Three Years Later
On August 7, 2015 the Carlson family said "goodbye" to our Houston-area home and began a three-day road journey toward Baltimore and a new assignment from King Jesus. The questions in our minds as we embarked on that journey were numerous, and weighty: Will we make any friends in Baltimore? How will our young children respond to the drastic changes? What will their new school be like? How do you start a new church, anyway? Will this work? Are we totally crazy?
The answer to that last question might be a resounding "Yes," but the faithfulness, mercy, and presence of God in our lives over the last three years are undeniable. I have learned a great deal about myself (including fears and weaknesses I never knew I had), my wife (including resilience and resourcefulness I could scarcely have imagined), my children (including trusting, Godward hearts beyond what I could foresee), the Church (including friends and co-laborers in ministry without whom I would not survive), and God himself (including grace, kindness, instruction, and patience I do not deserve). If Imprint Community Church dissolved tomorrow (I don't think it will!), these three years have not been a waste. Not for me. Not for my family. Not for the sanctifying, purifying purposes of Jesus in our lives.
Imprint is not yet what we envision she can be. But there is undeniable spiritual fruit. God is at work in this new, imperfect, small, wonderful family. I pray for the Lord to grow us, in faith and in number. I don't know what the future looks like, but after three years I'm sure of this: the journey is worth it. The church is worth it. Jesus is worth it.
Friends, let's keep our hands to the plow and labor faithfully and diligently for his glory. Thanks for sharing this journey with me so far. Can't wait to see what the Lord will grow in the days and years to come!
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