The above photo came from a presentation that I gave at our Local Church Conference today. For those of you who are local, you know that we resigned from Parkway Wesleyan Church back in February. The weeks since then have been filled with sending out resumes and looking for where God would lead us next. At this moment we still don’t have that answer.
To say that this morning wasn’t emotional for me would be an understatement. I could feel the emotions welling up inside of me, especially know this would be the last report I would give to the local congregation at Parkway. Yes, I will continue to lead worship until July or whenever we move, which ever comes first. But today’s report encapsulated six years of ministry at Parkway. It was cool to relive the great things that have happened since our arrival. (One of the things that I need to do in the next several weeks is to write the Parkway chapter of my ministry journal. When I do that I will link to the first seven chapters.) At the end of the presentation, I finished with the photo that I have at the top. Philippians 3:13-14 has always been a favorite of mine, but since I started running, I understand it more. The picture was taken just shy of the finish line at the Richmond Marathon in November of 2013. I had trained my heart out and you can see that in my frame because there is no fat on that body. You can see me looking up. What am I looking up at? I am looking at the finish line – 26.2 miles of running – 4 hours and 20 minutes of my very best effort – even though thought of that this evening gives me shivers. It was a lifetime achievement – something I once thought impossible. But just beyond lies the finish line. Today we are at that point in our ministry at Parkway. We have served here 6 years – six wonderful years – I am so thankful for God’s beautiful, amazing, justifying, sanctifying, keeping, sustaining grace. And yet tonight – the finish line is in sight – tonight we press on toward the goal for which God has called us. Pam and I would covet your continued prayers as we determine where God would have us serve next.
I should mention that Pam and I did go on an interview this past week. We traveled up to the New York shores of Lake Ontario. It was cool to get my feet in one of the Great Lakes. We will keep you up to date as we follow the Lord’s leading.
After a little run yesterday, most of the morning and afternoon was spent organizing. It really is amazing how much stuff you can accumulate in six years – so we spent quite a bit of time going through stuff – figuring out what we wanted to keep and what we wanted to give away.
Like I said, this morning was emotional and the songs affected me more than I thought they would – during practice, I could barely contain myself and while we sang them during worship, I sang like I had never sung before. It was just me and my guitar, Anna on flute, and our wonderful keyboardist Ethelyn leading today. The congregation sounded great and it was great fun to lead in worship. We had a special guest from World Hope International and learned more about how this great organization is being the hands and feet of Jesus and sharing the gospel.
Last night we had a little pastor’s couples’ get together. The three local Wesleyan pastoral couples gathered for dinner – it was great. I will miss them greatly.
So this week we get ready for our National Day of Prayer service that we do on Wednesday evening and then this Saturday it’s time for another race. This time to benefit Comfort Care Women’s Health. Compared to last Saturday’s race, this one is short – it’s just a 5K. That’s about it and we will see you next Sunday night! Seize the Day!