Newsletter / Issue 29, March 2016

Looking Back

"I do not cease to give thanks for you…"

By Ben Deaver

Rear View Mirror

What you’re reading now is a launch of a brand new web-based version of our New Hope NEWS. We’ve revamped the name to something much, much more exciting. Wait for it… Drum roll please… It’s my privilege and honor to be the first to introduce to you…New Hope Newsletter! 

Exciting, right? We thought we’d just call it what is and keep it simple. Plus, the name “New Hope NEWS” no longer worked because we have a NEWS section on our website and that could get quite confusing since our NEWS wasn’t the same as our New Hope NEWS. So, New Hope Newsletter it is. It continues to be our hope that this quarterly-ish publication be chock full of high quality articles and pertinent info and highly valued by our church body.  Happy reading!  

Paul often gives thanks for those to whom he writes. I want to do the same now. I’d love to look back together with gratitude on how God has provided for our church family since last summer.

I’m struck by how often Paul often gives thanks to God for so many different people. Gratitude is often hard to come by, especially in our culture where we have so much but often expect so much more. To cultivate a grateful heart requires stopping long enough to remember people and what God is doing in their lives and through their lives for His good purposes. There are many specific people that I’d love to reflect on together with great gratitude to God and to them for their faithfulness:

  • First, thank you, Tony Classen, for leading the Pastor Search Team and Elder Team through a significant year in the life of New Hope. You carried a heavy burden for our church for a long time. 
  • Thank you, Pastor Search Team, for stepping in to a daunting role (i.e. 150+ applicants). You sought God together and made tough decisions as needed. Thanks also to your families for the role they played alongside you.
  • Thank you, fellow Elders, for leading in so many unseen ways this past year. Those weekly early morning prayer times and monthly longer meetings (and occasional much longer meetings like the five our budget meeting that went past midnight…remember that?) were important contexts to hear from God and move our church forward together. Not to mention the countless email and text threads.  
  • Thank you, Rudy Mills, for stepping into the role of Point Leader for KidsLIFE for close to a year in addition to serving on the Elder Team and as a LIFE Group leader. Our children have continued to learn about Jesus and get to know Him better personally through KidsLIFE. Many families chose to land in New Hope this past year and KidsLIFE was a significant factor in many of those decisions. Rudy has also stepped into the role that Tony had on the Elder Team in helping us move forward with agenda items during our meetings. 
  • Thank you, Nate Dillon, for all the countless hours you’ve spent building our new and amazing website and in particular building this new Newsletter section.  Thanks also to Jermaine for the indirect sacrifice you’ve made as Nate spends time at home working on this.  
  • Thank you, fellow New Hope Staffers, for faithfully laboring in the day to day operations to help New Hope pursue relationships that change the world. We all faced uncertainty together and have persevered together to an exciting new season in the life of our church. I’m so thankful that our entire Staff Team is thrilled about the dynamic of our new Staff Team!
  • Thank you, Dick and Nancy Jaques, for responding to the Spirit’s prompting to apply for the role of Lead Pastor at New Hope Church. We are thrilled to have you not only lead in a vital role in New Hope but also be a part of our church family. In case you missed it, listen to Dick and Nancy talk about this process from their perspective here ( 

If you get an opportunity, please take some time to thank these brothers and sisters for their role in what God’s been up to in and through New Hope this past year.

Finally, thank you, New Hope Church, for your resiliency through transition! Words that come to mind when I think about our church family over the last couple years are faithfulness, servant-heartedness, graciousness, togetherness, unity, tested, hospitable, generous, moxie, and stick-to-itiveness. I could enumerate more poignant words to describe the corporate character I see God forming in our church body but I’ll stop right there. We ended 2015 with $19,000 more being given than we had budgeted for. That’s huge, especially in the midst of transition! Thanks for your growth in gracious generosity. We have plenty to trust God for moving forward so keep growing, keep growing.

To catch glimpses of what God has been up to in and through New Hope since 2008 go back and peruse our quarterly editions of our New Hope NEWS. They are all available online (previous editions currently available in PDF form).  As we have time going forward, we will begin to convert all our previous editions of the New Hope NEWS to this new web format.  So check back often!  Of course God is always up to much more than we can see or imagine. The last New Hope NEWS was the 28th Edition and came out on May 29, 2015. Check it out here (