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It was a taste of heaven...

Written by Jonathan Albright. Posted in Albright Blog

On Sunday, November 13 Sarah and I made it known to our Brookside family the call of God to go to Salt Lake City and join 3 other men and their families to labor in a church planting initiative.

At the end of the message I preached from Hebrews 11 on the Pattern of Abraham's life of faith. I spent a few minutes exposing the great need to take the Gospel to needy cities and specifically to the Salt Lake Valley. We declared our submission to God's call on our lives to go united with this team of disciple makers to see this city and other cities reached for the Gospel through a church planting initiative. Here are some of the words I shared with our church family.

"I don’t know of a way to express our deep gratitude to this church for its influence in our lives. We look back on 10 years of seeing the hand of God work miracles in changing lives through the power of His Word. God has used you to develop a deep love in our hearts for the Church. We do not look at this transition in our lives as leaving Brookside, but rather being called out of this body to go take the Gospel to Salt Lake City. Our desire is to be partners with you toward this endeavor and we covet your prayers as we prepare for this mission. Our initial goal is to be moved to Salt Lake City in the Fall of 2012. I will be fully engaged in ministry here over the next few months as we shepherd existing leaders to carry on the work of the ministry. We rest in our Good Shepherd and are submitted to the Lord as he shapes the timeline and preparation for us to go and take the Gospel to Salt Lake City for the Glory of God."

I became overwhelmed by the joy that it has been to labor side by side with these wonderful people. The mutual love that develops in a body of believers is one of the most satisfying joys of the Christian life because it is sourced in the love of God. It was a taste of heaven! There were a few moments when I needed to pause to pray and collect my emotions. There were spontaneous shouts from the congregation! They said, "We love you guys," "We'll be praying for you!" "Our prayers go with you!" The response of our Brookside family was overwhelming and we are asking God to use this small step of faith in our lives to encourage others to walk by faith and not by sight! Sarah and I walked away from Sunday with a greater resolve in our hearts to give our lives to make disciples of Christ in the local church. I was sharing with one of our members yesterday that being a pastor at Brookside is like being in an incubator for missions. In some ways it is difficult to stay when you see the great need for the Gospel in many cities and you see illustrations all around you of the power of the Gospel that works everywhere it goes!

I am thankful for the pastoral team here and many dear friends for their support and influence in my life. It is exciting to think of how God is going to use our partnering together to take the Gospel to Salt Lake City for the glory of God!

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