We have felt for several months now that the Lord was preparing us to leave First Baptist Fort Smith. We had no idea what that looked like, but we were very prayerful that the Lord would prepare our hearts and to open the doors He wanted open. Back in May, before Evie was born, Daniel got a call from our regional Baptist Association guy (Sorry Jeff I don't know you're real title, LOL) saying he had given Daniel's name to a local pastor (Russ Tyler) who was looking for an Associate Pastor. He met with him over lunch and then didn't hear anything for a while, so we figured that was that. We continued on with our lives, adjusting to being a family of four and continued to pray.
Fast forward to Labor Day weekend. Daniel got another call from Russ. He wanted to meet for lunch again on the Tuesday after Labor Day. We continued to pray, continued to ask the Lord to open doors He wanted open and to close the ones He didn't want for us. After meeting with him, Daniel called and with awe in his voice, told me that Russ had basically offered him the job--right there on the spot! We were in complete shock to say the least.
Things progressed pretty quickly from there. Daniel went and had an official interview with the Personnel Team and the Finance Team. After that passed, Daniel had a meeting with the head pastor at FSFBC and informed him of his new job. They were genuinely excited for us in our next step and told Daniel how much they had appreciated having him on staff the last three and a half years. They even asked him to read an official resignation letter to the church to let them know. It was our sincere hope to leave on good terms and I truly believe we did that. Daniel's last day at work was October 20th and on October 23rd, we were officially voted in at First Southern Baptist Church in Central City.
The Lord, in His loving kindness, has allowed us to stay here in Fort Smith! It wasn't His plan to move us far away and for that I am SO grateful. We get to stay here and continue the relationships we started and form new ones at our new church. We can hardly believe it!
But of course, we can't just do one major life change...we have to do at least two. We are trying to sell our house and move closer to FSBC. Right now it is a 30 minute drive (one way) from our house in Van Buren. We would really like to move into East Fort Smith so we can drastically reduce our drive time. It has been a pain in the rear to get our house ready over these last 2 months, but we finally got it listed last Friday! If you know of anyone looking for a GREAT house in a wonderful neighborhood, send them our way! The sooner we can move the better!