I preached these words a few weeks ago, in the context of the final verses in Colossians. Last week I teared up because we are sending a family off to Saint Louis for the husband to pursue Seminary training. In the moment I thought, “Does my sermon matter as much as this moment – which embodies both doing family and remembering our mission?”
However, after church a good friend mentioned that he was sad that I miss Saint Louis so much. I was confused. I mean, it’s a great city, but I don’t miss ‘it’ terribly. When I choked up, that was why he thought that I was emotional. I didn’t think much about it because this man is not always to be trusted. ;). Then, my wife told me she had the same reaction. And last night another friend told me the same thing. When I told her the truth – that I will miss the family – she said, “I didn’t know you were that close.” “We aren’t really.” But, as their pastor, there is level of emotion and care that bolsters the friendship. I love them more than I know them.
Church is a family on Mission and we will miss the Carrolls. I like Saint Louis fine, but that is not why I felt strong emotion last Sunday. Pastor. Friends. Church. Spiritual Friendship. Community. Sending. Those are the reasons.