The following are some key points and thoughts that led to me stepping down as the pastor of New Life Church in Dalzell. I’ve attempted to make these thoughts as succinct as possible.
I’ve tried to build the ministry God has called me to on transparency. Who has time for anything else? I pray this post is just that. Transparent. Real. Succinct.
The following are areas that we prayed through in this process.
We had a building, but not a church.
When I got to New Life that wasn’t necessarily the case. We had a few families, however over time and for various reasons one-by-one those families moved on.
After all the church is about God’s people, not a building. The church is to be structured with its people looking toward Christ, the head of the local church.
Being good stewards.
I believe that we are to be good stewards of what God has given us — both as the church and individually. That includes our time, money, resources and energy/efforts. This was a key factor in our decision making.
While our building was paid for, there were still monthly monetary needs. A few people + a little tithe = not a long way.
Most people don’t like to think of the church as a business, but it takes money and good stewardship to minister to those in the church and the surrounding community.
Help came from the least likeliest of places.
There was also a shift in my philosophy of ministry. When there were just a few of us at New Life help came from the least likeliest of places. Where was that? Across the street from house — our neighbors.
For the sake of time I will not go into how God moved and brought them into our church family, but He did. We’re thankful and have enjoyed our time getting to know them more and growing spiritually as families.
We’re called to reach those around us.
Who did Jesus minister to? Those that were around Him!
We are called to reach those that He places in our path. That shift I spoke of a moment ago came as our neighbors joined us. Why were two families driving clear to the other side of the county when we’re called to minister to those around us.
Good stewardship = Blessings for others
New Life Church and its assets weren’t mine before going there, they’re His. You and I are just managing what He has given us, temporarily. All of these points I’ve mentioned lead us to where we find ourselves: Getting of the way so that others might be blessed.
As I’ve mentioned, we had a building and no church. There was a church in our association that had church, but no building. They had been praying for years that God would open a door. In processing everything I was seeing and experiencing these last few months, I had to ask myself, “Why should we stay in Dalzell and struggle to reach a community we are not a part of when there is another group that could better use these resources?” When I talked that over with God, I knew the choice I had to make. Let go. Let God!
Onward & Upward!
In closing, as my buddy Jim Johnson would say, “Onward & Upward!”
As we move forward the Moore family is excited about what God holds in store for our family and the ministry that He has called us to. We look forward to announcing our plans in the coming days.
I think we all should remember, some chapters are longer than others. This chapter at New Life was definitely a training ground, preparing us for a future assignment(s). I wouldn’t change our decision to go there, the lives we had the chance to be a part of and the stretching — physically, mentally and spiritually — that has taken place these last few months.
Again, we look forward to what God has in store for our family in the coming days, months and years.
To God be the glory!
A man for whom Christ died,