Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Three Groups of People

Every time I write, I think about three (maybe four or five!) groups of people.  I think about the Wilson folks who have been such a wonderful blessing.  And I think about the Parker folks who are yet unknown.  In addition, there are students, friends, and other odd assorted people who drop in here from time to time.  You all are agents of grace in the world!

An update:  So far our prayers have been answered regarding our housing details.  We are still believing that everything will come to closing in a sequence that will be a blessing for all.  We are not there yet but we are very hopeful.

Now, let me pick up where I left off in 2002!  It was about to be the end of a wonderful run in the community of Broomfield on the north suburban edge of the Denver metro area.  Nine fruitful years were about to come to a close.  The worshiping body had grown significantly and now numbered almost 1000 on any given Sunday.  Mission ministry was blooming, people were growing in faith through the Walk to Emmaus, and the Cornerstone Church had left the launch pad.  Great days, wonderful folks, and the presence of God that was faithfully available.

I remember the day I met with my D.S. Dr. Steve Burnett at a truck stop on I-25 to talk about the possibility of serving at our largest and most historic congregation in the Annual Conference.  I threw my hat in the ring, was tossed around in the competitive circles, and came out on the other side as the Senior Pastor of the First United Methodist Church of Colorado Springs.

I remember yet another day when I prayed with David Jackson in the morning and then met with David Buttery and Harvey McAnulty in the afternoon.  We met in the second floor conference room at the new Woodland Park Library with a view that was filled with the full magnificence of creation.  We were trying to nail down a vision that would honor God, motivate the congregation, and propel the ministry into the future.  David, Harvey...if you are out there you will remember that EPIC meeting.  It came together in a moment.  We knew we were on track.  Thanks!

I remember another day when Dr. Jeff Greenway came to town with his oldest son.  They were in the area at my invitation but they had an ulterior motive.  They wanted to ski Breckenridge!  Jeff and I were in seminary together in the 80's.  He was now the newly elected President of Asbury Theological Seminary and I was serving as a member of the Asbury Board of Trustees.  We sat in the hot tub that night talking about ministry, the seminary, and the way God had shaped our lives.  Several weeks later, Jeff called to offer me a position at the seminary as the Dean of the Beeson International Center for Biblical Preaching and Church Leadership.  It was a mouthful!  Ultimately, I said yes.  We were headed back to Wilmore to fulfill a life time dream of serving the place that had blessed us so deeply.

Goodbye ~ beautiful Colorado Springs! Hello 105 Hunter Circle, Wilmore, Kentucky.  I would be moving into the Dean's office that was currently occupied by Dr. J. Ellsworth Kalas.  Impossible!

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