January 31 marked the final day of a fourteen year season of my life and a twenty-six year era. I have been a part of North Way Christian Community for over eighty percent of my life. I made lasting friendships, grew strong roots of faith, developed character in leadership, and started my family there. North Way was the first place I ever had a paying job, and a majority of my jobs since that point have been there.
It was on a retreat with the student ministry that I felt a call into ministry. I went on four mission trips to Costa Rica, Mexico, and Alaska as a part of the high school ministry. After my first year at Geneva College, I cam back to North Way to intern with Kidz and Student Ministry, and eventually found myself working full-time in the Worship Production department.
Looking back, there were so many people who poured out their lives in order to make an impact on mine. They laid a firm foundation of Scripture for my faith in Jesus Christ in elementary school. They taught me what being a Christian meant in middle school and then instilled an understanding of servant leadership in high school. They didn’t turn their backs on me when I made major mistakes, but came along side to help me up. They invested in my life through discipleship, mentoring relationships, and the emerging leader program. Who and where I am today is largely because of the impact that North Way played in my life.
I could have made the safe decision and continued my journey at North Way in the production world. I was the go-to person for church production for more churches than just my own. There was still room to grow, but I knew in my heart that there was a different place for me. After being turned down for a number of positions where I could pursue pastoral ministry, I was presented an opportunity to step out of the boat of North Way – a true walk-on-water kind of choice was in front of me.
This month I began the journey of church planting with CityReach Network. It is a path that many have blazed before me, yet still an adventure into the unknown. I have so much to learn and skills to hone, but I am excited to be a part of where The Spirit is leading.
As I build the core team, meet with neighborhoods, raise funds, and look for the right location, would you consider joining me in prayer? Pray that passionate people join my team. Pray that the right community welcomes me and a lasting partnership is formed. Pray for the location that will be filled with people seeking the face of God.
I cannot fully express how excited I am to be on this journey. I will be preaching for the first time this coming Friday at CityReach Pittsburgh and would love to see you there.