A Personal Pastoral Word
Hard as it is for me to believe, two years ago this month I stepped from a Penske truck into the blazing inferno that was the Central Valley. It’s hard to believe because so much has changed for us personally. For the first time in her life, Cathy wasn’t married to a full time student and for the first in mine I was doing what I’d been training 8½ years for. We had only Silas, and he was a mere 10 months old. We had a few fledgling friendships and no idea what life would be like here.
Since then, we have not only adjusted to but have fully enjoyed the plans God has for us here. It has been consistent delight to do the work of the ministry, with all the attending ups and downs. God added Raina to our little quiver, and friendships began to develop and deepen.
At the same time, so much has changed for us as a church. When we got here our church was still just a Bible study, the office was an empty shell, our attendance was half what it is now, and the unknowns were far greater than the knowns.
In these few and fast months, I have repeatedly seen God do more than I could ask or think. He’s repeatedly shaped and molded me, sometimes in the painful realization of my failures and weaknesses but always to the praise of His grace at work. He’s shown His grace in your lives, encouraging us with your consistent thirst for His Word, love for His people, and gracious flexibility. Our hearts are filled to overflowing with God’s gracious providence. These two years have been so much more than we could have ever deserved or expected in our wildest dreams. So at this two-year mark, we praise the God of grace even as we are thankful in every treasured memory we have of you all. Soli Deo gloria.