Below is a letter that was sent yesterday to a number of people of which I have had the privilege of ministering with and to over the past seven years. The Lord has opened up an opportunity for our family to step out in faith in a new work. We will remain here in Fargo and we will be working with a team to plant a church here in the central part of town. Please feel free to contact us with questions after reading this post.
Soli Deo Gloria,
Friends of Bethel Church,
The Lord’s direction is clear, so Amy and I are taking a "leap of faith." We will be partnering with Brett Moser and his family to plant River City Church in the downtown area of Fargo beginning in September 2009. God has given us a heart for this city and although we will be stepping away from Bethel, we will remain engaged in ministry in Fargo.
I write these words with both grief and joy; grief for one reason and joy for two reasons. The grief comes because we have 7 years of ministry here in this place with students and young adults, and that has been no small thing. I came on staff as an intern with little experience. Over the past 7 years, I have been mentored and equipped for the ministry of the Gospel. We have seen many college students come though these doors and many of them equipped and sent back out to workplaces, churches, and mission fields half-way around the world! These are things we celebrate and hold dear. The relationships built, the time spent laughing and crying, all the intangible things… I cannot express enough my thankfulness to the Lord and to Bethel for my time here.
In the midst of grieving a change from Bethel College Director to "church planter," I find myself consumed with joy! We are excited for this new church and the people who will come to know Jesus in downtown Fargo! The challenge of the young/urban culture that is freely drifting and in need of Jesus is part of what inspires us to birth a fresh planting of the Gospel in that part of our city. We have a deep assurance that God has confirmed this direction for our family and cannot wait to see how He will work in our lives and the downtown community.
The second reason I write with great joy is that God is at work in shaping the ways in which Bethel will be able to more effectively make disciples among college students and serve as a mission outpost among the 25,000 college students in Fargo/Moorhead. We’ve laid some fantastic groundwork and I’m excited to see how Bethel will be impacting college students for years to come!
Amy and I celebrate that the partnership with Bethel in the mission of making disciples remains strong. I hear clearly from Bethel leaders and continue to feel the support from this body in commissioning and sending us out so that the Gospel of Jesus Christ will be heard and the Kingdom of God will expand for the sake of our city and for God’s glory.
It has been a joy serving in your midst and we look forward to serving along side of Bethel Church here in Fargo as part of River City Church.
Thank you for all your love and support!
In His Grip,
Jake & Amy Peterson