This coming Sunday, our church has a voter’s meeting with a single item agenda. That single item is to decide whether or not to hire Toby as their Associate Pastor.

If they vote “yes”, we stay here in Minnesota and Toby becomes pastor in July. If they vote “no”, Toby finishes his vicarage and receives a call to another church.

vote-4-tobyIn preparation for this big vote, I thought about making pins that said, “Toby for Pastor, 2016” or “Keep Calm and Vote 4 Toby.” And then hand them out at the services and during the Sunday school hour. Maybe even bake cookies for everyone. But the voice of reason and appropriateness (which most often sounds exactly like my mother’s voice) was screaming, “Absolutely NOT!”

I hope you can appreciate the awkwardness of our situation, though. The last couple of weeks have felt like an odd cross between an intense probationary period and a campaign for prom king.

At my place of work, I too have probationary status, but it won’t end in a school-wide vote. All I have to do is show-up on time, be respectful, and get the job done. The people who eventually will decide whether or not I have fulfilled these requirements, are only a handful of superiors, not the entire school.

In Toby’s situation, however, just about everyone gets a say (minus children and non-members). Although, we have had a few children ask if they could vote. One elementary student said she would vote “YES” for Toby. And one middle school acolyte leaned over during service and shared his support for Toby. “I hope you stay,” he whispered. (Very sweet of them.) So that’s two votes that don’t count, but we figure they have influence over their parents, so that could potentially be four votes.

Two church members told us their votes could be bought. You may think less of me, but I have no problem wearing Vikings football gear, or handing out the recipe to my sweet dinner rolls.

That brings us to about six votes. And considering there needs to be a majority vote to pass, I better start printing those pins and baking those cookies.

Upon seeing this photo of Toby taken on Ash Wednesday, my friend declared, "After those socks, nothing can rock your church."

Upon seeing this photo of Toby taken on Ash Wednesday, my friend declared, “After those socks, nothing can rock your church.”




Filed under Ministry, Miscellaneous thoughts, Work

5 responses to “VOTE 4 TOBY!

  1. Beth Johnson

    VOTE FOR TOBY !!!!
    In Him,
    Beth Johnson

  2. Piotr

    You would have our votes, but we are nonmembers. Hope you stay…

  3. Renee Gibbs


    I’ll be praying that your congregation calls Toby this week. That is a call from the Lord, not just being hired as the world does. Since you won’t be coming back here to STL for us to enjoy, we hope you get to stay there in MN. You seem to have adjusted to winter. Is it the eternal winter of Narnia? How about Turkish delight?

    Love in Jesus, Renee

    • Thanks, Renee! I joke about this call and “the vote,” but I have wonderfully and mercifully seen God’s hand through this whole process. We love our church and we look forward to God’s decision made through his people on Sunday. God will continue to guide us no matter the outcome. And we are so blessed to be a part of the story. BUT WE DO MISS ST. LOUIS! And Toby and I think of you and Jeff on a regular basis, thanking God for you and all that you taught us and encouraged us in! Here’s to the next chapter of our lives!

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