Sunday, December 16, 2007

Dear Liberty Church--We will miss you dearly

This morning at worship we announced to the Liberty congregation that we will be moving to McKinney, Texas, and taking a position at the High Pointe Church of Christ. Many, many tears were shed, both from us and from the congregation, as I attempted to put into words our incredible love and appreciation for this church. Before I even opened my mouth, I began to break down. The elders all rallied around me, standing there with me and praying for me and giving me their blessing.

Here is my letter to this church:

Dear Liberty family,

It has been a pleasure serving with you these nearly six years. During this time, the church here has experienced substantial growth in attendance, in baptisms, in contributions, and in new ministries. We have worked together, laughed together, and served alongside one another, and God has blessed this partnership. We have developed incredible, lifelong friendships. Our children have grown up at Liberty. We will cherish these relationships always.

We have decided to take a preaching/evangelist position at the High Pointe Church of Christ in McKinney, Texas, a suburb of Dallas. It is an 800-900 member congregation that wants to become missional and reach out to the community and is looking for leadership. They have a tremendous number of young families, and are looking for someone to connect with them. The area is expected to grow from 120,000 to 300,000 in the next 5+ years. And this is the church where my parents attend, which will allow our children to be closer to their grandparents. High Pointe approached us for this position, and when we visited them, we received an overwhelming reception. In short, this is a unique opportunity that we feel will allow us to be closer to family and have a great impact for the kingdom.

We will probably be leaving about mid-March, though this may be moved up if we conclude personal matters and it is agreeable to the church. In the meantime, we plan on spending cherished time with our friends here. We will also be concluding evangelistic Bible studies, doing follow-up with the Children's Ministry Outreach, and handing off ministry duties.

Thank you so much for all that you have done for me, for my family, for this church, and for the kingdom. The Liberty church is a wonderful church, and I am sure that God will send a great minister your way. We will pray for this, and we will pray that the great progress here will continue. This church has strong ministries and strong leaders, and should do well in the transition. We covet your prayers in beginning this challenging new work. We will stay in touch and forever be blessed by our partnership here together. God bless.
James and Becki

4 comments:

TWS said...

Congratulations, James!!! Look forward to having you and your wonderful family as partners in ministry here in the Metroplex.

James said...

Thanks, Tim! It will be great to be in the area, and we'll seek to build a great synergy together.

Hope to talk with you soon. Thanks for the comments. God bless.

Jburgess80 said...

I can only imagine how tough it is to leave a church home such as Liberty C of C. But we are deeply excited to have you joining the High Pointe family. Don't think of it as leaving a congregation but more as linking two congregations in love and evangelism for our God. Liberty, thank you for sharing James and his family with us in Texas. God bless the works at Liberty and continue to lift Him up.
-James B.

James said...

James,

Thanks for your thoughts. I like what you say about "linking two congregations in love and evangelism." That is probably how Paul, Barnabas and other leaders that we read about in Acts felt about all the congregations that they went to or helped establish.

And with the Internet today, it is easier to stay linked and connected. Our friends here will continue to follow things on my blog, and so will hear about works in McKinney from time to time.

While sad to leave in many ways, we are also excited about the work there. We'll look forward to working with people like you and reaching lost people in the Dallas area.