The View from the Other Side

Today my wife and I had a new experience. For the almost 43 years of our marriage, and for me for some 20 years prior, we had never joined a church without being on staff. Since we were urged into retirement some five months ago, we have been visiting churches, and praying that God would make clear where He wanted us to plug in. Our primary concern was and is that we don't feel that God is finished with us yet. We want to be somewhere where our gifts and abilities can be used for the kingdom. We have no interest at all in "sitting and soaking". After visiting several churches in our area, we found one that seemed to fit the criteria we had prayerfully set. Finally, I made an appointment with the pastor, and expressed to him our concerns and desires. He graciously answered my questions without putting any pressure on me to decide right away. We came away from that meeting with an agreement to pray for God's leadership.
Today as the service progressed, I became more convinced that this was the place for us. At invitation time, we talked briefly about it, and then went forward. We were graciously received, and had many people who were involved in various aspects of the church's ministries invite us to become a part of their group. All in all it was both gratifying and emotional. In one way it signified an ending to ministry as we have known it for many years. In another, it marked a new beginning. We still are not sure what the future holds, but now we know that it will involve our participation with a new family of believers. Once again I feel "connected" after five months of kind of flapping in the breeze. And, by the way, the view from the other side is not bad.


Anonymous said…
Bill, been there!! done that!!!
We stayed ten years in the church from which Rolla retired and enjoyed a change in ministry. Then we came here with no clue as to where we would go. Went to one suggested by our son for a month and realized it just was not a fit as much as we tried. Led to try another, First Baptist of New Braunfels! Went on Wednesday night and were met at the door of the cafeteria by three couples who just took us in. We have been here three years and have known from the start that this was the place for us. We are both busier than we would like!! But ministry opportunities and involvement that is most satisfying. We pray the same for you and Ray. Genevieve

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