We have been all over the place this Summer as we transition from Houston to Denton. We have spent the past week in Denton so Kristen could help with her father and I could connect with friends and leaders. My father-in-law improves everyday, and it is a blessing to see his sense of humor returning. He will be in a rehab hospital for at least another three weeks. Thank you for your faithful prayers.
It has been a joy to spend time with Jeff Williams who is one of my early mentors and has faithfully served Denton as pastor of First Baptist Church for over 15 years. I was blessed to hang with Jeff Weisner the college pastor at Denton Bible Church and hear about his plans to go through the residency program at Capitol Hill Baptist. He is leaving as we are arriving. I also had some productive and encouraging meetings with some of the pastors at Christ Community Church. It has been a special joy to reconnect with the Crenshaws who have already expressed interest in the new church. They are close friends who were in our church in Austin. I had the honor of baptizing Andy and marrying he and Jillian! It has also been fun to spend time with many other old friends this week.
Loving friendship has been refreshing to the soul recently. Jesus was described in Luke 7:34 as a “friend of tax collectors and sinners.” He was rebuked for this friendship in Luke 15 and responds with the Parable of the Prodigal Son. The unearned love of the Father in that parable is the love we feel from our Heavenly Father right now. We have been so blessed by His friendship, as well as the loving friendships he has provided us in Houston and Denton. We know there will be highs and lows when starting a new church, but the unmerited love of the Father refreshes our souls and moves us forward.
We officially move to Denton on July 22nd. I am working hard to develop our initial strategy. In order to begin laying out our plans I will launch an email newsletter by the middle of August. We need people committed to praying for us and this newsletter is how we can get the word out about our prayer needs. If you want to be included on the newsletter please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.