A message to all our friends…. we are leaving Woodseats Baptist Church

way-forwardAt a meeting a few days ago with Ben Hudd (leader of WBC), Merle and I concluded that this is the right time to leave WBC.

There has been a series of prophetic words from many people, including Isobel Alum, who visited WBC earlier in the year, many of the people in the church, and other sources in the UK and beyond, that we should move on for the next level of our training in heart and character. Also, great thanks to whomever placed an anonymous letter in my daybook with some wonderfully accurate words for me, which I found at just the right time.

On top of all these prophetic words are our own words and pictures from listening for ourselves and praying to the Lord over the last few months. The debate has always been about timing.

As Ben gets on with the task of creating the new WBC, we feel the right thing to do is create the space for this and look for the next adventure for Merle and myself. We have asked Ben to release us from WBC, and initially Ben wanted to do this at a Sunday morning service but quickly decided the right way would be at the next family weekend in September.

One of my favourite sayings is, “The Christian life consists of two simple things: learning to hear God clearly and developing the courage to do what he tells you” This, I think, is from Bill Hybels. It is advice we are now following.

When we left our previous church (Meadowhead Christian Fellowship), I expected to stay at WBC for many years, but I can see now that God has other plans for Merle and me. We had been at MCF for 13 years, and it was quite a wrench to leave. We have been a year at WBC, and it is less of a wrench – we feel we had only just started settling in before being called to the “departure gate”.

We have had a great year as part of the church and leave behind many great memories, including:

– our trip to Uganda together (Ben and I)
– our trip to Canada
– praying for Ben when he was very ill and unable to breathe, and seeing the breakthrough we needed
– all the wonderful stories of what God has been doing to change people and prepare them for the coming revival.

To our friends at WBC we want to say it has been a privilege and humbling experience for us to share in your journey. We are sure that God is at work at WBC and has astonishing plans for all of you – as well as for other Christians in churches across the city.
Please pray for us and for Ben.

For the Kingdom
Ian and Merle