January 14, 2011 by Stephen
January 1st of this year marked the beginning of a new adventure for me. I started a new job at the church – Associate Pastor for Spiritual Development and Administration. I’ll miss working with the youth and children, but the reality is that in my new position I’ll still get to be a part of their lives – I just won’t be directly responsible for those ministries anymore.
2010 was an interesting year at the church. One of our ministers retired and another resigned because of a move to a new house in a different county presented too long of a commute. After Mark retired, I was approached with the idea of transitioning to a new position within the church. This turned out to be a good time to step back and evaluate things and to seek guidance from God about my calling. Did I still feel called to youth ministry? Did I still feel called to Westwood? Did I feel that God could be calling me to a new ministry role? There were lots of things to pray about and to talk with Randa and close friends about.
One thing that I have always appreciated about Westwood and about Pastor Jim is the encouragement I have received and continue to receive. Whether it was during good times or bad times, I have always felt valued and I have always felt like people wanted me to succeed. Pastor Jim has been especially good at this. He’s also been good at pushing me to evaluate my gifts and my calling. After several good discussions with Jim, with the Personnel Committee, and with Randa and friends, and after much prayer I felt certain that God was calling me to stay at Westwood and to take this new ministry opportunity.
I enjoyed the transition time at the end of last year, and I had a really nice last weekend as the Youth Pastor. I am looking forward to the growth that will come in my life as I take on this new job. I’m excited about the possibilities that this job offers. I’m looking forward the working closer with Jim, I’m looking forward to my work with the church website, and I’m looking forward to the possibilities that could come with all the different spiritual formation opportunities at the church.
New Year. New Job. New Possibilities. New Excitement. May 2011 be a great year!