In our 2019 year-end update, I pointed out how God had worked to raise up leaders in each area of our ministry in Buffalo, including Elders, Home Church, College Ministry and Merge Urban Youth.
I read a book in my early training called “Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Ours?” by Roland Allen. He brought up the concept of practicing absence. He pointed out how Paul would equip and release the people of God to do the work of Christ, and then trust God to work through them to lead the ministry in his absence.
As I reflected on this, I sensed God (like a small whisper) bringing the thought that establishing leaders in Buffalo meant KJ and I stepping away from our roles at some point. I discussed this with our Board and after much prayer and discussion, the Board supported us transitioning and relocating at the end of 2020.
As Allen pointed out in his book, Paul stayed involved in the churches after he was gone. We will continue to consult, coach, and train as needed. While we don’t yet know our other future ministry roles, this is one that we look forward to!
We have always found God to have awesome ministry opportunities for us. Our plan is to transition at the end of 2020, followed by a sabbatical for a few months to pray, reflect, and hear from God about next steps. While our specific roles in future ministry are still vague…Columbus, Ohio, seems to be the likely place to return to (at least initially) and we are excited to go back!
Our ministry experiences give us the confidence that God will continue to use us. Our roles are changing but our vision to build the Kingdom of God by taking the good news to all people and make disciples is the same. Many of our experiences have prepared us for “such a time as this” as we see the current challenges our society is facing.
We gave our lives to Him for His purpose. We are so excited to see what God has planned for the next phase of our lives and ministry! We invite you to pray with us for God’s wisdom for next steps and for the leaders in Buffalo.
For those who have also supported us financially over the years, we invite you to continue to partner with us into our next phase of ministry in 2021. We will continue to update you as we transition, and we are so very grateful for your friendship and support!