Sunday, August 14, 2011

Saying Goodbye

Today our church said goodbye to our worship pastor and his dear family. After ministering to our church for 28 years, God is moving them to Florida to take care of aging parents. While our hearts are mourning this great loss to our church body, we are also rejoicing that God has arranged a perfect job for Todd and enabled him to make this painful, but necessary, decision to honor Tandy’s parents in their final years.

In the Sunday school time this morning, we gathered to give open mic testimonies of how God has used the Murray family in our lives. I knew I wanted to say something during this time, but how in the world do you condense all the blessings you’ve received from an entire family for the last 15 years (That’s how long I have personally been at my church.) into just a few minutes?

It wasn’t easy, and I may have choked out a few of these words through tears, but below is the testimony I gave.

I’ve learned a lot from the ministry of Todd Murray, but I think the biggest thing I’ve learned from him is the difference between a music minister and a worship pastor.

Anyone involved in the worship ministry will tell you that Todd is not a musician who is also a worshiper; he’s a worshiper who just happens to be a musician. And as a faithful shepherd, he is constantly encouraging us to be the same.

It was never enough for the choir to just make beautiful music. Todd encouraged us at every rehearsal to worship while we sang, because there were no guarantees that we would be there or be able to sing at the actual concert or worship service we were rehearsing for.

The entire Murray family has laughed with me,
(sometimes probably laughed AT me,)
cried with me,
prayed with me and for me,
rebuked me,
taught me,
encouraged me,
been a godly example for me to follow,
and loved me.

I will miss them all terribly, but I will be forever grateful for the many ways God used them to stretch me, grow me, and mature me in the faith.

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