Well, people have been asking, so I guess I should get around to telling about last Sunday. When asked, "how many people did you have?", my standard answer has been, "less than the week before." And it's true. It's easy to get caught up in the numbers game, which can be an emotional roller coaster. And raw numbers don't compensate for other factors (like Palm Sunday in a Catholic country!). So if you can't bear it, email me, and I'll give you the exact number, but otherwise, I'm going to try to be content from week to week.
The actual worship went well- we're all slowly getting a handle on our new responsibilities. I'm learing to run MediaShout (which is like a souped-up version of PowerPoint). Toward the end of the worship, I started letting Lauren run it. She seems to be a natural, though it will be a while before she could do it on her own. I don't mind running the slides, though part of me wishes I could be a part of the "crowd" in worship. I have to pay close attention and make the changes in time. Every so often, I get caught up in signing and forget the slide. But I'm getting better.
We're all working hard transitioning into this new phase of our work. Now that we have a building with a front door and a telephone, we've got to arrange for someone to be up there during the day. We get a fair amount of walk-in traffic, which is a testament to our location. We're also still working hard on following up on all our visitors. Several indicated that they wanted to know more about our small groups and joining our church, so we're scurrying to answer their questions. Others want to study the Bible with us, for which we're grateful. Several studies have been set up, and every week we have new opportunities. I think we'll have the hang of planning and executing our worship services just in time for the Parkers to leave on furlough at the end of the month. Then things will change once again, and we'll shift our schedules to compensate for their absence.
But there are some good things on the horizon too. We're getting a new team member, for one. I'm not referring to our intern, Paul, who's coming soon. Or to the Let's Start Talking team that's on their way in January. Nope, unfortunately this team member won't be able to carry their own weight for a while. We found out recently that Travis and Alicia are expecting! (I've been mum about it for a couple of weeks, but she posted pictures on Flickr, so I figure it's fair game!) They're due in October, and we're all thrilled for them! Alicia's having a really good pregnancy and has been able to keep up with all the inaugural excitement. Praise God, the Author of Life, for the anticipation of a new life!