When you’re called to leave a healthy church

Today my wife and I are celebrating our second year anniversary. We are sitting in our recliners watching a movie and trying not to stress about all the boxes that fill our living room or the clutter in the other rooms. We have two more full days of being residents of Russellville, and a few more weeks of being members at Crosslife Church.

 

In March of 2013 I joined Crosslife Church. The elders were so gracious to me before I became a member. They invited me to join an internship where I learned some of the marks of a healthy church. A lot of what I’d studied before about the early church started to make sense as we discussed the church according to Gods Word. Fortunately, some of the friends the Lord had led me to be with were members of this church too. It made the transition easier. I was not only welcomed into the body by my peers, but by others of different generational ages.

 

As Callie and I have planned for the big move members of the church and friends in the church have helped us out in huge ways. I’d always tell most of them it is amazing how hard it is to leave a solid church family. I told them it must be a good thing when it is difficult to leave people who God has used in uncommon ways. My wife and I do not deserve the goodness God has demonstrated to us through this body of believers.

 

It wasn’t until Callie and I got engaged that she decided to transfer her membership to Crosslife. The women of the church were so kind to her and it was so good for our marriage for her to build such incredible friendships with these women. I’ve noticed lately that it has been hard on her. She had made some hard sacrifices for our move to Kansas City so I can finish seminary. She has been able to be apart of such a biblically minded school and develop some beneficial friendships that will last a long time. But praise God that it is hard for us to leave. This means that we were called here for the time we’ve been here. Though we could always have done more of evangelism, God in His goodness has allowed us by His Spirit to be obedient with what He has led us to.

 

As we make our move to Kansas City, MO (if the Lord wills us to make it safely) we know He has already provided us a healthy congregation to be apart of. This congregation was the first one we visited back in the spring when we toured the seminary. Liberty Baptist Church in Liberty, MO will be our church home after making the move this weekend. My wife and I plan to start the membership process as soon as we move. God has allowed me to take part as a Pastoral Resident at the church in the Pastoral Training Center. The pastors who have started this internship are likeminded with the Christian members at Crosslife. They desire to be a Jesus-worshipping healthy church. This internship will consist of reading, serving the church, and discussing topics related to the local church. It will last for 18-months and my hope is that I will be done with school in two years. What happens after this is in the hands of the Sovereign Lord.

 

My wife and I are thankful for Crosslife and I am ecstatic about who the Lord is leading to serve this body of believers as we leave. I believe that this is such a pivotal time for this church and that God will use the people He is guiding to this body to challenge and grow the church in areas that may be weak. God knows how to grow His church. My prayer for the members at Crosslife is that you would continue to pray for the elders, deacons, and fellow believers. Remember that the church’s ministry is just as much your responsibility as the leaders. I hope that Callie and I encouraged you all to continue to be faithful church members. After seminary my end goal isn’t to become a pastor. I aspire to pastor a congregation but no matter what I desire to be a church member who serves in whatever capacity the Lord allows. However, I know that even in seminary or wherever I’m at in my life, I will always have the extraordinary calling of being a church member. Serve the church and the community well for the sake of Jesus Christ and the glory of God.

 

May the Lord delight in your work,

 

 

Taylor Cain June 28th 2017

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