Note:Thank you John for writing from the heart and contributing to our Religion page.
How did my family keep it together after leaving a good teaching job of 11 years and a house that my wife had designed from the ground up? A good start for an answer is in the book of Colossians. The book was written to reject false teaching that Jesus isn’t everything. That Jesus as Savior sounds great, but Lord? That’s a whole new ballgame! The legacy of Colossae was it used to be a leading city in Asia Minor (present day Turkey), but ended up being surpassed in greatness by Lacodea and Hieropolis (4:13). So people naturally, would be skeptical of anything about Jesus. “Christ is ok, but we want to get back our pride against the other two cities!”
Paul rejects this teaching, and eloquently says in our text, that Christ is the reason the city exists at all!
The same can be said for our ministry in Carroll Springs UMC. To that end, this will be my final article for the Athens Daily Review. In the Methodist church, Pastors are not hired, they are appointed. I have been appointed to Troup UMC/Walnut Grove UMC and this Sunday will be my final one at Carroll Springs. Like the Christian audience that read Colossians, I have learned over the years that a life dedicated to Jesus Christ is not my own, that sin can only be redeemed by the grace of Christ’s death on the Cross, and that Justification only takes place because I continue to believe that the Resurrection of Jesus is the only hope I have. Skeptics of our move didn’t like that we left teaching for full time ministry in Carroll Springs, others don’t like it that we have been appointed to Troup/Walnut Grove UMC. Yet now more than ever, I am convinced that Tracy Lawrence song is still true today: “Time marches on.” Why? Exciting times are coming for Troup/Walnut Grove UMC and will continue in Carroll Springs UMC. What other thought can explain why time moves forward and excitement is coming besides Jesus Christ? My wife and I owe a lot to a ton of people from Lubbock till now for what has happened. But don’t fool yourselves, without the prevenient (assisting) grace of Christ, none of what’s happened in our life would even be possible. So from the bottom of our hearts, thank you to all who have made a Godly impact on our family. It will mean more than words will ever convey. Yet the future does not demand words, it demands action. May God act on our behalf, and on behalf of Troup/Walnut Grove UMC, Carroll Springs UMC, and all who honor the Lamb who was slain. He is worthy, He is Holy, and no matter what happens, “To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy— to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.” — Jude 1:24-25