It has been my privilege to serve the Lord as president of this ministry since 2001. All glory to God for what He has done during that time.
From time to time in recent years I, and the rest of our Board of Directors, have discussed and prayed about how much longer I should serve in my current role. Our conclusion has consistently been for me to continue.
The purpose of this communication is to inform you that the Lord has been saying to me it is time for me to step aside as president.
As you might imagine, I have prayed and listened to God a number of times regarding this. And the message from Him has been the same. So at the face-to-face Board meeting some weeks ago, I explained this to them. We discussed and prayed and decided together to move forward with a succession process.
The Lord used some realities to help me understand why now is the time to step aside. None of them substituted for His clear leading, but they did help it make sense to me.
For one thing, it has been a joy for me to see what godly, gifted leaders God has raised up in our ministry. They are extremely capable of leading us into the future. As I watch them pray, open the Word, and live out their faith, I praise God that they listen to and follow Him — even in challenging times.
As I see them think about and discuss issues and plans for the future, I sense profound wisdom and a cooperative spirit. And I am very encouraged by their commitment to our calling and their ability to motivate people to be excited about involvement in it. In summary, I am deeply encouraged by the breadth and depth of our leadership.
Second, in the last few years, I have had several health issues which have reduced my time availability, energy and focus. You may recall my heart problem four years ago. I have also had a hip replacement and two other surgeries. The most recent involved the removal of a significant skin cancer lesion from my scalp. The prognosis looks good, but there is an ongoing process to confirm that. I know these kinds of things can happen as a person gets older. The good news is that God is aware and in control of all this, as I mentioned in my last Connection article to you. So, I am simply applying what I shared with you — trusting Him for His outcomes.
Now, with COVID-19 becoming a world-changing pandemic, the question comes to mind: “Why do this now?” As the rest of the Board and I prayed and talked about that recently, we concluded that the Board should move forward with the succession process.
For one reason, God was the one who started this process, and He knew the COVID-19 crisis was imminent.
Another reason is that the need is not just for someone to lead through the end of 2020, but for a leader and team to guide us through the potentially challenging times of the next few years. That only accentuates the need to make a wise, orderly selection and transition over the next several months. Meanwhile I will continue to serve as president. Plus, we are now praying and thinking intensely about where our ministry must go to pursue our calling in the years after 2020. Making the transition helps to inform and improve that process.
I stand ready to help the new leader succeed and to play an ongoing role in helping us and other ministries collaborate to see the Great Commission fulfilled soon.
God willing, Judy and I do not plan to retire. God is moving in remarkable ways today, and we want to continue to be a part of that with you! Please pray for wisdom for all involved in this process.
Yours in Christ,
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