a new ministry for the butler family

The following letter will be mailed out today, Monday, June 4, to the members of First Baptist Church, Hendersonville, North Carolina. I’ll be posting more about our journey to this point in the days ahead. In the meantime, know that we are certain of God’s hand in leading us in this direction and are eager to see what God has in store for both First Baptist Church and Istrouma Baptist Church. A link to the Istrouma website can be found here. The letter is below.

June 4, 2012

Dear First Baptist Church Family, As the Word tells us, to everything there is a season. Chapters of our lives are read and pages turned. It seems that once again God is writing a new verse in our own manuscript. Because of His clear leading and guidance, with a torn heart but a clear spirit, I hereby give my resignation as the Associate Pastor of Worship of First Baptist Church effective Sunday, July 1, 2012.

For the past six and a half years, God has blessed me with the privilege of serving this great congregation. The journey Christi, Ivi Grace and I have walked with you is something we will always cherish. Furthermore, I cannot convey enough how pleased we have been with the steps of faith this church has taken time and again to reach Hendersonville, our country and world with the gospel of Jesus Christ. What a blessing it has been to be part of the legacy of this great lighthouse.

My family and I will be returning to Baton Rouge, Louisiana to serve at a dynamic fellowship of believers called Istrouma Baptist Church. Yesterday, Sunday, June 3, I was called as their Associate Pastor of Worship. As you know, Christi and I have deep roots in the Baton Rouge area, so this a return home. Both of our parents and surviving grandparents live there as well as extended family and friends. We are also excited for the chance for Ivi Grace to grow up knowing her relatives more intimately, especially with her continuing health concerns. Even more than a return home, this is a call to a new ministry that has been more clear than any we have ever felt or seen. Even though we were not looking to leave you, who has become so dear to us, God has moved in the hearts of me, my wife and Istrouma Baptist Church to make it crystal clear that this is His will. In fact, our initial response was reluctance, because we had no desire to leave this church and city we have come to love so much.

Thank you for sharing in what have been the sweetest years of ministry thus far for us. We love this church family deeply. We leave certain that we are better for knowing you, and pray, in some small way, you feel the same. 

Gordon Butler
Associate Pastor | Worship