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New Year, New Hopes, Same Jesus

You might find it funny to know that New Year’s is favorite holiday of mine, perhaps my favorite secular holiday. I like spending time reflecting on the past year, reading my journal, scrawling down some notes about the coming year. Inevitably, reflecting well on the past helps you to live more intentionally into the future. Some of you probably set goals for the year, or hopes of things you will experience or accomplish. I also love New Year’s because it reminds me of the Gospel. Every day with Jesus is a new day. He forgives me anew each morning. He promises me peace, strength, life, and hope. So whether I reach a goal I set or I don’t, I already have everything I need in Jesus.

As we enter a new year at Zion, many of you are wondering what the future shape of ministries and staffing will look like. I am too. We have spent some good months in prayer, discussion, discernment, and receiving feedback from all of you. Personally, I have new hopes for this new year, but I am confident in our Savior Jesus, who is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He will be faithful to us each new day.

To keep you as informed as possible, here is a brief update as to where we are at, and hopefully you’ll encounter this information in other places, especially if you talk to an Elder or Council person. The Board of Elders has had good prayer and discussion about hiring or calling the next full-time staff person. The Elders hope to make a recommendation to Council by the end of January, then Council would initiate a process based on the recommendation.

The prayerful decision is to seek someone in the area of (1) worship and music or (2) discipleship (children, families, youth, Sunday School, small groups, outreach, etc.). The right person for either of these could be a Family Life Minister, Director of Christian Education, Deaconess, or even an Associate Pastor. There are a number of moving parts in every decision like this, which is why we want to surround it with much prayer, as well as calm, healthy discussion. I am proud of how respectful and godly discussions have been among leadership. I realize that for some of you this process seems too slow, and for others it seems too fast. That is the nature of how God made us uniquely different. So I ask for your prayers and patience.

I ask for your continued prayers for God to lead Zion, and that we would be faithful in following. Pray that leadership and Zion as a whole would be unified as we begin to make decisions. Pray for the eternal Jesus to be present in our new year and new hopes.

Serving Jesus,

Pastor Ryan