Open Letter from:
Dale & Angela Marthick and Living Hope Church
Hi church family and friends,
For some time, Angela and I have been sensing the nudging, and call, of God toward a different direction in our lives. We are all on a journey with Him, and we want to be always open to His plans and timing. It has been a lengthy journey to arrive where we are today, and it is with some nervousness, sadness and yet excitement mixed with a steady conviction, that we want to share what we believe our Heavenly Father is leading us into.
Earlier this year we began to believe that it was God’s will for us to transition out of the leadership of Living Hope and to focus more on translocal ministry as the Holy Spirit opens doors for us to walk through. We still desire to serve our local church with Living Hope remaining our base and our home. We have no intentions of moving away! We love our church family.
There are elements of sadness, and a bit of frustration, at not being able to communicate this face-to-face, on a Sunday, together with you all as a church family. We are presently living in very difficult times as you are all well aware.
We travelled up from Tassie 18 years ago and planted Lifehouse Church, that combined with Wollondilly Life Church 10 years ago to become Living Hope. It started in our lounge with the adults going to a bedroom for the sermon because there were more kids than adults!
It has been an exciting, painful, joyous, tough, and rewarding journey. Today, we have a great core group of people in our church family, 11 deacons serving in various capacities, and a strong team of 5 eldership couples serving Christ together. Advancing the Kingdom for our King.
After some time away in the Snowy Mountains in June spent resting, praying and fasting, we settled in our hearts that it was His will and timing for us to start this process of transition.
Since informing our eldership team we have worked through who we believe is the right couple to take on the leadership of Living Hope and believe that that is Ruben and Jayde. To quote Acts 15:28 “it seems good to the Holy Spirit and us” that this is the way He wants us to go.
Ruben and Jayde both believe they have the call of God on their lives for this leadership role. We have included the NCMI team in this process from the beginning and they support the directions we are all headed as well.
I love Philippians 1:1 that speaks of the saints, elders and deacons “together with” the apostolic team, (in our case NCMI), progressing the Kingdom of God for King Jesus in friendship and partnership. We are well positioned for God’s future for us, so long as we keep our eyes on Jesus.
In the past year we have been personally financially blessed by the Lord and are in a position to relinquish most of our wage initially, thus making room to bring Ruben on full time in the next few weeks.
I will continue to lead Living Hope initially with Ruben increasingly taking on my responsibilities until, at some point in the future, the lead elder’s role will transition officially from me to Ruben. Ruben and Jayde will become the lead couple of Living Hope Church! We expect this to be next year, in 2021, at a specific date we have not fully settled on yet.
Once Ruben takes on the lead elder’s role, we will spend quite a bit of time out of the church allowing Ruben and Jayde time to settle into their new role.Next year, God willing and Covid restrictions allowing, we have long service leave from July for several months.
We all have individual journeys in our lives and Living Hope has a collective journey in God as well. We see this as a step into the next phase of Living Hope’s journey and are excited by the possibilities that come with these changes.
To me it is a blessing to have a “son and daughter from the house,” who have the same heart, that know us personally, taking on the leadership of Living Hope. I’m looking forward to be supporting Ruben and Jayde as they, together with the eldership team, lead Living Hope forward!
Please pray for us as we have “never walked this way before” (Joshua 3:4) and need continued godly wisdom for the path ahead.
Angela and I will be visiting the young adults and ladies groups this/next week and hosting two open homes at 7pm on Wednesday 30th and Thursday 1st in place of our other groups.
This is so that we can share, in person, more around this transition and answer any questions you may have and to pray into it. (People will need to register with Dale due to Covid restrictions for these 2 nights starting from now on 0433 176 734).
Dale & Angela