Five years and eight months is just a short amount of time in the scheme of things. It flies by before your eyes, people grow older, children are born, and you carry out your day to day tasks not giving much thought to time. Looking back you wish you would have paid more attention, taken notes, remember all the people you met and the experiences you've had. Unfortunately it is just a handful of everyday experiences that you remember vividly. Five years and eight months is the amount of time I've had the pleasure of being in and serving in Lakeshore, MS at Lakeshore Baptist Church.
I wish I could remember each day, each experience, each person as vividly as it was when it was happening. I've had amazing experiences, learned more than I ever imagined, met more people that I could ever think of, and seen first hand what the Lord has done and continues to do in Lakeshore, MS. I've seen prayers answered moments after petitioning the Lord, prayers answered in very tangible, visible, and ways I could not imagine. I wish I could remember each instance, but I cannot. However, I give God the praise for each prayer answered.
Every memory I currently have I hope to carry with me the rest of my days, though I know with time memories fade. It will be impossible, however, to totally forget these years, the lessons I've learned, relationships formed, and watching the Lord work in mysterious ways.
By now you may have figured out where I am going with my little reminiscent rant. I've recently decided that I am leaving Lakeshore and moving closer to my family in Wisconsin. I currently don't have all the details worked out, however I know it will be in the late April or May time frame. I will live with my sister and her family for a time until I can find a job and a place to live. I am excited for this next step in life and look forward to the possibilities and ministry opportunities.
This whole experience is bittersweet. While I am very excited for what's to come it is very difficult for me to think about leaving a place that I love. A place for nearly six years where I have poured out my life, served, and built relationships. I recently broke this news to my pastor here in Lakeshore and that has been the most difficult part of this whole deal yet. I anticipate as the departure date draws nearer it will get more difficult. But I rejoice in the opportunities that I have had here in Lakeshore. It has been an experience that has been unlike any other I've ever had.
To my church....You have become family to me and I will miss you greatly, but I'm only 1100 miles away and I'm sure I'll visit as often as I am able (and any of you are more than welcome to visit me anytime!). It is my commitment to this church that I will pray for you and this community. It is my desire to see the Lord save people in Hancock county and that He'd grow Lakeshore Baptist Church. I'm very encouraged to see the Lord working in the lives of many, saving souls, and individuals striving to become more spiritually mature. I have many fond memories with people in our congregation and am grateful many of you have adopted me into your families. I love y’all.
To my financial and prayer supporters...I am immensely grateful for your support over the years. I could have not continued serving in Lakeshore without the finances and the prayers that kept me going. My service to the Lord, to his people and the lost is not over. I look forward to eventually serving in different ways at a church in Wisconsin and ministering to the lost in my new community.
To other volunteers...I am amazed at the number of people I've met (thousands of people from over 600 different churches). You're faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and servant's heart encouraged me in numerous and immeasurable ways. I may not remember every individual person, but I am grateful for you. Continue to serve, whether it be in Lakeshore, your home town, or wherever the Lord leads you!
I look forward to this new adventure and covet your prayers as I begin making a plan and preparing for this move.
I've been blessed far beyond what I deserve.