Pastor's Blog

Home Once Again Posted 10.21.2016

No, the bags are not all unpacked.  Yes, I took more pictures than necessary.  Walking in The Land was again, amazing.  Well, it was awfully warm (who knew 90’s were normal for early October?).  We just drank lots of water, used lots of sunscreen, and wore shorts for two weeks. If you ever go, remember that there are lots of hills and steps in Jerusalem, and well, everywhere in Israel.  It is not a trip for the faint of heart.


Just so we’re clear, there are no travel plans in my future.  None.  And for that I’m glad.  It’ll be good to just settle down at home for a while.  Oh wait, don’t we launch something special this morning?  I think we do.  Life’s never calm around here.  And for that I am grateful, actually.


I do want to express my deep appreciation to Paul Buttrey.  He’s had the unenviable task of sitting in my seat for the past couple of months.  The weeks have been a bit turbulent so his steady hand of wisdom and calm has been just what we’ve needed.  He may be relieved to be going back into “retirement,” but he has been a blessing to us, and especially to the staff.  He’ll be busier than ever this week as he can concentrate again on the other items on his plate.  But, thanks, Paul.  We love you and deeply appreciate your walk with God and your willingness to serve this body in one very difficult assignment.


And since I’m heading down this road, I need to acknowledge the rest of the staff, pastoral and office.  It’s been a crazy couple of months, with me in and out and Daring Faith always looming on the horizon.  They’ve been troopers about it all, and I am grateful for their patience and wisdom and faithfulness in these last few months.


And then there is the Daring Faith planning team.  They’ve been meeting every Monday since the end of August to put together this spiritual life campaign.  We are indebted to them all, for their focus on prayer, for their creativity, for their sacrifice of time and energy.  I really haven’t done very much.  They have picked up the slack and carried the burden for me.  We are blessed beyond measure for their servant leadership as we enter this series.


But you know, I am most grateful for the grace of the Savior. I’ve walked through The Land many times, but I think I have learned on this past trip more than ever (perhaps I am just a slow learner) how the entire story of God has been put together by the careful hand of God.  From His bringing Abraham into the Land, first to Shechem and then down to Beersheba – to His raising up Saul and Hezekiah and the prophets -- to His bringing Herod the Great to power at just the right time in history.


God is good at fitting together the puzzles of life to accomplish His goals.  So I am excited to see what God will do as we learn to trust that very God even more.  I’m back.  I’m expectant.  I’m excited to serve right here.  Right now.


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