Last weekend we celebrated 25 years of being a church at Community Bible Church, but there was something else much harder for me to celebrate: the transitioning out of my direct leader, Chris Emmitt. If you don’t know, Chris is leaving his role as the Executive and Teaching Pastor at Community Bible Church to become the Lead Pastor of Mountain Lake Church in the North Atlanta area. It’s truly something to celebrate as this is an incredible opportunity for Chris and, in turn, CBC gets to send out a leader that we raised up to go and lead at the next level. In celebration is ideally how every leader should transition and there is no doubt that we all celebrate this move for Chris, Mountain Lake and CBC as we hope to raise up and send out more leaders in the short and long term future.
As I celebrate, I naturally look back on the past 5 years of locking arms in ministry. Chris and I met almost 7 years ago online at Rockbridge Seminary. About 6 years ago Chris called me and asked to go get coffee to discuss college/young adult ministry. From there we quickly became friends and eventually colleagues. Chris has been my direct leader at CBC from Day 1 and we have been through a lot together.
We launched Online Church together and he has helped me navigate and innovate around Online Church. We had the privilege of leading Two42 together reaching hundreds of Young Adults each week in and around the San Antonio area. Chris empowered me to lead in more strategic areas navigating a rebranding process, website development, and so many fun and exciting initiatives together. These past 5 years have been the most fruitful of my relatively short ministry career and I know that none of it would be possible without Chris’ great leadership guiding me every step of the way.
While I look back with great pride on the work that God allowed the two of use to do together, these aren’t the memories that I will remember most. Chris has not only been my boss, but he’s also become one of my best friends. We have shared countless cups of coffee together and many $5 footlongs. At least I think he ate a sandwich. His was usually already gone/inhaled by the time I got to the table. Over these 5 years we simply shared life together. There is no doubt that I will miss my friend when I come back to San Antonio but, even still, I cannot help but celebrate this move for he and his family.
Mountain Lake Church, you are getting a dynamic preacher, visionary leader and a man who is mature beyond his years. He will lead you well, love you well and serve you well. I pray that in the coming years that you appreciate Chris, love he and his family and continue to support his leadership and the vision that God puts on his heart as your leader. I know that God has great plans ahead for your church and know that you will be extremely blessed by your new pastor, Chris Emmitt.
Chris, thank you for your leadership, your trust, your passion, your sarcasm, your understanding, and most of all your friendship. It's been an honor and a blessing.