It has again been a long time since I wrote last. I apologize. I am not going to offer up some excuse that would allow you to forgive me until I do it again. Instead, I am just going to ask you to forgive me. Things have been going well here at Northline. We have had some very unique and powerful services that I pray God is using to leverage Himself into the lives of people who will be changed forever. We have been busy in the remodeling of some of the church areas. We are trying to have much of it done by our 45th Anniversary Celebration in October. This place has had an impact in the lives of many people and we want to rejoice in that and celebrate that. We are indebted to the pastors and people of our past that have enabled us to operate effectively here in hte present as well as reach forward into the future. Things are changing in our church because we want to be the most effective that we can be to reach the people of this culture. Pray with us that God would continue to work in our church and through our church. Many of you might be wondering how in the world Amy and I are doing in relation to Caden (our unborn baby who has anencephaly). We are doing okay. Amy is strong. She amazes me. Many have been touched by our story and we are thankful that God is using this trial in our life to draw people to Him. I have surrendered myself to the fact that this sucks! But God is good. I have also surrendered myself to the fact that I am scared. But that God is real and making His presence felt in my life. The doctors have basically said that Amy could go at any time between now and her due date. With us knowing this for a few months now, we still aren't ready for what could happen. We are praying and believing for a miracle if that is how God wants to be God. We are also struggling to be at peace with God taking Caden to be with Him if that is how God wants to be God. Please feel free to talk with us about our situation and do not be afraid that you will offend us. Talking about Caden and our situation actually helps us to cope. Understand, however, that I will be real. If my day has been lousy, I will tell you. If it is a good day, I will tell you that too. In any case, we appreciate your prayers. Something else that has helped is spending time focusing on people who have it worse off than we do (and there are many). It helps me to understand that we are not the only ones in need. It is hard to put myself in a situation to receive support and love from people. That is my job - I am the pastor! However, I need to do this in order to let others help to bear my burdens. At Junior High Camp last week, I realized that I was not doing a very good job of this, so I want to improve. They had me come up in front of the camp and told our story and then had pastors and youth pastors come up and pray for us. I felt very uncomfortable, but was very blessed! As a pastor, we are used to being on the "other side of the desk" and this time it was my turn to receive encouraging words and support. Thank you Lord for putting me at camp last week. Thank you for putting up with me and listening! Until next time... Ryan

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