This past weekend, our church said farewell to our senior pastor. He faithfully served our congregation for nearly ten years (although I started attending the church in 2014), and always taught God’s Word without compromise – month after month, and year after year. And in this day and age, such expository teaching is sadly becoming an increasingly rare thing. 😢
Anyway, as I reflect on the past seven days, I find that I am most thankful for the faithful servant the Lord called to shepherd our congregation for the past decade. Was he perfect? No. Did he ever claim to be? No, and I am grateful (remember, we are all works-in-progress in the hands of the Lord – not a single one of us is perfect!).
Yes, I can say that I’ve come to really appreciate our outgoing pastor’s enthusiasm, integrity, humility, and obedience before the Lord – admittedly, a rare combination of attributes in leaders of any kind these days.
Also, our new senior pastor starts this week; thankfully, he is a familiar and much-beloved face to our congregation, and we are grateful to the Lord for sending us another wonderful teacher and leader. However, I will not lie – saying farewell to our outgoing pastor was harder than I thought it would be. Accordingly, I know that I was not the only one with tears in my eyes during this past weekend’s services. Also, I imagine it must have been a profoundly bittersweet time for our departing pastor as well.
However, the tears were happy ones, as we know that our outgoing senior pastor is obeying God’s calling on his life to focus his ministry in a very specific way, and we celebrate his faithful obedience to the Lord’s call – even though I imagine that it must have been challenging for him (and his loved ones) to navigate such a significant season of life change. Indeed, times like these require an iron-clad faith in the Lord and in His wisdom – and I know that his trust in God is absolute (even though I think he might be just a little bit nervous on the inside!).
So this week, I am most thankful for the steadfast dedication of our outgoing senior pastor. Truly, he led us well, and I am grateful to God for his faithful service, ✝️