Dear Friends,

In some ways, I feel like I have been moving since we arrived here a little less than three years ago.  We moved from North Carolina, we moved Luke and Krysta from NC.  We both moved into a rental house here on SSI.  After 10 months we moved to the home we bought.  We moved Luke and Krysta to a home they bought in Brunswick.  The church sold part of the 3rd floor and I moved my office across the hall.  My son Alex graduated and we moved him to Brunswick.  The church sold more of the 3rd floor and we had to move everything out and into storage.  After Luke passed away and we moved Krysta and Liam out of her house and into an apartment.  We helped Alex move to Savannah.  The church sold the 3rd floor offices and we again had to move things to storage.  Alex moved again, this time to Richmond, VA.  Now, we as a church, are moving to our new home on Marsh’s Edge… I think my feelings are justified.

Moving is exciting, exhausting, humiliating, frustrating and filled with anxiety all rolled together into one experience that we look forward to being over.  This is not one of those times where the joy is in the journey. No, the joy is in the last item being put away and falling into the most comfortable chair to survey and appreciate all that has been accomplished and imagining the future ahead.

As a church family, that is where we stand right now.  The finishing touches are being put on our new home.  The moving trucks have emptied out our storage units and much of the furniture and equipment from our current Fellowship Hall/office space.  All of this has been staged in various rooms in the new building as we await our permission to occupy.  Our last day at our current home (June 25th) and our first day at our new home (June 26th) looms large on the calendar.  The excitement in our church family grows and grows as those days get tantalizingly closer!

I have only been waiting for this moment for two years and ten months.  Some of you have been waiting and preparing, praying and saving for nearly twenty years!  That’s exhausting, and I imagine every little delay has been a frustrating gut-punch as you have sought to do what you felt God calling you to do and what you have been working so hard to accomplish.  Finally, the dreams have taken shape and the threshold is just waiting to be crossed and now, the anxiety kicks in.  What if there’s a problem, what if the final inspection doesn’t go well?  What happens if we don’t get permission to occupy in time?  Where will all the furniture go, will we need to buy more or get rid of some?  Do we rent trucks or do we hire movers?  So many questions, so many worries!  Fortunately, we have Rick and several other members of our family who have been working diligently and tirelessly to answer these questions and to deal with situations as they arise.

The packing and the moving have begun!  Every time I move, I find it slightly humiliating to realize how much junk I have accumulated and kept and even moved from place to place!  Human nature being what it is, a church is no different.  We are currently having and will continue to have many “Why in the world are we keeping this” moments.  That old saying, “One man’s junk is another man’s treasure,” is on full display as we dig through cabinets, drawers and closets asking the question, “Should we keep this?” 

In the end, however, it will all be worth it.  The new building is going to be beautiful!  We will have room to welcome guests and to expand.  There will be room for discipleship seminars and ultimate frisbee showdowns, fellowship dinners and children’s worship, weddings, funerals and so very much more!  I for one am looking forward to sitting down in my office with a great sigh of satisfaction as I imagine our very bright future together in our new home!

Only by Grace!

Pastor Mike