In my last two trips to the States, Austin has always been my first stop for ministry. I really enjoyed my time down there, not only because the weather is warmer and the food is incredible, but more importantly because I am able to reconnect with Pastor Ben and his family.
Pastor Ben was in Ann Arbor back in 1996, as a graduate student when HMCC of Ann Arbor first got started. It is hard to believe that we have a long 13+ year history together. It is a joy just to see how God has developed him as a husband, father, and pastor.
I have been privileged to see HMCC of Austin first get planted back in 2008. Then with various visits along the way, I have seen the development of the church. After this trip, I can confidently say that God is doing some great things down in Austin. I was able to meet some people who recently came to know Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Also, I had lunch with a couple of people who were asked to be part of their leadership team for next year. Whenever you are able to raise up your own leaders, it is a sign of health.
Even though, things have not gone according to our timetable, I definitely see God at work and bringing forth His plan to fruition.
Here are some lessons that I was reminded with in my time at Austin:
2) God teaches us how to depend on Him by not working according to our timetable.
3) God reminds us that it is not about us, but more about His glory and honor.
4) We cannot try to force things, but rather we have to trust in God for the results.
5) The signs of health in a church are: people coming to Christ, leaders are being raised up, and people are passionate about sharing the Gospel.
6) Humility and teachability are important traits of a disciple.
7) Texas has the best beef briskets in the world!
I am excited to see all that God is going to do in the weeks, months and years to come. Already there are clear signs that God is doing some great things. The best is yet to come in Austin.