3 years ago today my family and I, including my dad and inlaws, made our way across most of Ontario, from the west tot he east, and began to plant roots in a new community. We drove our rented Thrifty cube van, and a few cars for nearly 6.5 hours, through valley's, over hills, around curves that seemed to never end, and got to experience some amazing country side. We found our way to a beautiful little town called Smiths Falls.
Tomorrow will mark the day that we took possession of our house, the first house we have a mortgage on, hooray for not renting. It was the second house we looked at on our tour of homes that were for sale in February 2008, it was the only one that we really liked. It also had 2 others bids on it, which we now have found out, both bids were from couples in our church. The deciding factor for ours being the winning bid? Our closing date was only 4 weeks from the day we made our bid, the day we were to start in Smiths Falls at our wonderful church.
As we reflect on the process of buying this house, we see God in so many areas. The neighborhood we are in, the price of the house, the fact it was on the market for a few months without selling, even down to the agent that showed us around. Bet he was happy, he said in all his years of selling only one other time did he sell a house the day he showed the house.
Friday will mark 3 years since my first day in office, April 1st. Imagine if that was some elaborate April fools joke, getting a family to move up here for April one, then at noon yell out April Fools, we didn't actually hire you. Thankfully God's sense of humor isn't like that and either was our churches.
I met some inspiring and very kind people that first day in office as they came to get a sneak peak at the new blood who had taken up residence. Each one sharing words of life and love as they shook my hand and passed through my office, which was being rearranged and stocked full of books and media.
April 6th will mark 3 years since my first Sunday at Bethel. In this time I have learned numerous leadership and life lessons. I have been taught many God values and preaching stand points. I have developed my own style of ministry, and I have planted myself into a community that desires change and needs hope and love. April 6th is a special day for my family and I, it was the day we began this journey with the people of Smiths Falls and our new family at Bethel. It is also the day I shared what I believe was an inspired message about our church and town. I want to reflect on that message briefly, travel back with me 3 years, lets see what God has done in our lives since that day.
Who am I? We looked at my past, how I was brought up, the things I had experienced over the years. I shared my heart for the people of Bethel and the community I now live in. I expressed how I had a sense that this was home, not just a post that I had been called to for a few years, but home. We walked through my love for spreading hope and joy to others through kindness, regardless of how that takes form. And I concluded with a section called God of this city.
Loosely based on the Chris Tomlin song, complete with video presentation revolving around photos of our town. I shared about the move of God in this great town that we need to anticipate, that the spirit of revival would flow through our streets and the people would see that the heart of God was for their lives to be covered by his grace and love.
What I have learned is that God wants to do a mighty work in this town, I know we hear it a lot, but he really genuinely does want to accomplish great things. I have dreams and hopes for my life and those around me. So does God. My hope is that I can see His dreams take form in this town, see his hand move in a powerful way, and that I can be a part of what he does here.
3 years is not a long time, only a small mark on the line that is my life, but God is doing some great things, and I love the fact that he isn't done with me yet.
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