Dave's Ministerial Musings for December 2015

By Rev. David Wilson Rogers |  November 26, 2015

         It is hard to believe that 14 years have come and gone since I first set foot in the pulpit of this wonderful congregation. In many ways it has been the best 14 years of my life! In these 14 years we have been through a lot together—some of it celebratory and joyous, some of it not so much fun.
         We do not look the same as we did 14 years ago. Many former members are no longer with us. Some have moved out of town, some to other churches, and the vast majority to be with our Savior in heaven. Not only that, many of the people who are part of our beautiful family of faith now, were not here when I came 14 years ago.
The past 14 years we have grown together in wonderful and powerful ways. We’ve shared in amazing ministries together and learned from one another. This church has made me a much better pastor and preacher. I have rejoiced in sharing powerful insights and wisdom through teaching, preaching, and leading in the life of this congregation.
At times we have not always agreed; yet for all of us here today, we understand that our shared love of Jesus Christ is far more important than points of theological disagreement or differences of opinion regarding what is appropriate, proper, or acceptable.  All in all, it has been a wonderful learning and growing opportunity for me—one that I am thankful to God that I have had over these years.
We have demonstrated great faith together. On occasions, our light has shined brightly for Christ in Carlsbad. We may be a little church, but we have been far from an irrelevant church. We’ve set new standards for Relay for Life, remained the lead congregation for Beans and Rice, we’ve helped make the CROP Walk an annual mission for our community, we have opened our doors and our ministry to countless individuals in need of wholeness, healing, and the blessing of God’s love, we’ve provided a means for people to seal their love in God’s blessing through the ministry of Christian marriage, and we’ve stood for a viable, relevant, and powerful expression of genuine  Christian faith and action for this community. With God’s help, we have done all this to the glory of God’s Holy Name.
Truly, there is a lot to celebrate and nothing can take away from this congregation the amazing legacy we have left in Carlsbad together. Starting 111 years ago in the First Presbyterian Church building, a few faithful and visionary women meeting for prayer and Bible study gathered enough money to purchase a lot and finance our first building. The small wood-frame structure is now long gone, but it stood where the Yellow Brix restaurant now is. In the 1920’s we outgrew that small church and built a new building at Alameda and Hagerman. This building, which is now the home of Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church was our home until 1958 when our current building was opened.
In the years since 1958 we have seen this building bursting at the seams and also suffered a devastating church split. Many have come and gone, but our building has served us well. Yet now, we are looking at the possibility of another move. As with our pervious moves, it is a move rooted in how best we can provide mission and remain a vital presence for Jesus Christ in our community. The decisions are not going to be easy, but we must follow this powerful leading of God’s Holy Spirit and see where God is taking us! I am glad to be on this journey with you and look forward to at least 14 more years of Wonderful ministry!