It just dawned on me church family: We’re blood brothers (or brother and sister)! When we’re washed in the shed blood of Jesus, we’re brought into God’s family. We’re siblings and there’s not a thing that can change that! Not distance, not change in ministry, not lack of communication, nothing! Similar to how nothing can undo our adoption into the family of God, nothing can undo our forever blood brotherhood! As I think of leaving EBC this week, this thought gives me comfort.
I’ve enjoyed so many relationships in my nearly six years here. You’ve made it easy to pursue what we’ve been created for: Relationships. First, with our Lord God. Second, with each other. Many friendships have been forged as we’ve sought Jesus together (these are the best types of relationships!). Your loving friendship to Annette and me has expressed itself in some amazing ways, including car fixes, babysitting, financial gifts, etc. If Keyport can love even close to how you’ve loved us, while we’ll miss you, our family should thrive!
Speaking of loving and thriving, I can’t tell you how many times we’ve laughed together as a staff (I’m really going to miss this). I’ve had the privilege of working full-time with some of my best friends. Not only do I love them, but I really, really like them! Even their spouses are special to me (and Annette)! I’ve been able to be myself with them and they love me for who I am (in Christ), not for what I do.
I’m going to miss making Sharon laugh while I sing about my brown pants, etc. I’m going to miss Linda-Ann’s truly “from the heart” smiles and hugs. I’m going to miss the wisdom and the coke drinking (He’s always drinking a coke!) of former Pastor and current elder Ryan Donovan. I’m going to miss Ryan Aufenkamp not knowing what to do with my many awkward comments. I’m going to miss the deep conversations with my office-mate/bff Jose. And I’m going to miss the absolute pleasure of working for a boss, Toby, that is Christ-like in so many important ways. His impact on my ministry and the lives of my family cannot be overstated. This is just scratching the surface of what I’m going to miss about these exceptionally wonderful people.
Rest assured, between the folks mentioned above and the Elder Team, you are in very good hands at Evergreen. Knowing this makes it much easier to leave you friends. Please pray for me/our family and that supernatural ministry would take place up there. And know that this isn’t goodbye, this is simply “see you later”.
May the Lord bless you and keep you and give you His Peace!
Your Forever Blood Brother,
Pastor Matt (firstname.lastname@example.org)