Dear St. Lukers,
According to Ecclesiastes 3:1, “There’s a season for everything and a time for every matter under the heavens.” The verses that follow have become so much more real and relevant to Carol and me the past several weeks. Having to pack up our house and sort through everything, we can certainly relate to verse 6B, “a time for keeping and a time for throwing away…”
As we have prepared to move to a new home, church, and community, we’ve tried to prepare ourselves to leave behind our church family, friends, and community here. The only way we’ve made it through the emotional toll, countless decisions, and overflowing/overwhelming to-do list is because of your love, support, and prayers. You, St. Luke’s, are an incredibly loving, compassionate, and thoughtful congregation. Know that, we are forever grateful that God gave us the tremendous gift of being appointed here seven years ago. You will always be the first church that our boys came to know. Here, they’ve learned, played, and received the love of Christ through you. Thank you!
Also know that, we feel God’s presence in the midst of this mud-sitting transition. The same God that sent us and met us here is the same God that sends us to and will meet us in St. Pete. While God remains the same, I do not. I have grown tremendously and learned a lot, especially from the other pastors, the executive directors, and our lay leaders. I so appreciate you all for what you have taught me. Thank you!
As we approach my last Sunday with you, I’m trying to live out the words I tell our boys, “don’t be sad we’re leaving, be glad that we came.” It is so much easier said than done! Again, here’s where the Spirit of God comes to make things possible. We see it throughout Scripture and in our lives that God calls us to something and then enables and empowers us to pursue and live into it. We saw it in God’s Phone Booth and see it again now, in God’s Farmers’ Market. This Sunday, we remain in the Book of Galatians (5:16-25) and see that we’re called to love God and neighbor. Well, hear the Good News! We don’t (and can’t) do this on our own, but if we walk by the Spirit, the Holy Spirit will produce fruit of the Spirit from within us; fruit that starts with and flows from love.
Join the worship teams and me Sunday, as we bear the fruit of the Spirit… something we’re called to do in every season and in every time.
See you Sunday, because it’s not St. Luke’s without U,