Yesterday marked a serious step into bi-vocational ministry for me. I was able to get a four-to-six week temp position as a ‘personal care aide’ in a local facility for transitioning special needs students from high school to the ‘real world’ and yesterday was day-one for me assigned to a specific (and awesome!) student.
There are a number of reasons why this could be tough: I’m not sure I have the ‘makeup’ of someone who can successfully work a number of jobs, especially when one of them is of the consuming nature of church planting; I have a couple of health issues that mean exhaustion sets in easily; I’m going to be a new dad very soon and need to/want to be present with my family. I may get to the end of this first stint at bi-vocationalism and realize I need to find a different, creative solution to our need, and I don’t think that would be shameful or out of place.
But there are also a number of reasons why this has the potential to be something really great:
- Money: With some of our supporting churches not-yet sending in their promised amounts, and the uphill trek we’ve had to raising funding from individual and group sources, our personal support is running low. Money helps us do things like eat and pay rent, both of which are awesome.
- Delegation: working an additional job or two forces me to identify the things I’m doing that someone else should be doing because they can do them better and probably find more joy in them than I do. Over the next few weeks, I’m going to have to be more intentional about giving ministry away–and that really, really excites me, not because of what will be off my plate but because it means raising other people up.
- The future: if I can learn to hit my stride now as a bi-vocational church planting freelancer (:-)) while being a new dad trying to juggle life, ministry, and all the rest, it means I can develop a discipline that will allow me to keep working an additional job while planting The Bridge2.0–and that means more money for ministry/outreach in new ventures.
So, we’ll see how this next season of life goes, whether wildly successful or chalked up with ‘life lessons learned the hard way,’ I’m excited to see what God does.