Many of you are waiting on pins and needles (we had multiple messages/missed calls on our cellphones all weekend to prove it!) to hear how our visit with Forest Park Baptist Church in Randleman, NC went this weekend. We're happy to say it was a huge success!
We reached Randleman after a very easy hour and a half drive from Raleigh. We got there early enough to drive by the church to see it! We spent most of Saturday getting to know Jon and Julie, the head pastor and his wife, and their family. Later in the afternoon, Matt met with Jon and the search committee for the final interview while Julie and I ordered pizza and got stuff for salads and sundaes ready in the fellowship hall.
The church building is a bit bigger than we expected and beautiful! I especially love the huge cross on the front, which is actually made of white bricks laid into the brick building's wall. We both got a full tour of all the classrooms and offices, nursery, and sanctuary. Saturday evening we enjoyed the pizza with a group of the youth and their parents... Matt got the chance to preach (it's my fault we don't have a picture, we meant to take one!) and then the group got the chance to ask us some questions. On Sunday we enjoyed a full day of services. Matt started at the men's prayer breakfast at 8:30, then a church prayer time, then Sunday school, and the worship service. Looks like I'll have to learn to go to bed on time on Saturday nights! We met more of the church members after the service, and then went to lunch with Jon and Julie, the kids, and Julie's brother. Julie and I jumped on the chance to talk the guys into eating at Cracker Barrel... she claimed she was indulging my pregnant cravings, I claimed I was trying to be easy to get along with to the hostess of the trip. I will admit Cracker Barrel's food is about 100 times better when you've been craving it this long!
We'll be driving back down on June 29th for the church members to have another chance to get to know us, and for their final vote. We are so excited that God has provided FPBC to us, meeting all the "stipulations" we put on Him! It is still near enough that we will get to see our families in Raleigh, we got along very well with the rest of the staff, and we feel like it is a place we can grow and serve these precious families and their youth who are in need of their own leadership. I can't think of a single way the members of this church could have been more welcoming or hospitable. While it's normal to be nervous about a move and a big change right before the already big change of baby B arriving, we are trusting God that he sees the big picture of where we are and where he wants us to be. Thank you all for your prayers, and big thank you to FPBC for such a great weekend!