Steve and Angie

Daisypath Anniversary tickers

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Feeling way behind today

I'm sitting at the computer just waiting, and waiting, and waiting . . . for a certain little boy to finish yesterday's math.  Uggg!!  Quite honestly, we are all more than a little bit worn out with this school year!  Because we didn't start until late August and are trying to finish the semester before Christmas break, we are really cramming in the work.  This would have worked wonderfully on me as a child, since I'm the conquer the challenge type of person, but it seems to be less than successful for my family.  :(  The high school girls are also lagging way behind.  They have about three tests to take today before they can even start the day's work.  But, I'm just seeing it as a chance to teach long suffering to the kids!  :)  And mommy too! 
We bought six subjects for Hannah and Sarah, which in retrospect, was a big mistake (with their gym and fine arts, they *may* have 8 credits for this semester).  But sometimes we just have to buckle down and get through things in life.  I'm hoping they learn that lesson, and that it doesn't take a forfeit of some of Christmas break to learn. 
Things have been really, really crazy since Steve started working a second job.  I came across this quote the other day, and it seemed so fitting. 
"Let the wife make the husband glad to come home, and let him make her sorry to see him leave." - Martin Luther
I truly am sorry to see my sweetheart leave the house.  I have been reflecting a lot on the sacrifice of military wives that give up their husbands for months at a time.  In comparison, my situation is a piece of cake, but it is an adjustment for me. 

This is the letter Steve wrote to the church about his job.

Pastor Steve Answers Your Questions
About his part-time job at the Kokomo Rescue Mission
Why have you taken a part-time job?
I think everyone is aware that our church offerings have not kept pace with our budget this year. Perhaps that's putting it a bit too mildly ... We've been receiving about $220 a week less than out 2012 budget anticipates - yikes!  There really is no other way to bring our finances back into balance.  Even eliminating our entire Christian Education and Missions budgets would not have made up this shortfall.
Whose idea was it for you to take a second job?
It was definitely my idea.  In fact I really had to work really hard to get Walt & Denver (our Overseers) to warm to the concept.
Why the Kokomo Rescue Mission?
Short answer ... God.  He opened up this position for a second tie this year (I gave it serious consideration back in the Spring, but our Overseers were not in favor of it then).  The day-time hours are great (no nights or weekends), the pay is very good for a part-time job ($12 an hour) and KRM is willing to work around any special scheduling needs I might have.
Won't your ministry here at church suffer?
I hope not, but there's no question it will certainly change.  I'm doing my best to make sure my pastoral responsibilities are my highest priority - preaching, counseling, discipleship.  However some of my other duties will need to be curtailed - at least until I adjust better to this new routine.  I appreciate those who have jumped in to help out with setting up our building after services for our next event.
Think about this:  for our brothers in Christ in Central & South America, Africa and Asia bi-vocational ministry is the norm.  And even her in the US, there are lots of godly men serving in secular jobs while leading a small church.  I'd encourage you to embrace this change rather than dwell on the few negatives that might be involved.
Do you think this will be a permanent change?
I don't think so.  It is certainly my hope that in a year or two we'll grow enough to allow me to five u secular employment, but I don't want this to become an all-consuming goal.  Our goal should not be to have "a full-time pastor."  Our goal should be to evangelize, edify and equip others while exalting the Lord Jesus.
How can we help you during this transition time?
I'm so glad you asked!  Please keep my family in your prayers.  The cold-hard truth is that this change really impacts them more than it does me.  And as far as our church is concerned, my prayer is that you'll resist the temptation to fall into a maintenance mode.  I've heard more than one of you bring up the possibility of cutting back on our Missions or children's ministry budgets.  Please don't.  (I know I'm being bold here, but please understand the spirit in which I share my opinion.)  Our missionaries are doing a wonderful work.. Most - if not all - are seeing much more fruit from their ministries than we are.  Let's support them more not less.  I took this part-time job so that we wouldn't have to make cuts to the rest of our church budget.  A church can have one of two mindsets (1) let's take care of ourselves first and help others with what's leftover or (2) let's determine what and where God is blessing and join Him - trusting the Lord to take care of us.  Let's choose the latter.

The good news at church is that the addition is just about finished!  The carpet is all in now, and we just have a bit of woodwork to finish (which is NOT one of my "called on skills", so I'm free - for now).  There are two small walls to finish in the basement, but they are covered with construction "stuff" and probably won't be ready to finish for quite a while (after my maternity leave, I'm sure).

Well, my student is reading to me now, and we are about to break for lunch.  Maybe they will all get lots of "school energy" at lunchtime.  I don't recall that ever happening before, but anything is possible with the Lord, right!  :) 


Sunday, November 4, 2012

We have been having a group of about seven or eight neighborhood kids that come to our house almost as soon as their school is out . . . everyday.  It has been somewhat of a struggle for our family that, quite honestly, has a lot of work to accomplish, but wants to minister to our friends in need.  Yesterday, Hannah opened the door and was so very gracious with the kids.  She told them her siblings couldn't play but expressed interest in some aspect of their lives.  I was really pleased.  The thought occurred to me, and not that it was a new thought, just added to this idea, but she would already run a home marvelously!  I'm so grateful to have my girls maturing and showing responsibility. 

It occurred to me the other day that it is almost the end of the year, and I can't remember what my goals for this year have been.  Oops!  I looked them up.

1. Memorize chapters 3-5 of Ephesians.
Okay, I feel like I have a fairly good excuse for failure on this.  :)  Once we hit the Bible Bee this summer, all other memorization work ceased.  I didn't even think about starting it back up. 

2. Take pictures with my friends. In 2010 I lost two friends, and I realized I didn't have any pictures of myself alone with either of them. I decided last year I would try to get pictures of myself with my friends, but I didn't get a single picture last year, so it's going down as an official goal this year.
Ummm, I don't know why this is so hard!  I did get a pic with my college roomie when she was here this summer.

3. Start running again. The last day I ran was October 31st, so I'm sure it will be like starting all over again! :( I'd like to run a 5K in the 27-28 min range.
Hey, finally one I accomplished!  :)  I ran a 5K in June in 27 something.  I ran a few weeks ago, quite a bit more slowly, and I'm going to take a break for a few months. 

4. Start preschool with Joshua.
Josh is an official Kindergartner this year!

5. Do more individual discipleship with Nathan and Noah.
We are doing an inductive study on Genesis 3-5.

6. Do more personal Bible study - possibly make a study book for the kids on the book of Ephesians.
I'm still struggling in this area. 

Well, I just got a call that we are watching a few kids for the night.  Always on call around here!  :)  And there is a diaper that needs changed, and dishes washed. 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

We  have about five neighbor kids here this afternoon, so the afternoon nap isn't happening today.  :)  Steve is watching Hannah and Sarah's Abeka History lessons.  Yeah, not my favorite pastime.  They are really good videos, but I'm very happy to be done with school!!

I went to put a ticker on my blog counting down to the due date, but I think I will just wait until after the ultrasound on Thursday.  Steve is really hoping there are two babies, and he is having a good time talking about it (constantly) and teasing me just a bit.

I had the official "battle of the wills" with Mary this week.  I was really surprised how quickly her will was broken.  In reflection, I've realized it is really hard to gauge a child's strength of will.  I remember the battle with Ruth when she was about 18 months.  I absolutely couldn't believe how long she held out in her stubbornness.  She is my fairly quiet, thumb-sucking child.  Then there is my Mary that is just simply (as my Grandma Alexander would have said) a fart in a skillet.  I'm really not opposed to having children with strength of will; I'm rather in favor of it.  However, I am very much opposed to having stubborn children!  The trick is teaching / learning who to submit to in life. 

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Spring and Summer

Okay . . . I guess it has been quite a while since I blogged because this is a completely new format!

I once heard a mother with lots of kids say that with each new kid she had to let go of something to make extra time in her life.  I think blogging has been the thing that I've let go lately.  I don't think my blogs are really encouraging to anyone, but then I find myself reading the blogs of moms with more children than I have (now that is amazing to think about, isn't it), and just seeing how the Lord sustains them in everyday life is a real encouragement to me.  So, here is what is going on in Gollnerworld this spring/summer and how the Lord is sustaining me in my everyday life.

School is finally (for the most part . . . I tried to throw some 4-H project into the school formula, and it didn't go so well) out.  It just seemed like a very long year.  I schooled all through my mono in November and December, and the realization that I just don't have enough hours to keep on top of schooling all five the way Steve and I want them to be taught, it all just seemed to make the year really hard.  We looked into several options for school next year for our high school girls, and ended up enrolling them in the Abeka video school.  I felt terrible asking Steve to pay for that, because it means extra time on the mortgage, but I couldn't figure out how to stretch myself as much as would be needed next year (mainly with Spanish, Biology and Algebra).  But, a godly education for our kids is something we are willing to sacrifice a lot for, and we now have the budget to prove it!  :)

The most amazing thing that has happened this spring is that Steve has started running.  He still hates it, but he is doing it.  Hannah, Nathan and I are doing the Trojan Trot next Saturday.  I was really hoping to hit my 27-28 minute "New Years Goal" for the race, but I'm just not keeping up a 9 minute mile pace for all three miles yet.  Maybe by the end of the summer!  My college roomie is planning to run a 5K with me in August, so maybe I will be in better shape by then.  I really like running with the family.  Most of the little kids just play in the middle of the track with minimal running, but we have always been very family centered, so this fits us well.  Much better than dragging seven kids to the ballpark 20 times a season to watch one sibling play games, in my opinion.

This is our last week of babysitting.  It has been fun having a few more boys in the house (did I really say that).  It wasn't something I really searched out doing, but it has worked out really well for our family.  I've had other babysitting experiences that just didn't work out so well.  The boys have been good playmates for my little ones.

Well, time to go make some dishes for our Singspiration tonight.  I love my church, and I love eating with my church family!!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

2012 so far

Update on my goal to go as long as I could into the new year before spending money: Well, I made it 13 days before Steve had to pick up some groceries for me. :( That sounds pathetic to me, since I used to go three weeks between shopping trips, but the amount of food that this family goes through is somewhat unbelievable at times! We haven't made any more grocery runs since then, but while making breakfast for church this morning I used up my butter and brown sugar and I'm down to one egg. I've learned to make cream of chicken and mushroom soup, enchilada sauce and I can grind wheat or use powdered milk, but I'm lost on the egg and butter thing! On a positive note, I really like the pecan rolls I made this morning. Hmm, that would answer everyones question about how I'm doing about cutting back on my sugar intake, eh?!

For my praying friends, I'd like to ask special prayer for my little Noah's behavior. Now, I don't want you to think the poor guy is a monster. Quite the contrary, he is a very loving little guy, and I think most people would see him as mostly obedient. I'll take a little pause in the story to say, I think homeschooling is the best way to disciple ones children. You can argue about the education they are getting or whatever else, but really, to spend all day, every day, with ones child is, in my mind, the best way to teach them all I want them to learn. However . . . it is exhausting work!
Noah has an interesting character. He is super smart, super active, and like all the Gollner boys, super stubborn. I guess I should just make a long story short and say that I really need to focus on following through with his obedience. For example: I took a toy away from him yesterday because he did not obey me the first time I asked (good for me, I'm often too lazy to follow through with doing that), but when I walked out of the room I heard him say, "That's okay, I know where she hides my toys." *sigh* So that is the kind of thing I need to deal with. The follow-up on the follow-up punishment! I know he is only six, but I firmly believe the Lord lays particular children on my heart at particular times because of specific sins I need to deal with in their hearts. I felt really burdened for Hannah and Sarah about a year ago. I am really burdened right now for Nathan and Noah, but I'm sending Nathan to Steve for some one-on-one study now. That leaves me with Noah, so please pray! :)

Well, I've been thinking of things for days that I wanted to blog about, but now my mind is empty. I guess I'll just say that our family is doing well so far this year. Algebra was a struggle for a while, but since they are only 8th grade, and Sarah is only 12, I have time to re-do the whole year. Noah is getting close to completing his first grade books. Reading is starting to click with him, but he still has a hard time sitting in one place for the 10 minutes I require him to read each day. He likes to read, but his little body just can't stay in a chair. One day he ended up on my desk while he was reading. I told him to get down, and I really think he was surprised to see that he had climbed up there. I can't help but think of all the kids I had when I was subbing 14 years ago that I couldn't understand because they couldn't stay in one place for more than a minute. :) I sure hope his energy holds out so he can use it for the glory of God some day.
Miss Mary is growing way too quickly. I saw her take two steps backwards tonight! Really? I don't think 10 month old babies are allowed to do that yet. My mom always said I never walked, I just started running. That is pretty much my Mary!
Speaking of Mary, I've been on here a long time. I better go check in with her!