A New Path?

Earlier today, if you were at Westwood Church, you would have heard me talk about a leadership transition and move that may be happening in my life.  It is possible that some of the details were a bit blurry for you (since you were probably not expecting me to announce it), so here is a bit more information.

The short story is this … near the end of this month, a final decision will be made regarding my candidacy to become the next President of our MB Biblical Seminary.  I am inviting you to pray for continued discernment for everyone involved, so that the best decision will be made.

The longer story, however, is this … a number of times in recent months I have been asked to think about the possibility of being the next President of our national graduate theological school, with locations in both Langley and Winnipeg (MB Biblical Seminary is a ministry of our national conference of MB churches, is part of ACTS (on the TWU campus), and is affiliated with CMU in Winnipeg).  At the beginning of March, the search team approached me with a formal request to consider becoming an applicant for the position.

After initial resistance to the idea of transition from Westwood, Jennifer and I have wrestled deeply with the possibility, and have spent innumerable hours talking, thinking, and praying (it has consumed much of our hearts and minds, especially in recent weeks).  Eventually, we came to a place of discerning that this could very well be the next chapter that God has for us.

Part of the discernment process will become public this week, and I want you to hear from me that this possibility is being discussed, rather than have you find out through rumour, Facebook, etc (which is why I took the unusual step of talking about it at church today).

During the last few weeks, the words of Psalm 34:4 have been particularly significant for me, as there are a number of things that I could be “fearful” about (the impact on our family, how it might temporarily affect the mission of Westwood, etc).

This has not been an easy or quick process, and assuming the final discernment is positive, we will deeply grieve leaving both Westwood and Prince George.  Westwood has become a great home for us, we have a very good leadership team, and our family has loved being a part of what God has been doing in and through our church community!  And in fact, because of the healthy ministries and relationships here, if final discernment turns out to be “no” (either by us or by MBBS), we can continue on with Westwood with great enthusiasm.

So what does that mean as of today?  Essentially, it means that our time at Westwood may be coming to an end, and we are inviting you to join us in prayer for discernment.  The process will be complete in the next two weeks, and on Sunday May 29 I will be able to let the church know whether or not we will be moving this summer.

Thank you for praying with and for us!

Mark

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