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How Can I Say Thanks for the Things You Have Done for Me

From the Cluttered Desk... December 12, 2004 Volume 50, Edition 50
YEARS AGO, Andre Crouch wrote the song, “To God Be the Glory, for the things He has done...” It’s one of my all time favorite Christian songs because it describes how I feel. TRUTH did a song, “So Far, So Good” that sums up my life and walk with God. “We have come so far, You have been so good, on the road that we have traveled, I’ve got to tell You Lord. I look at where we are and see where I could have been, I need to say again, You’ve been so good, who would have guessed that we would come so far.” These songs summarize my life, my feelings and my thoughts today.

HOW CAN I SAY THANKS in an adequate way for being able to serve this church for the last fifteen years? I thank God for all He has done, for the people who have come into the Kingdom, for the willingness to follow the Pastor, for people who did not let the size of the city limit the size of their vision. We’ve broken all the rules, gotten outside the box, done the HIMpossible and God has been glorified. None of this would have been possible without a people of prayer, faith and vision. Thank you.

HOW CAN I SAY THANKS for the privilege of serving alongside such great staff and deacons? They have seen me (more than others) at my worst and still been willing to follow. I count it a privilege to serve here and to lead these teams as we continue to take new ground for the Kingdom.

HOW CAN I SAY THANKS for a church family that has loved us, taught our daughters the things of God, prayed for us, walked with us through the death of three parents, held me up as I dealt with the issue of finding out about my adoption at age 39? You’ve been patient, kind, understanding, and loving. You’ve let me be me and not put me on a pedestal or had unreasonable expectations for me or my family. Thank you.

HOW CAN I SAY THANKS for the way you honored us on our fifteenth anniversary. The letter from President Bush. The letter from Lt. Governor Mark Taylor. The new chair for my study. I sat in a similar chair two years ago and have wanted one ever since. It’s one I could not afford and absolutely the most comfortable office chair I’ve ever seen. Thanks to the Deacons for the 509th book signed by Paul Tibbetts, who my dad served with in WWII. Thanks for the monetary gift. Thanks to all the deacon chairmen for the video tribute. Finally, and most of all the establishing of the Michael Catt Scholarship at the University of Mobile. I was stunned and that’s an understatement. To know that we will be able to make a perpetual investment in the training of a young person going into ministry until Jesus comes is beyond my ability to comprehend. Thanks to the ordained staff and directors for the three framed Bible pages. There was a leaf from the original 1791 First Edition of the Isaac Collins Bible: the first family Bible printed in America, a leaf from one of the earliest printings of the original King James Bible printed between 1614 and 1649 in England, and a leaf from one of the earliest printings of the famous Geneva Bible printed between the 1560’s and 1644.

THE RECEPTION was incredible. The food, the cheesecakes (enough to go around...now that’s the sign of a great church - cheesecake for everyone), the ice sculpture. Wow. Thanks for all your kind words, hugs and encouragement.

FROM THE bottom of our hearts, Terri and I say thanks. I could not have done it without you or her. She’s been my stabilizer and support. You’ve been there for us through it all. You are our family, our joy. We thank God upon every remembrance of you. We’ve come a long way since 1989, you and me. God has been so good. We’ve traveled a road with ups and downs, victories and defeats. We’ve reached for the sky and hit bottom. Through it all, we’ve learned to trust in Jesus. He’s always seen us through. His hand is on this place. His presence is in this place.

Michael and Terri ©

LETTER from PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH
Congratulations on 15 years of ministry at Sherwood Baptist Church. This milestone is a tribute to your many years of dedication and service.

Our Nation has always benefited from a strong foundation. The celebration of faith continues to be central to the lives of Americans, offering strength, hope, and guidance to people across our country. By sharing God’s teachings, you have helped to enrich lives and have served as an inspiration to your church and your community. I commend your work to share the message of God’s love and boundless mercy with others.

Laura joins me in sending our best wishes on this special occasion.
- George Bush ©

LETTER from LT. GOVERNOR MARK TAYLOR
It is a pleasure to commend you on fifteen years of service to Sherwood Baptist Church. Congratulations!

Thanks to your stewardship, Sherwood Baptist has become the backbone of Albany. The church has enriched the lives of countless parishioners through inspirational ministry, thoughtful leadership and wise counsel. The Sherwood Baptist family has contributed immeasurably to the community and has inspired countless others to follow in your footsteps of service and selflessness. On a personal note, Sherwood Baptist is an integral part of my life, and I hope we are blessed enough to have you at the helm for many years to come. You have been an important member of the Taylor family, and I cannot thank you enough for what you have meant to all of us.

On behalf of the state of Georgia, I want to again wish you congratulations on such a momentous milestone. I am pleased that your years of service to all of us are being publicly recognized. I hope that fifteen years is only the beginning.
- Mark Taylor ©

LETTER from DAN CARTER, Christian Coalition Vice President Governmental Affairs
It is hard to believe it has been fifteen years since you left Ada to come to Sherwood. I am thankful to God that He allowed me to be on the committee that talked to you. It is clear to me that the Lord had His hand on the entire proceedings. We all had a peace about recommending you to the church. The Lord has used you in a mighty way through the years, but I truly believe your best days of ministry and those of Sherwood are yet to come.

I count you as a dear friend and I congratulate you and Sherwood together for what God has accomplished through your ministry.
– Dan ©