Sunday, December 4, 2011

Merry Christmas from the Butson's on the pacific coast

             Every Christmas season presents us with an appropriate reason to thank all of our wonderful friends and family that have been so gracious and loving throughout the year. Kate and I want to let you know how blessed we are to have you in our lives! Thank you for your support, your encouragement, and your prayers.
As we conclude 2011, we recall what a year it has been. As many of you know, in the middle of the year, Bell Shoals Baptist Church presented me with an opportunity to be mentored and serve as the pastoral intern for a year. Though this wasn’t really even on our radar a year ago, Kate and I both knew this was of the Lord. Prior to the move back to Tampa, Katie and I were finally getting rooted in our lives in North Carolina. Katie worked many different jobs all across the Triangle and by the end of our stay found an incredible job just five minutes away from our home. During my time of schooling, Katie has been such an amazing partner in ministry and provider for our home. While in school, I had the great privilege to serve as the youth pastor of Antioch Baptist Church in Chapel Hill. In this position, I had the opportunity to see many people come to know the Lord as Savior and follow through in believer’s baptism. Though we missed family and friends back home, our time in Raleigh was an incredibly sweet time for spiritual and marital growth, and nothing can really beat a spring season in Raleigh!
In August, we began a new chapter of our lives, in a new home, back in Brandon, Florida. Since moving, we have been able to reconnect with so many great friends and family. We are known around these parts as “Uncle Dee-Dee” and “Aunt Kee-Kee” by our joyful twin nephews. Though we have yet to change any poopie diapers, we are enjoying our new roles in the family. Katie is a stylist at Studio 3 Salon  with a great group of women, who she adores.  She has the honor of serving with the Lion’s Club as the Festival Liaison for the Strawberry Queen Scholarship Pageant. She is definitely soaking up her time in Plant City with friends and family for as long as the Lord would have us here.
Beyond June of next year, I will have completed the Masters in Divinity from Southeastern Baptist Theological seminary and my one year pastoral internship. From that point, we are again open to what the Lord would have us do. Though starting a church is a fire burning within our hearts, we are  open to anything the Lord has for us! We know that we will be cherishing our Christmas here with family and friends. This season, we pray that Christ’s love would become abundantly clear to you and that it would spur you on to fulfill His work! Everything I mentioned about what we have been able to do this year is in light of such a good God that we serve and the great people that have supported us along the way. Each of you has had a profound influence in our testimony and we are very thankful for you!

Continued Blessings this Christmas Season,

Daniel and Katie