Sunday, August 06, 2006

Newsletter Article

It is hard for me to believe that it has already been 3 weeks that I have been gone. Time goes by so fast. The first week really is just one of letting go and unwinding, by the time we got to the Maui, I was really feeling good. The last week has been filled with much angst as I try to determine if I should still go to Israel. To be honest — I am getting pushed both ways.

But it really sunk in to me that I was gone, when I was talking with Pastor Mark at Dyer UMC and he mentioned to me that he had presided over Betty Foltz’s funeral. I hadn’t even known she had died. When I asked Nancy about it she said that she figured if I wanted to know things like that I would have to ask. That was hard. Because I will pretty much stay in the dark, unless I again, find out in a crazy sort of way.

What is really been the hardest part is being in the area, yet not being in communication with YOU, my friends. I miss the relationships, the laughter and the tears. I miss the men’s bible study, I miss the staff, I miss each of you on Sunday mornings. But, that is part of the process.

I am working on "Wrestling With God". Starting in a few days, I will be asking some questions on my blog that will invite you to respond. I have had to add a "word recognition" protocol, because I was starting to get a lot of spam. Sorry about that. I also may require that you use your name. Be sure if you comment to let me know who you are!

A small portion of my Hawaii pictures are up on the web. I took close to 2,000 pictures and have only a small few up for you to see. I am working with the others to do something with them.

Until I leave for Israel, I probably will not do a lot of changes to the website. I will, however, try to keep up with my blog on a daily or every other day routine.

So, Steve, what is the deal with Israel?

Boy, that is such a tough question to answer right now. I have talked with many, many people — trying to get an honest appraisal of the situation. What I have come up with is:
  • I will probably never have an opportunity like this again to go and spend a month in Israel in solitude.
  • The situation is bad in the north right now, but even as I write, the UN is starting to make cease-fire, if not peace overtures.
  • The southern part of the country — which includes Jerusalem, is calm and safe. In talking with someone in Israel right now, their comment was: "you would never know what was going on up north by the things happening in Jerusalem."
  • I have found somebody who can help me spend part of my time in Jordan (if that is what I desire)

Once I decide not to go, I can’t change my mind. By continuing the plans to go — I will still have the option to bail at a later date if that need arises.

So, as of this moment (Sunday, August 5th) I am still planning on going. Keep me in your prayers, that I can make the best possible decision when the time comes.

Thanks to everyone who has looked at the websites. I appreciate your comments. If you haven’t yet look the address for my website is: www.smconger.com. The address for my blog is www.smconger.blogspot.com.



8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Steve, I am praying for you to find the right decision about Israel. Wouldn't do any good to give you my opinion, but having been there before under a similar, but I believe, less threatening situaion, I'll just trust God to help you make the right choice for you and your family. Miss you, but know you're doing God's work as you search for what you need right now.
Diane

Anonymous said...

Will keep you in prayer during your entire sabbatical including your Israel decision.
Pat O'Brien

Anonymous said...

Hi

Anonymous said...

hi

Anonymous said...

b,i,a
Hi

Anonymous said...

hi

Anonymous said...

Greetings From The Vis House!

I know what it is to have feelings of angst - knowing the Conger family is nearby - but not being able to say "hello" on Sunday! This is really the hardest part of ypur sabbatical (the social part of your sabbatical.

Regarding your trip to Israel, I honestly believe you should make a "go" of it, as long as it is safe. You planned this a long time and it is part of your sabbatical. Presently, it is safe in the southern part of Israel. You probably won't be able to take pictures of Mt. Camel - but that is fine - your safety is more important.

Glad to hear you had a great time at the Buffett Concert and are getting in some golf and relaxation.

Your added pictures are great (especially when you include them in your blogs. I see you got some parasailing in - looks like a lot of fun! Love your added commengs by the pictures! Hope Lindsey got on the soccer team.

AGAIN - I'm sure you and God will make the right decision on Israel.

Love
M.Vis

Anonymous said...

Steve - Please disregard all the faux pas I made on the comments. My computer mentioned HTML tags and this is where I was confused. Disregard the E-Mail I sent you about this. As you can see I am a neophyte at this game.

M.Vis