On Sunday, September 16, 2012, I submitted my resignation as senior pastor of the historic 193-year-old First Baptist Church of Shelbyville, Kentucky with a heavy heart and with tear-filled eyes. Words can NEVER express my gratitude for the support and encouragement given to me during my time there. I assume the position of Team Leader of Church Consulting & Revitalization for the Kentucky Baptist Convention on October 1, 2012.
We will continue to live in Shelbyville and we plan to continue to be active members of Shelbyville First Baptist Church. Because of my Kentucky Baptist Convention job responsibilities, I will be out many Sundays, but my family will continue to attend regularly. Allow me to share a few final thoughts concerning the days ahead.
Let’s trust God together. Let’s thank God for our journey together and fully trust Him as we move forward. Although I did not see this transition coming, God was not surprised. In looking back now, I can see His hand in preparing me for this new role and I can see His hand in preparing our church for this next season of ministry.
Show your loyalty to God and to Shelbyville First Baptist. This has been a great church for over 193 years. God will provide you with a leader. Now is the time for you to support the church with your attendance, your service, and your finances.
Make this a time to grow closer to God and to each other. Great churches always unite during a time of transition. Give visible love and support to one another and make this an opportunity for a fresh start. Walk close to our Father and close to His children.
Release us and help us follow God. I have always taught you that we should follow God regardless of the cost. Please know that our hearts are heavy. We humbly seek your blessing and your understanding. Help us have courage and release us to follow God. Pray that our faith will be strengthened and that God will anoint our ministry to the churches across the state of Kentucky.
Love your new pastor. When God brings a new pastor to you, give him the same love and support you gave me. Be his friend and be his partner in ministry. But remember, I will be his biggest cheerleader!
Don’t be a stranger. We have treasured your friendship and partnership in the gospel. We still desire and need your friendship as fellow Christians in the Lord’s work. Please include us in your prayers, your friendships, and your gatherings.
Love Jesus. There is no greater joy than serving and loving Jesus because of His grace and His love. He is faithful and I encourage you to faithfully love Him above all else!