Going There For To Make Disciples
“Go therefore and make disciples…” These were some of the very last words of Jesus and they were undoubtedly ringing in the ears of the saints throughout the centuries when they decided to leave home to go here and there for to make disciples. It is a privilege and a great honor to move to a new place as an ambassador of King Jesus! But there’s also a cost. So it’s with this dichotomy, a sense of excitement and a sense of loss, that I announced this past weekend that the Daniells family is being called to go and make disciples in the Bremerton area at Keyport Bible Church (getting emotional as I think about this!).
If this is coming as a shock to you, I apologize. I initially announced this likelihood at the annual business meeting over a month ago but didn’t feel it would be helpful to fully broadcast this unless it became a reality. Well, a couple of weeks ago, at Keyport’s annual business meeting, they voted decisively to extend the invitation for me to become their Senior Pastor! While I am humbled by this and feel UNequal to the task (inadequate), I believe with all my heart that Jesus is calling me to this particular mission field on His behalf.
I want you to know that part of the reason why Annette and I believe this is God’s doing, is because we didn’t seek this out (we were not actively seeking another place of ministry as we love EBC so much). Through mutual ministry connections, Keyport learned about me and reached out. After months of “Q&A’s” and getting to know each other, it became apparent to me that, as Toby put it, there is a “good plot of dirt” there and, by the grace of God and with His bountiful help, I’ve got the right tools to help bring about much fruit. As I mentioned this past weekend, they are looking for someone with a Shepherd’s heart who loves the sheep. I’m lacking in my fair share of areas, but one area I believe I excel in is caring for Christ’s flock. I’ve already very much enjoyed connecting with several in the church there, especially the Elders, Youth Pastor, and retired Senior Pastor that I will be teaming up with to minister to their 150+ person flock. If we have to leave, I’m so thankful that it’s to a place like Keyport.
Yet, Annette and I (and the kids for that matter), are very much starting to feel the loss of soon leaving you dear brothers and sisters. If you watched or were present for the 11am service, this didn’t get communicated very well so let me be very clear: We love EBC and leaving all of you is going to be one of the hardest things we ever have to do! You’ve become our family and have helped nurture us through so much, including the births of our last two babies, Zeke and Dottie. I’ve become a part of a special team here and I don’t know if I’ll ever truly have this again (although I hope and pray that I will at Keyport!). You and the rest of the Evergreen family will always hold a very special place in our hearts and we hope that the relationships we’ve built will continue not only in eternity, but throughout our lifetimes.
I know that sounds like “goodbye”, but it’s really not! You’re not getting rid of me that quickly! Annette and I still have ministry to do at EBC through at least late March but very possibly through April. We’ll be sure to give you plenty of heads-up before we move. Speaking of moving, please be in prayer that God would lead us to the right house and that it would be obvious. Thank you dear church! We love you!