I have lived my life in the church. I’ve been attending since before I was born. My mother carried me faithfully to worship, prayer meetings, social events, and to serve for all the months I was growing in her womb. Within weeks after my early spring birth, she had me in church again, just as soon as she felt fairly confident that enough germs from the winter were gone. My parents formed a habit for me before I knew how badly I needed what the church had to offer.
The uncommon fellowship the church of Jesus Christ offers when it is truly being the body of Christ is what every human soul needs. People don’t crave attention—they crave connection. Jesus created His church to be the place where this connection and fellowship would meet the deepest needs of the heart and life. I have found it to be true in every season of my life.
I could fill pages with what this has meant to me, but let me just tell you what I have experienced at NewPointe. I came here as a young, inexperienced but passionate single pastor more than 30 years ago, and what I have experienced has been truly uncommon.
- I was accepted, loved, and shaped into being an effective pastor by the patience and prayers of this congregation.
- When I found Patty and brought her as my bride to Sugarcreek, we were surrounded by the love and friendship of the church family. They gave us the support we needed to build a strong, thriving marriage.
- As we added our four children to the family, this uncommon fellowship loved and encouraged them to grow in Jesus. The people became their heroes and role models. They have mentored them into passionate followers of Jesus. The church here has been SO uncommon, that all of our children feel some sort of calling and pull into Christian ministry. That’s not always the case with PKs. Often, there is so little true fellowship in churches that the pastor’s kids can’t wait to get away.
- I had cancer, a heart attack, and quadruple bypass surgery. This uncommon fellowship loved my family, made sure they had all the support they needed in our crisis, and did the same for me. The small groups in which we participated became even closer to us during these times and carried us through.
- My mother and father retired here, and found their small group to become truly a second family. When my mother got the cancer that eventually took her life, they were Dad’s and Mom’s lifeline. When Mom left us for heaven, they were the “friends that stick closer than a brother” to Dad.
- Dad is nearing heaven now, and the uncommon fellowship continues. His small group and his NewPointe friends minister to him in ways we can never repay.
- The fellowship of the church has given our children wise companions for friends, and they have navigated the perilous teenage years without scars. Our daughter Sarah is soon to be married (my, how time flies!), and she and her wonderful fiancé, Nate, found each other largely through the fellowship here.
- Our children have been given the opportunity to serve and grow and develop their gifts through the fellowship of NewPointe.
- The most fun and adventure we have ever experienced has been with the uncommon people of the church.
Oh, I could go on. But I will finish with this. Patty and I are thoroughly satisfied customers at NewPointe. Our children, now young adults, have known no other church. We are uncommonly satisfied with the fellowship here. I urge you to get deeply involved, now—for yourself, for your family, and for others.
We need each other.
And the world needs what we have.