If you are a regular reader or follower of my blog, you may have noticed that I have not blogged as regularly as I used to. The past two weeks have been spiritually challenging for me and Rhonda. We have been struggling over whether or not to close River Ridge.

While living in Orlando and seeking God’s will about planting a church, Rhonda emphatically stated that failure was not an option. Well, I guess it’s the way you define failure. Yes, River Ridge has closed. It is no longer a church plant. We are no longer gathering for worship. Did we make mistakes? Yes. Could we have done things differently or better? Sure. Were there many factors that led to River Ridge closing? Most certainly.

So, was River Ridge a failure? Absolutely not! In our short history several people who were not pursuing an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ are today. Many of them are serving in leadership positions in other churches. Rhonda and I obeyed God when we left Orlando by faith to start River Ridge in Douglasville, GA. Anytime we obey God, we are successful. And best of all, people trusted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

Right now, we are not sure what we are going to do. I am starting a job with Protection One Security later this month to pay the bills. Will I be involved in another church plant as the lead pastor? Not without a staff of at least 3 other guys. Will I join another church planting team? I’m open to it (if they’ll have me!). Are we going to move back to central Florida to start a new church? You never know.

I guess what I’m saying is that we don’t know what we’re going to do right now. Rhonda and I are excited about the future. We have learned a lot about ourselves and church planting. This journey has been the most challenging thing I have ever done. I am glad I did it, and look forward to the next adventure God has planned for us!

4 Comments on It’s Official

  1. Andygoswick says:

    We’re so glad we were part of something so spectacular. We have no regrets, met a lot of new friends and God allowed them to walk into our lives for a season; to help us, to challenge us and to love us. The Goswick family is behind you guys and we love you. Thank you so so much for involving us on that journey so we’ll have another chapter in our lives. A chapter we wouldn’t have if it wasn’t for you guys! Christ tells us in His word do ALL things to glorify Him and I believe RRC has done just that!! Thank you God for RRC!!

  2. robinedmonds says:

    I am a firm believer that nothing happens by accident. There is a reason River Ridge was started and there is a reason River Ridge closed. I will say my life is better because of it. My walk with God is stronger after being a part of River Ridge. I met some new friends. I have broke out of my shell some I am no longer as shy as I once was, still shy but not has bad. Sam you and Rhonda are in my prayers. I love you too I would love to stay in touch.

  3. Deb says:

    I’m one of those who came to pursue a much more intimate relationship with Jesus as a result of River Ridge. The importance of these life stories cannot be underestimated. I believe God had a purpose to affect the lives that He did through River Ridge. Only God knows exactly how lives were affected and the ripple effects that those touched lives themselves have had. I know I’ve seen some awe-inspiring effects, just in my sphere of influence.

    Thank you so much for what you and Andy have done. And also, to the other River Ridge partners and friends. I’ve seen so many special moments, some subtle and some much bigger. Things I’ve mentioned and many things I haven’t, but that have touched me to the core.

    My love to all those who have been a part of River Ridge,

    Deb

  4. cmckinley says:

    Sam,

    I wish you and Rhonda the best on this journey. Even though Amber and I left River Ridge to Help another church plant there were many valuable lessons learned while we were there. River Ridge served it’s purpose and there is no doubt in my mind that God has a plan for you. You brought the word of God to many who did not know it before and enriched the lives of so many others and for that I am thankful.