When we moved to FL, as my son was entering 7th grade, what I was looking for in a church was a strong youth ministry. Our small church in NJ did not have a youth pastor at the time. I wanted a place where my son could serve the Lord. I’ve always tried to lead him by example…that we’re saved to serve the Lord. It was top on my list!!
We also knew how important it would be for us to be a hop-skip-and a-jump from all our church activities and friends in the Lord!! After the first Sunday and Wednesday night, we knew where the Lord wanted us! We met the youth pastor’s wife as soon as we walked in the front door, and now that I know her and the youth pastor so well, I know why the first thing she said when she saw my son was, “Welcome! I’m the youth pastor’s wife!” They have such a heart for teens…it’s like radar! I feel the Lord told her to sit there and wait for us to come in!!
Then we walked up to Kid’s Church, and the moment we met the children’s pastor, saw the beautifully decorated room, and met all the workers…we were hooked! I remember saying to her, “If you ever need any help here, let me know!” It was our first day, but, we needed no time to get used to everyone and everything…there was no holding back, we loved it! This was what we had been praying for, and the Lord showed me He would “part the seas” of hassles and obstacles along the way to find it–our new home church!! Here was where we could bloom where He planted us!!
The youth and children’s pastors are still such a blessing to us, my son is still in Kids Church…now as a teacher. He still goes to youth group…now as a leader. I would need pages to express the impact that their love of Christ, and their love of people has meant to us! Both, such powerful ministries.
Then, we came back on Wednesday night, and met the leaders in Royal Rangers! Again, fun, welcoming, and filled with the Spirit of God. The Lord definitely led us here!!
So pastors, I want to say, “THANK YOU!!” to you for the years before we came, the years when you poured God’s love and Spirit into this congregation, when you laughed with them and cried with them. When you constantly prayed to Our God about them and their concerns. When you taught them that the Joy of the Lord could be theirs, and that loving and serving God is not drudgery…it’s Joyous!! When you taught them to reach out to people, as soon as they walk in the door of our church. Or, when they meet them at school, work, or in the marketplace. And to reach around the world with their giving.
Thank you for being steadfast in the Lord, (I admit, sometimes I don’t know how you do it!). I know God holds you up because of your strong faith and reliance on Him. You’ve taught us these lessons by your words, and by your lifestyle…a life of Praise! I’m thankful that the Lord gave us pastors that are willing to be accountable for our spiritual well-being. I know you’re both depending on God and His wisdom in everything you do, and in every decision you make for our church!!
Thank you for sharing the visions and dreams the Lord speaks into your hearts. We will believe and agree with you, that we will see them come to pass! We’re blessed to be placed here by God! We love you and honor you…In Jesus Name!!
Praise God! This is just what I was looking for in a church!