January 14, 2022

What an honor and privilege now to be your pastor at Crossgate! And what an encouragement the installation service was last Sunday evening! As I said then my heart is full, and I am deeply humbled by your willingness for me to take on this role.
 
God has called us together into the gospel work that He has for us here at Crossgate. And I look forward to the future as God guides our steps and uses us to glorify his name. And while I have commented numerous times that I have big shoes to fill, there is also a strong foundation to stand on – a great history of a church built on the foundation of God’s Word, Christ Jesus himself the chief cornerstone.
 
Let me make two requests of you as I begin this new role. First, I hope you will take the opportunities to allow me get to know you better as your pastor. Having been here for more than two years, I am so glad to already know you as much as I do. And what a wonderful group of people God has brought together as the Crossgate church family! It is a joy to see your faces, catch up, and talk more each week. You mean so much to me already.
 
At the same time, I am aware that there is a deeper closeness and openness to develop in being your pastor – a level that wasn’t as much looked for or needed when Tom was here as your pastor but that can be felt more keenly now. There is so much more of your story that I have yet to hear, how God has worked in your past, your struggles and joys in the present, and your hopes for the future. You need your pastor to know you deeply, and I look forward to us developing that together.
 
Secondly, I want to encourage you to continue serving and using your gifts at Crossgate. This one body has many members and it is only when each part is working properly that the body grows, building itself up in love. I have been here long enough to know that there are a lot of parts that keep this ship moving and that I may not know even half of what each of you do. If you all were to suddenly stop and wait for specific direction from me, things would fall apart quickly. But I am encouraged by how well you love one another, meet the needs around you, study Scripture, reach out, draw others in, and seek out the opportunities God has give you. Let’s keep that going!
 
While I hope to strengthen and encourage you in your role and to further fan into flame the good work that God is doing in you, I want to remind you that at my installation, Crossgate did not become David’s church any more than it was Tom’s church previously. Crossgate has always been Christ’s church, as well as your church when God called you into it. Let’s each of us continue to honor God with the gifts He has given us. And if you are wondering how you can serve and be more involved, please consider this an invitation to jump right in, and know that I am glad to guide you and talk with you more.
 
Well, it has been a good “first week” in this new role, and I look forward to the weeks and years ahead serving the Lord together, depending on His grace, and continuing to grow true disciples!
 
In Christ,
David Story

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