This past Sunday after church Ivy sat with my dad in front of the television watching the Kansas City Chiefs. My dad was explaining that we root for the team in red, but Ivy was adamant that we really root for the team in blue (which was the Texans). When the Chiefs scored dad shouted, “Go Chiefs”, but Ivy shouted “Go Royals”.
My family was together because that morning we had been invited to a church in view of a call. They voted nearly unanimously to make me their pastor (it seems I still have one person to win over!). While our calling is joy for my family, it is also sadness as we part with so many friends here. We have loved our church in Augusta and it has been a great experience of growing in joy and challenges. We arrived here with Ivy at three months and watched her grow to almost five. During our time here little Phoebe was born – caught by the loving hands of Dr. Williams. This is a place we love.
It is also a place that provided me with many ministry opportunities. I was given the chance to preach and extend my gifts in the contemporary service. During these times, I felt the Spirit begin to stir in our hearts and felt that we were being called out of student ministry and into the role of pastor.
We have been called to Chandler Baptist Church, which is located near Liberty, MO (It was actually located in Chandler, MO, but the town eventually disappeared while the church continued to grow – there is a sermon illustration!). The church is about 25 miles from my folks and four hours from Megan’s hometown near Tulsa, OK.
Over the coming weeks we will be saying many goodbyes and my last day in the office will be Wednesday, November 3rd. We love you very much. But of course this is not the end. We so often root and cheer for our church, but in reality we all serve under the banner of Christ. As He calls me away, He has called you to continue to press forward and even now He is preparing a person to step into my place.
Admittedly, even God may struggle to find someone to speak on toenails or someone who will ask you to sit when you should be standing… We love you and will miss you. Even more importantly we thank you for our time here – making this a place to call home, a place to call our church.