I appreciate God's answers so much when I receive them, clearly and unmistakably. Last night I spent a long time talking to God and praying. I asked God specifically to direct our decision and give me a sense of peace about it. I awoke this morning without regret. Then as I prepared to write this blog I opened my Bible randomly to this scripture that I believe affirms our decision.
"Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you," (Ephesians 4:29-32 NIV)
Many months ago I shared a blog about returning to our home church to worship, even though it was an hour's drive back and forth. We had several reasons at the time and enjoyed the worship and fellowship with our church family very much. But things change. John is now retired so our budget is considerably different. We would leave home on Sundays at 7:30 a.m. and not return until 1:00 p.m.; very tiring for an old couple like us. Also, the leadership is taking a new direction that we aren't willing to support. So it is time to move on.
We will begin another church search, starting with one that has caught our eye over the past few months. Perhaps it has been in God's plan all along; we will see.
I will always love Bethel Grove Church, and in my heart it will be my home church forever. I love the people there and I will be praying for God to be the influence and sole reason for all that happens there in the future. But, for John and me, the time has come to begin a new chapter in our service to Our Father. We hope to discover how God wants to use us in this new community. It will take time but I know God will lead us.