Saying Goodbye

Written by evan on March 18, 2007 at 9:34 PM

Here is the letter I read today addressed to Macomb Assembly of God.

Katie and I have recently accepted a position at Mattoon First Assembly of God as Family Life Pastors.

Our role will be to help nurture healthy families. We will also be giving leadership and vision to 6th-12th grades and will have a presence in the ministries from brith-5th. Four weeks from today on Easter April 8th, will be our last Sunday with you, and then that week we will make our move to Mattoon.

In November of 1995, my senior year in high school, I made a decision to follow Jesus and model my life after him. 2 1/2 years later while in college, I found myself during the middle of the night on a golf course in myrtle beach, South Carolina, asking God what he had for my life. He spoke very distinctly for me to pursue ministry.

In the spring of 2000, as I was a month away from being credentialed minister, I made a call the Youth Department at the District Office of the Illinois Assemblies of God, asking them about youth pastors positions. Immediately the District Youth Director, Ron Heitman, gave me the contact information for Macomb Assembly of God. I made a phone call to Pastor Puccini, sent a resume and set up a interview time and on Wednesday, May 10th I preached my first youth service with a room filled of students and leaders that I had never met before. As I walked into this white room with this, blue, gray and white strip on the wall.

Who was there on that day? (Brian McCombs, Jennifer Bunch, Thurman, Meredith, Jeremiah??)

Do you remember what topic I talked about? I do because I brought a bag of Salt & Vinegar Chips as an illustration about being the Salt of the Earth. And Jeremiah Ulm ate the entire bag of chips during my message.

After that night, Pastor Puccini offered me the position, and then preceded to drive me by an apartment that Bob Barry had available at Rain Tree.

Many incredible things have happened since then.

Spiritual Moments
- The Episcopalians Father’s daughter being baptized in the Holy Spirit
- Water Baptizing Aaron & Kelly Gantner
- The transformation of a Raelyn Tournear and her call to the ministry
- Chris Primmer being saved out of a life of drugs, and then immediately following after Jesus with everything inside of him. One of the proudest moments of ministry here, was in 2003 on a missions trip to the homeless in San Francisco and Chris strapping on this bug spraying backpack, that had been converted into a drink dispenser.
- watching our students cry as they have to saw goodbye to a Honduran Pastor they had just meet 10 days earlier, but felt a strong Christian connection.

Funny Moments
- Hitting a deer with the people mover going 55mph, and seeing the deer be launched into the air.
- Dusty Rauch race across Chandler Park, chasing after the ice cream truck.
- window blew out of the people mover while jill heberling was driving it to camp.
- thinking I lost trent and jeff’s guitars in the costa rica airport, so I ask someone in the little Spanish I know where the “ dos bano’s”, thinking that was Spanish of guitar, the guy proceeded to take me to the bathroom.

I’ve have spent a quarter of my life here in Macomb, doing life together with Macomb Assembly of God. Thank you for taking a risk on a 21yr old 7 years ago. In the last 7 years, your fingerprints have been all over our lives. And the same way our fingerprints are all over you, the church, and the community.

In the room today, we have people that have been our brothers, our sisters, our father, our mothers, our grandfathers, and our grandmothers. Thank you to every Pastor, Deacon, Sunday School Teacher, every attender and guest that we have worked with here.

We love pastor and his family, the staff and his families, the church, and the community here. Thank you for everything.

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