Over the past 2 ½ years, I have come to know and love you. It’s hard to believe that this is my last month at Emmanuel. Together, we’ve seen growth in attendance, membership, and giving. We’ve tackled building improvements and have seen God bring about transformation in our own lives and in the lives of those around us. All I can say after these 2 ½ years is this – God is good!
God was at work here at Emmanuel long before I arrived on the scene, and God will continue to be at work as I depart and Pastor Devin Smith arrives. Please welcome Devin, Brittany, and their two children into this church and into your lives. I know that pastoral transition is hard, but I also know that the Smiths are talented, loving, and devoted to God. Love them, and let them love you in return.
There is no limit to what God can bring about here – in this place and among these people. Remember, it’s not about you – it’s about loving God, loving others, and making disciples of Jesus Christ. For this we labor, for this we strive, for this we pray.
God has great plans for Emmanuel. And though God can certainly bring about the miraculous on his own, God tends to work and act through people who humbly submit to his will and passionately fulfill their callings.
Mordecai famously told Esther in Esther 4:14, “If you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?”
Brothers and sisters, God will bring about his good, pleasing, and perfect purposes with or without us. But by his grace, God invites us to be a part of the action. Remember who you are. Be faithful to the calling you’ve received.
May grace and peace abound in you and through you.
Until we meet again,