10 years ago Matt & I started dating. 10 years ago Journey Church was established. I always thought this was the coolest thing...but it's really not a coincidence. It's the plan God had for us all along. This post isn't about us though...
Over the past few weeks our church, Journey Church, has been celebrating our 10th anniversary. Our Sunday services have been full of laughter, memories, looking ahead, and LOTS of tears. I can't help but to think "what if.." What if God had not brought us to meet our friends Pam & Daniel Gardner through Camp Caswell? What if we had not had said "yes" to visiting with them the week after our wedding? We have been forever changed because we chose very early on in our marriage to make Journey a part of our lives. This post isn't about Journey either...it's about Jesus and how He has been so good to us and to our church. I am blown away by His faithfulness and goodness...
Matt & I both grew up in Southern Baptist churches. We knew about the Gospel and both accepted Jesus as our Savior early in life. However, it wasn't until we were older that we learned about what it meant to have a relationship with Jesus. It wasn't until attending Journey that we actually learned how to live it out.
We started out as volunteers on Sundays at Journey...Matt served on the tech team and I served with elementary kids. We never in a million years thought that within a year of attending Journey, Matt would be asked to join the staff as the tech director...which is something he always dreamed of doing, but was never sure how it would happen.
When I took a break from teaching, or what I thought was a forever break from teaching....ha, I never thought I would serve on staff for two years. I loved every minute of what I did at Journey and God taught me a lot about himself and who I am in Him...it was not just a coincidence that they had an opening for this job when they did. I thought I was going to quit teaching and become a stay at home mom. Within 6 months of Laney being born, Matt and I knew that staying at home wasn't an option for me. I was bored and we needed the money. In a random parking lot conversation with my friend Lisa, I learned that they were interested in me working on their team. Before I knew it, I was working as an administrative assistant to the next steps team. In the two years that I worked at Journey, God reminded me that He had given me a passion for students and for teaching. As much as I would have loved to stay in my comfortable position at Journey, I knew I had to get back to the classroom. Now I get to work with girls every day and allow Him to be His hands and feet through me.
Not only have both Matt & I been impacted by what God's doing through Journey, we've been able to begin raising both of our children there. Both Laney and Ben LOVE going to Journey on Sunday mornings and are learning that God loves them and He wants to be their friend forever.
I have never been a part of a church that cares so deeply about sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with people. It's not about Journey, or about how big Journey gets, or even about how many people come to know Jesus at Journey on a Sunday morning. Journey is and has always been about reaching a city for the sake of Jesus and about reaching the world for the sake of Jesus. I could write all day about the countless stories of God's faithfulness and how He has used Journey to bring people closer to him...from Africa to South America, to right here in our city God is at work.
Matt & I are forever grateful that we get to be a part of a ministry that is not about themselves or about their own agenda. We are grateful for the leadership and that they aren't scared to make changes when necessary and speak truth into our lives. You guys are like family to us and have impacted our lives, our marriage, and our family in so many ways. We are humbled that God would chose us to be where we are and doing what we are doing, for His sake, in our city.
I know that our lives would be completely different from where we are now had we not have said "yes" to Jesus 7 years ago. I cannot wait to see what God is going to do in our city over the next 10 years at Journey and I am excited to be a part of it!