This week I have completed seventeen years of ministry at Findlay First as the lead pastor. What a journey it has been. My heart is full of love for the people of this church and our community. I remember when I was first called by Dr. Fairbanks to consider coming for an interview. My first thought was that I was content with where I was and that the Lord was continuing to use us where we were. I told Vickie that I thought my love for Shelby County was increasing. Her response to me was, “Why couldn’t your love for the people of Hancock County increase as well?” I guess she told me. So we decided to just come and interview.
During the interview, the Lord showed up in a powerful way and we knew that we were to come to Findlay. After preaching at a service during the week and fellowshipping with the people, Vickie was right. God placed the people of Findlay, Ohio on my heart. I specifically remember traveling home and wondering how we were going to tell the people of Sidney that God was calling us to another church. It was like mourning a death.
Sure enough, the next day, Dr. Fairbanks called and said that they wanted to continue in the process of calling us to come and be their pastor. After a few weeks and the congregation voted, we started our transition to Findlay, Ohio.
It is mind boggling to think of the many changes and how much we have all grown in the faith. I will be forever grateful for the love this church has shown to my family through the years. Vickie and I will celebrate 30 years of marriage on Monday and to think that we spent more than half of it with the great people of Findlay First Church of the Nazarene. Thank you for loving my family and helping me to raise my children.
It is fun to look at pictures of people and renovations over the years. What a fun journey it has been. Just think, in some respects, we have just begun. I am looking forward to many more years of growing to be more like Jesus with Findlay First Nazarene. Let me close with a prayer the Apostle Paul prayed for a church he was a part of.
15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church,23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way. Ephesians 1:15-23
Have a blessed day today and may the Lord open up doors you have been praying for.
Joy in Jesus!
Rev. Mike McClurg
Senior Pastor, Findlay First Church of the Nazarene