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Next week I'll be arriving in Papenburg, Germany early on a Sunday morning. So I decided to look for a Reformed or Baptist church to visit in the town where I will be staying. No luck. Well, I did find two churches. But when I looked deeper at these two churches I discovered that they lacked good biblical leadership and solid biblical doctrine. That's too bad. Unlike these churches in Papenburg, we at Pinelands are very blessed by God with biblical leadership and doctrine and the Pastoral Search Committee's goal is to preserve that blessing by taking..."the harder road".
Taking the harder road is not usually my first choice. I too often choose the path of least resistance. But as I grow older I'm learning more and more that the harder road is worth it in the end. Besides, the Lord calls us to the harder road. Doesn't he? Jesus never took short cuts. He chose the harder road. He chose obedience and duty. He endured temptation, humiliation, rejection, the wrath of God the Father and the brutality of the cross. "He humbled himself and became obedient to death, even death on a cross!" (Phil. 2:8). The search for a qualified, biblically fit pastor for Pinelands may, at times, appear as a difficult process. But in light of such sacrifice from the Lord, it's not even close to difficult.
We, as a pastor search committee, are praying for the Lord's leading in our decision. Sure, we could easily find a pastor for Pinelands by next week and be done with it. But wouldn't that be the easy road? Yes. We are choosing the harder road for a reason. And why? Well, because it will pay off in the end. The Lord will bless our efforts.
I can say without a doubt that each member of the committee is diligently working and praying, with joy, to accomplish the task to which we have been assigned. We seek a result that will honor God, reach our neighbors and build this local assembly we call Pinelands. Finding the right pastor for our church takes work. But it's a vital part of maintaining a church that is blessed by God. The last thing I would ever want to see happen is for this city to end up with only a couple of churches that are weak and without proper leadership and doctrine. Taking the harder road and trusting in God's guidance will prevent that. Let's all work hard together to make Pinelands the kind of church that a complete stranger, even one from Germany, could look up and say " I think I'll join them for church while I'm here".
Just a note to thank all of you for your diligence, patience, dedication and service. It has not gone unnoticed and is very much appreciated. God will reveal His man in His time and as we know He has already chosen who it will be and now it is your job to seek him out (no small task). Keep up the good work and God bless you all. With love, Grandma Jerri
Like you the harder road isn't my first choice. But the road we're on leads to the man the Lord has waiting in the wings. I'm blessed beyond measure because I couldn't have chosen a better group to be on the harder road with.
Well said, Keith! Yes, we are on the hard road, but it will not be without great reward. The Lord has plans for Pinelands! Anything worth having is worth fighting for, and that's where we are...in the trenches, searching for the one whom the Lord has already chosen. Praise Him!