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Our Journey to E91: June 18

Laura and I are in Lexington visiting her parents for a couple of days while our kids are at church camp. I went for a jog this morning in a nearby park, and I noticed a sign that read, "Caution: This Area May Flood Without Warning." Rather odd, I thought. And it made me pick up my pace a little bit. After all, if a flood could come without warning, and Park Management didn't seem fit to have any life-vests nearby, I wanted to move to higher ground! 

As I was running back to my in-laws' house, I thought about how so many "floods" in life come without warning: loss of job, cancer, heart attacks, car accidents, and other such unpleasantries of life. But there are also good things that flood our lives without warning: finding love, "surprised by joy" (to use C. S. Lewis's phrase), the laughter of a young child, and the peace and power of God's Spirit. 

We can plan, manage, and do our best to control our life circumstances. We can eat right, exercise, get plenty of rest at night, and still get hit by a car. No matter how hard we try, we can't always avoid the bad, and we can't always usher in the good. Sometimes life just happens without warning.

In church life, we can do our best to plan and manage solid, Christ-centered ministries, outreach services, and worship gatherings, and sometimes growth happens, and sometimes it doesn't. We can't control the Holy Spirit. Perhaps the best thing that could happen as we begin this new chapter at E91 together is to see warning signs posted around the church campus that say, "Caution: This Area May Flood Without Warning." May we be the kind of church where God's Spirit floods us with His love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Gal. 5:22-23). And when people in our community see what God is doing, may they be overwhelmed with the flood of His love and truth, even it comes to them without warning. 

Our Journey to E91

Over the next month, I'll be writing updates and having them posted on Facebook and through the E91 weekly E-bulletin. I hope this helps keep everyone informed of where we are in the transition, and I hope it helps you get to know my heart a little better as we begin this new season together!


As Laura, the kids and I go through this transition, we are amazed at how God has guided and directed us every step of the way. Saying "goodbye" to our Owensboro Christian Church family and friends has been difficult, and, for those of you who have "been there, done that," all the details of making a move are extremely tedious. But every time I find myself worrying, God comes through. 


We were worried about whether or not our house would sell, and it sold in a day. We were worried about finding a house in the Indy area, but we found one in two days. I get anxious over the loan application process for a mortgage, and God leads us through. And then there are the smaller details of cancelling utilities, signing up for new utilities, making sure our homeowner's insurance is set up, going through all the banking changes and the address changes. But, again, God has seen us through. 


So why do I worry? One would think that preachers should be "worry-free," because we're supposed to be "spiritual." I've preached many times on the words of Jesus, "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear.  Is not life more important than food and the body more important than clothes?" (Matthew 6:25)  But even though Jesus tells us, "Do not worry" (Matthew 6:31), I find myself doing just that.  This reminds me that our walk with Christ is a life-long process. In one sense we have arrived, but in another sense, we're still arriving. My hope and prayer for you is that in those times you are facing major transitions, and you're giving in to worry, know that the Lord is strong and mighty. He is faithful and true. He is powerful and glorious. And He is the gentle Shepherd who guides our every step.


As He leads Laura, our kids and me, we know He is leading you as well. The Lord is preparing us for E91, and He's preparing E91 for whatever His plans are for this new and exciting chapter. We're just grateful He has called us to share it together!