Jeri Lund reminded us in worship last Sunday that I have been here in Warrensburg serving as your pastor for 5 years now. Can you believe it? I know I can’t. The time has really flown by for me and my family. Henry was barely a year old when we got here and now he is ready for 1st grade summer school. And Olivia is no longer that cute little toddler, she is moving up schools and starting summer at Martin Warren next week. My kids are sure growing up at rapid pace!
In a lot of ways our church has grown in these past five years as well. We have grown in our mission focus, as we have deepened our relationship with friends in Malawi as well as other mission partners. Who would have guessed we would be sending folks to Africa to forge relationships? 5 years ago the thought would have never crossed my mind.
Believe it or not, we are also growing in numbers. Look around the pews and take note of all the new faces. There are lots of families in our midst who weren’t here five years ago. In fact, this Pentecost Sunday June 4th, we will be adding another class of New Members. What an exciting time in the life of our church.
Other growth is happening as well, as we finally made the commitment to move the offices over into the church building. Things will take some getting used to but I know the secretaries are really enjoying their larger, better lit, and more welcoming accommodations. I too, simply love my new office! It is my favorite place in the church (apart from the sanctuary).
In many ways it has been a full five years, but I have to say I feel like we are just getting started. I am really eager to continue this journey into the future with you. I am confident we will make some good decisions about our facilities in the coming year. I know we will be a vital part of continuing to support the Food Center and whatever changes they make. I am eager to return to Africa in 2018 with some of you to continue to deepen our friendships there. And who knows what new members are waiting in the wings to join our community.
One of the biggest blessings God has given me has been my call to come to Warrensburg and serve as your pastor. I have so dearly enjoyed these five years and I look forward to many more together. You are a wonderful congregation and I thank God for the opportunity to serve and love you every day. Thank you for all you do in making me feel welcome. What a joy it is that we are together in Christ!