May 20, 2022LOVING THE JOURNEY WITH…Pastor John


Worst Kept Secret Ever

The worst kept secret in the history of Journey Christian Church has finally been publicly revealed. Last Sunday I announced that I will be stepping aside as Lead Pastor of Journey at the end of this year and Dustin Aagaard will be our next Lead Pastor starting January 1, 2023.

The fact that Pastor Dustin will be my successor surprised no one. If you’ve been around Journey for the past four years and paying attention at all, you probably have noticed that Dustin has steadily increased in the number of Sundays he’s preaching and in his leadership voice while I decrease in both. That’s how a good leadership transition is supposed to work. The man Jesus called the best that humanity has to offer, John the Baptist, said when people that used to flock to him, started following Jesus: “He must increase; I must decrease.” If our goal really is to glorify Jesus Christ above all else, then, following that principle, it is healthy and right for Dustin to increase and for me to decrease in the days ahead.

If there was any surprise at all in my announcement, it would be in the timing of my exit from the Lead Pastor role at the end of this year. I understand how people could think that it is happening quickly, but when you understand that what was announced last Sunday was part of an intentional process that started years ago, it makes a lot more sense.

The best thing you can do is go to our Transition webpage on the Journey Christian website:

This webpage is all about telling the story of how we got here. From the timeline of how this came about, to the FAQ’s, to the Sunday messages on the weekends of May 15 and 22–this is the place where you can get all of your questions answered about Journey’s succession process.

This Sunday, Pastor Dustin will join me for the second part of our family talk that we started last week. Together, he and I will share our thoughts about the process and the timing of how this unfolded. I really hope you can be with us in person and if that is not option, then please plan to join us online.

We are now officially in a season of succession at Journey, which is something that has never been done in the 53-year history of Journey Christian Church. Oh, there have been many pastors that have come and gone at Journey over the last 53 years–some left on their own and some didn’t–but we’ve never had an intentional, deliberate, planned succession from one outgoing Lead Pastor to the next.

However, this transition is not so much about grieving the loss of a leader or cheering for the next guy as it is about fulfilling a mission: the mission of making more and deeper disciples of Jesus that love God, love people and serve the world, remembering that leaders will come and go, but Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. Jesus still saves, the Holy Spirit still empowers, and the Father is still faithful. That is the hope from our Savior regardless of who is at the helm for a season.

Loving the transition Journey,

Pastor John