Yesterday, after boarding a plane to Orange County, CA, I sat down with my book, and a cup of steaming hot Starbucks coffee…Venti Yukon Blend. After takeoff, and after a few pages, something happened. It’s all a blur now…but I managed to knock over a nearly full Venti directly into my lap. Those of you who are Starbucks drinkers know that they prepare coffee just below the temperature of molten lava…so you can imagine how startled I was not only to experience the blessing of such coffee burning it’s way through my skin, but also the realization that I would have to sit in such a condition for the next 3 hours. The flight was full…so, I sat in it for 3 hours. Rough beginning to the trip.

Our tenure at HOCC began a bit bumpy too. I arrived at the ripe old age of 26, coming off what had been a fairly difficult departure from a previous congregation. Emily was 7 months pregnant.

The ministry itself was OK, but when Anna was born, she had to have surgery 1 week later–a LADD procedure to correct an internal organ problem. It put us under quite a bit of pressure just because of the newness of it all–new ministry, new home, new (and first) baby, just a lot of new.

It was an early challenge spike that the Lord brought us through…and he always has.