12/15/95 We arrived in Jellico on the 13th. God provided a 3 bedroom rental house for $300 per month. The timing was, of course, perfect. DW worked hard and prepared all the water, electric, and telephone arrangements prior to our arrival. This was the first of God’s provisions. I’ve begun searching for work.
12/19/01 My first interview was today. Rumor is of a factory to open here soon, so I checked into it. The manager offered me a supervisor position, but the job demanded I be on call 24/7. It was for the 3pm to 12 midnight shift and would keep me from prime family time hours during the week and perhaps weekends. I told the interviewer that I had children and could not commit to that schedule.
He clearly wanted someone he could train and depend upon for the long term. Believing that ministry will one day consume all my time, I told him I could not be counted on to be available over the long term. So, I declined the offer, but left him my application for any lesser position that offered daytime hours. Having stood firm on principles of family-first and full disclosure, I lost the possibility of securing the highest paying job available in Jellico today, but I am not afraid. God is also firm on His principles.
12/95 After that interview God began a shower of blessings. Though we solicited none of them, gifts were sent to us. These arrived during our first month in Jellico-- the month of December:
HL church $1000
SR church gave a resettlement gift of $6300.
NC church – sent winter boots and clothes for the entire family. We don’t even know them!
Leaving Texas, many individuals offered us odds-n-ends for setting up.
12/30/95 NOTE: My Mother’s health condition was worse than we had discerned before leaving Africa. She lived with chronic and excruciating pain. Doctors had not determined the cause or cure. Many times I slept in a chair by her bed to watch in case she woke in the night and needed assistance. It was difficult for all of us, but especially for her.
For Christmas we were given two large boxes filled with new winter shoes and boots. I was given a winter underclothing. A church in NC heard of us and were moved by God to send these items!
Yesterday, we got a call from R&C E in Texas. They’d been moved to call and offer to send us some support. I explained our doctrinal stance might be different from theirs, because I wanted to be completely honest. They had no problems and will be sending the gifts.
God is daily confirming to me that He is near and aware and involved. Also, for the past two mornings I’ve felt compelled to lay prostrate before the Lord during my prayers as I pray for Mom (Her chronic pain.). Yesterday she said, ‘Steve, today I’ve had one of those rare days when I’ve felt really good.
12/31/95 $160 left on our pillows and refrigerator by D & CS after they left our house today. They promise to give regularly.
Thus the year 1995 came to a close. So much had changed in 12 months: a baby had arrived, we'd moved around the globe, our mission in Africa had come to a halt, our mission in Appalachia had begun, and Mom had moved in. It was a year filled with a lot of stress. It was not one to live over, but it was a necessary transition. I suppose it was like that part of a woman's labor that doctors refer to as 'transition' -- painful, but necessary for the beginning of a new life. We'd felt the pain; we now waited to see what was about to be born.