexpected Distractions. A number of key people in our process have had emergencies that occupied their time, energy and money. The chairman of our diaconate experienced a pipe break in his home. They had the tubing that was used about 20 years ago. The upstairs bathroom had the break in the middle of the night, so that bathroom experienced damage, as did the walls downstairs. The insurance company, seeing more of these tube problems in the future, paid to have the whole home re-plumbed. The whole process took weeks when you add in talking to contractors to get estimates, and then the actual work.

CavWife was driving my car when she was hit totaling the car. She was not injured but I then spent the next few weeks looking for a car. That is a little distracting.

Things like these suddenly happen when you are in the midst of renovations and expansion. You better keep praying as you engage in this process.

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Tom Petty was more right than he ever knew- the waiting is the hardest part. By the time we got to our second adoption process you’d think CavWife and I would have had Ph.D.s in waiting. After all, both of us had spent most of our adult lives, then over 20 years, waiting for one thing or another.

We both waited vocationally. CavWife wanted to be a teacher, in a Christian school: a particular Christian school (mine is not to wonder why). After graduating with her degree in Elementary Education, she waited. No, she didn’t sit in a room by the phone waiting for them to call until she was covered in dust and cobwebs. She ended up working at the Bible Institute she had attended for 2 years. But her eye was always on that Christian school. For 8 years she waited, hoping, enduring long Adirondack winters.

She’d given up- the demanding anyway.  She still had the desire, but she was no longer demanding God do this for her.  She was amazed when they called. Oddly, it was difficult for her to leave upstate NY and her dearest friends that she met during that period of life.

I left the small city I grew up in just before I turned 25. I was going to seminary: over 1,000 miles away. I was escaping the cold, and a series of relational disappointments. Seminary wasn’t my plan even though it was The Plan. I thought God was crazy, but one day He turned the light bulb on and The Plan was suddenly sweet. So I wasn’t just running from things, I was also running to something. But my plan was to return to New England when I was done. Little did I know that I’d be stuck in Florida for the next 19 years. Sometimes the wait is how we move from our plan to His plan; it is a slow course correction. Our hearts need time to transition from our plan to His.

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