An Open Letter …
Dear Calvary Family
Calvary is where it all started for me.
As I take some time to reflect and to think of my walk with the Lord, everything really comes back to the ministry and commitment of those at Calvary Baptist Church. I was first introduced to Calvary way back when the church was at Centre and John. Some of you will remember the church building, the side door, gravel parking lot, the creepy bathrooms on the bottom floor, Sunday School, and some of us were even part of the “Time Tunnel” … my first introduction to being in a musical. Bring back some memories?
I was also one of the kids that was impacted by the Bus Ministry. Every Sunday, I was picked up at 52 Park Road South. Thank you to those who drove the bus, to those who picked me up. Some of those individuals became friends over the years. Because of this ministry, I was also introduced Day Camp. Growing up, we did not experience the same lifestyle that we currently do. I was fortunate enough to attend Day Camp every summer due the generous hearts of Sponsors. I never did meet or find out who sponsored me to attend Day Camp, however, thank you. You played an integral part of my upbringing. Day Camp will be forever a memory … in fact that’s where people began to call me Chilly!!
Fast forward to Stockades / Battalion, Youth Group, FEB Central Winter / Summer Retreats at MBC / Muskoka Woods, SNACS, eating ice cream with two others in the gym storage, getting Baptized, Quebec Missions trip, Worship leading, B.A.S.I.C., His Kids, teaching Sunday School, Jr. High events, car / sound rally’s, progressive dinners, Missionary Conferences – my favourite was always the kids version, VBS, Urbana (this is definitely another Blog). These were and are some of my most memorable memories. There are so many stories to share.
I am thankful for the life long friendships that were formed over those precious years. It’s amazing that most of us still have some kind of contact with each other – either via Facebook or some kind of social media. This past weekend, some of us were able to spend a couple of hours together. It was such a meaningful time. Let’s not wait another 20 years to get together again!! We should never take for granted the friendships that we have, nor the ministry at Calvary.
I am also grateful for the men who poured into my life. Growing up without a father figure, many of you stepped up and walked with me, guided me and loved me as your own. I have so many memories of Canoe trips, going to a Jays game, picking us up in Stony Creek because of a car problem. There were men at the church who I looked up to and yet they didn’t even know. Thank you. In part, I have become who I am, because of your willingness to be used as an instrument of God. .
Calvary, thank you for your faithfulness in sharing the Gospel, your desire to serve the Lord and for your heart for Missions. “To know Him and to make Him known.” And so, as our family begins a new chapter in our lives, this is our desire – to know Christ more and more and to Make Him known to those who live in Hong Kong. I was asked by a colleague: “Are you going as Missionaries?” Not officially. Will there be a missions minded intentionality? Yes. Growing up, it was a desire to be in full time ministry. It was a desire to be a Youth Pastor at one point. I have always wanted to attend seminary. It was always a “not right now.” As I consider what we will be doing in Hong Kong, it’s amazing to see how God is moving and working. “It’s time to go.” I will be in full time ministry. Given the opportunity to disciple kids every day, being involved in other ministries … plus other opportunities that we are praying about. It is always about God’s timing. “His ways are not our ways. His thoughts are not our thoughts.”
Our desire is to do the work of the ministry. To see lost people saved, saved people matured, matured people multiplied.
Thank you Calvary Baptist Church. Thank you for instilling in me a heart for Missions. Thank you for equipping so many people over the years. Thank you for “being steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, … know that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”
Keep in touch and who knows, maybe my family will end up on your Missions board one day!!
You are loved!