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A letter from Paul

On Sunday we shared at The Journey about a visioning and assessment time that I am currently on. Our Lead Team decided to give me a time away from regular duties to prepare for the next phase at The Journey. Matt had a time like this earlier this year.

The Journey launched almost 14 years ago. In preparation for the launch of the church the Lewis and Urban families (as well as a small core of people) prayed and planned and dreamed.  Matt and I spent many, many hours strategizing, planning and praying.  The last 14 years has been the ride of my life.  I am so much better as a husband , father, pastor, follower of Jesus because of the experiences here at The Journey and the relationships I've been able to develop with so many of you.  

Throughout our history as a church there has never been a shortage of new initiatives and strategic decisions that have had to be made.  Even in the last several years we've launched a 2nd site, had another church merge with us, move to a permanent location for our northside location, hired a campus pastor, implemented the All In Vision campaign to expand our facilities and impact and now are getting ready to embark on a building project.  The Lead Team (our board of directors) believed this window of time before the building project began in earnest was a perfect time for Matt and I to recharge, to gain fresh vision, to pray and plan and prepare for the next phase, just like we did in those early days before our launch.  

So, what will I be doing over the next weeks?  It will be filled with rest, time with family, time with Jesus, dreaming about the future, and learning.  I will spend some time just decompressing and resting, I'll spend extra time w/family, I'll be spending lots of time with Jesus - my goal is to spend more time with Him than anyone else.  I will be seeing a counselor to look back at the past years and look forward to the future.  I will be visiting other churches to see what they are doing and learn from them.  I will be reading 8 books and talking with some specific churches and taking a few online seminars all with a specific focus that we have identified as a growth area for us as a church.  I will be taking time to assess where we are currently and what our next steps need to be.  

Would you pray for me over these next weeks?  I want to be in tune with Jesus, listening to Him.  We want to always lead out of the overflow of a heart connected to Jesus and we always want to lead The Journey in the way Jesus wants us to go.  It is all about Him.  Because of this time away, I want to love Him more, and have my love for Him bleed over into my relationships with you and the way I lead our team.

I am so grateful to our Lead Team for this time away, for our amazing staff team who carries the extra weight when Matt or I are away, to all of our incredible volunteers and ministry teammates who live out the mission of The Journey week in and week out.  It's an honor to serve & do live with each of you.  See you soon!