The Church

I remember when I returned from South Africa in November of 2004, I was not too thrilled about returning to the American church. I felt like I had experienced true worship in so many of the African churches I attended. I didn't want to return to surface-level, get in-get out mentalities. I realize now that my viewpoint then was very biased and some of my gut reactions were based on what's called 'reverse culture shock'. When Daniel and I met in 2006, I was still struggling in a BIG way with the American church, and I had no desire to serve on staff in said church. Obviously, God had other plans! :) As I got to know and fall in love with Daniel, I couldn't help but learn about his passion for the church. There is no doubt in my mind he was created to shepherd God's people. He LOVES the church and he wants to do everything possible to protect it, challenge it, and encourage it. Throughout our time of dating and engagement, as I heard him talk about the importance of the church, my heart and mind began to slowly (and I do mean slowly!) change. I had been hurt by some churches in the past, and I was having a hard time letting that go. He challenged me to spend a large amount of time praying for God to change my heart. I did, and He did! I never dreamed I would be a pastor's wife, but here I am and I am SO thankful for God's plans. They are ALWAYS so much better than mine!

So here we are in Hughes Springs, TX...

I remember when we first moved here I wondered if it would ever feel like home. It's taken almost 7 months, but I feel more and more like this is home. Our house is wonderful, and we are SO thankful for it, but more than just the building we live in, the people who come to the church on the other side of our fence week in and week out have made this our home. They have welcomed us with open arms. They have invited us into their homes, and some have even adopted us into their families. Riley and I spent most of the day today with one church family who have loved on us so much, and there's no way "thank you" could ever express just how grateful we are for this family! I could tell story after story of family after family who has gone out of their way to care for us. Thank you, Lord, for bringing us here! Thank you for entrusting my husband as the pastor of a healthy church where the people WANT to try new things, reach out to not just our neighborhood but the world, and desire to grow in You! Thank you for bringing us to a great town with incredible people. Thank you for ministering to us through your church body. We are so unworthy, yet YOU are so merciful and gracious!

Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen. Jude 24-25

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this encouraging post, Laura! I have recently found myself getting discouraged with the church and the Lord has been challenging me to really love people the way I should. It's not always easy being a pastor's wife :) You've motivated me to do better! Miss you!