The Final Month: Day Twenty-Two

Posted: July 22, 2012 in The Final Month

In my sleep-deprived stupor last night I asked you to continue praying that God would increase my support, and I’m happy to let you know that He has heard and granted this request! My home church in Virginia has graciously joined my support network. If you knew anything about my childhood at all, you would know what a move of God this was- haha! We were also blessed to be given a financial gift tonight by members of my church to help us in our move, and we were treated to a fantastic lunch and afternoon of fellowship by an awesome couple here in town.

In all it was a good day, though the fun times are rapidly becoming bittersweet. As of today, we can say “we’re moving next week.” It has an odd ring to it- the last two months have screamed by. As the house looks different every day, it’s sinking in that we’re leaving. Some days it catches me off guard. Other days it’s like “woah…I’m a Virginia-bound church planter.” It was sad, though, standing before my students tonight and preaching my last sermon. Yes, there’s still a full week before we leave, but tonight was my last sermon. It’s been a wonderful 38 months. Thank you, REALife Students, for allowing me to grow as a preacher and teacher in my ministry to you. Just remember- King Saul did not become the Apostle Paul!!

When I was in Iraq I learned very quickly how to compartmentalize my emotions and just deal with life. Not deal with the emotions, mind you…but to “suck it up and drive on.” I think that this is going to be how I deal with saying goodbye. It doesn’t take a long time of talking to me to see the excitement and anticipation that fills me over this transition, but in a very real way leaving my students and church family is going to be heartbreaking. So I’m able to ignore the elephant in the corner until next Sunday. Well, that’s the idea, lol. But it’s not so easy for Sarai. She’s much more of a “feeler” than I am, and so she’s already experiencing the duress that comes with saying goodbye. Pray for our emotional strength this last week, but especially for hers.

I don’t think I’ve hit on the idea yet (probably because I’m way too long-winded when I get on this subject), but this month has really allowed me to gain a new appreciation for the things that God does for us, not only individually but also as a body. I’ve come to see in a better light what a blessing it is to be a part of the Church (big “C”), to be able to experience life with those who are joined in fellowship together as a local church. In fact, this was one of the ways in which we knew God was leading us to Crozet. Within the nucleus of Life Journey Church is such a sense of community, an underlying love between these people whom God has saved and brought together. It felt like home for us. It’s…amazing. It’s so hard to put into words the emotion that’s evoked in thinking about this.

I’ve also experienced this with my current church, and I experienced it before coming to Indiana. It’s that Christ-centered, burden-sharing, life-linking, soul-warming connection that we as Christians have with each other. It’s the way by which the Holy Spirit draws us together, making us want to share our lives and belongings, to pray for each other, even dying for each other if needed, and this bond takes almost no time to form. From a sociological viewpoint, it’s the oddest thing ever. There is a reason that the Bible refers to us as brothers and sisters together in Christ. There’s a reason that Jesus said we would be recognizable as Christ-followers on the basis of our love for each other. We’re here to serve as the body of Christ, and when we as the church are living as we’ve been called to, the world around us will truly see Jesus. How much more amazing is that, rather than God simply saving us and then doing nothing through us!

So today was a day of reflection. It was a day of thinking about how wonderful it is to be the Church, how amazingly terrifying and humbling it is to be called by God to partner with Walt Davis (and whomever else God draws to LJC to serve as an elder) and plant a church, this community of Christ-followers who are eager to spread the fame of God among those around us. If time and energy allows, tomorrow I will write a bit more on the vision and strategy of Life Journey Church. If the anticipation is too much, check us out on the web at Please also continue to pray for us to get everything done that we need to, as well as for our regular needs.

If you’re new to the blog, be sure to catch up on all of the posts from this final month!

  1. […] kid you not- I feel like I’m still writing on last night’s entry. Today was without a doubt the fastest and busiest day of this month. It was a good day, though, as […]

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