Woodland Church honored all of our pastors yesterday and celebrated our 20th year pastoring this wonderful congregation. When the story of Woodland is written it will be simply “Look What God has Done!” As a congregation we are deeply blessed by a rich sense of the presence and blessings of God. We have received the gift of a vision of what God has called us to be and do that is anchored solidly in the Bible.
Becky and I love and have been loved in so many tangible ways by this church and community. When I look at the congregation, there are people that I see, who were born again in this community of faith. I’ve watched them grow in Christ, serve others in the name of Jesus, discover ministry that God has shaped them for, go to foreign fields, and others who have answered God’s call to full time ministry.
Our community has always been kind and welcoming to us. It is gratifying and humbling to be afforded the opportunity to serve others who are not part of the Woodland Family. When I’m asked about living here, it is always a joy to share our experience.
Today I had lunch with a young man who committed his life to Christ this past Easter. I listened intently as he shared with me part of his story. When I got in my car after lunch, I sat with amazement at what God has done in so many people’s lives. It’s a privilege to listen and be a witness of the ongoing story of God’s amazing grace. I never cease to be in wonder at what God has done.
On Eisenhower Parkway in Macon, Georgia 21 years ago, I asked the Lord that when we returned to the pastorate that he would give our family to a congregation that would love my family. People of faith that my children could respect and see the fruit of the Holy Spirit in their lives. I wanted our sons and daughter to remember their childhood and teenage years with love and appreciation for Christ’s Church. God abundantly answered that prayer.
For twenty years we have been blessed with a leadership team of pastors, deacons, small group leaders, and volunteers that I love and count as friends. As a local body of believers we are fortunate to have so many capable and godly leaders among us. We are blessed with an amazing number of people who volunteer hours and hours to serve in various ways in our community.
Thank you to our board who took time to prayerfully plan a wonderful month of expressing love and appreciation to each of the pastors at Woodland. I am so thankful to serve our Lord Jesus Christ with you.
Thank you to each of our pastors for the labor of love and leadership that you provide at Woodland in your ministry. Each day you faithfully administer and lead the way in our vision of “persuading people to become passionate followers of Christ!” It’s an honor to be “yokefellows” with you.
Thank you to the volunteers who work daily and all who give in some way for Woodland to serve Christ every day. You are the X factor of this congregation.
I have to express my love and gratitude to my beautiful wife. You are indeed the picture of loveliness within and without. You are my most trusted friend and counselor. You are the one who prays for me more than anyone else. You have enriched me with love, understanding, and faith. You have opened our home to many welcoming them in God’s love. Our children adore and bless you. Becky, I love you and the life we share together.
I am so grateful for the call of God to pastor Woodland Church and become a part of the community we have called home for almost 21 years now! As Garrett Sexton said, in the video tribute yesterday, “I’m looking forward to what God has for us in the future.”
Peace and love!