Happy Birthday, Church!

In July of 1983, I made one of the most important decisions of my life: I became the husband of Kim Townsdin. Today, a little over thirty-five and a half years have passed, and life has taken us on a journey we could have never planned or predicted. One thing is sure, Crossings Community Church would not be what it is today were it not for her impact on my life and the life of our church. As we celebrated the 60th anniversary of our church, Kim made a list of people who have impacted her life.  With her permission, she is our guest blogger this week. I'm so excited for you to hear from her!  Enjoy!


A week ago, we celebrated the 60th anniversary of my church! It’s a sacred place. It’s a place which, outside of my family, has been the most consistent presence in my life for my entire life. It’s a place where God has used perfectly imperfect people to show me Jesus.

When I think about it, this church is special not because of a building or location, but because of the people God has brought together and equipped to do His work for 60 years. God has worked through these committed Christ followers to make this church strong enough and effective enough to last through the years and to change one little girl’s life.

It’s you, the ones who have answered God’s call to serve in this place through the years, who are the church to me! So...thank you!

Thank you for being the pastor who led my parents to Christ and set our family on a different path. I hope you know you affected the eternity of generations.

Thank you for being the volunteer who cared for me in the nursery. From my earliest memories, church was a loving place filled with people who cared about me.

Thank you for being the Sunday School teachers who used flannelgraph boards to teach me all the Bible stories. You brought the Bible to life for this little girl.

Thank you for being the worship pastor who gave me the opportunity as a young girl to sing and play the piano during Sunday night and Wednesday night services. You gave me a love for worship and validated that even children have gifts that can be used.

Thank you for being the elderly lady who had a ready supply of butterscotch candies in her coat pocket and offered them to anyone who wanted one. You showed me that we all can do something to show our love.

Thank you for being the sweet usher who called me “Miss America” every time he saw me. You made this 6-year-old feel valuable and like all things were possible.

Thank you for being the Sunday School teacher who sent me a note a few days after I accepted Christ to congratulate me. You validated the importance of that pivotal decision!

Thank you for being the VBS teacher who encouraged me to memorize all the books of the Bible, the 23rd Psalm, and the Ten Commandments in one week. I’ve never forgotten them.

Thank you for being the youth leader who poured into me. You took me to camps and youth conventions on buses that weren’t air conditioned and put up with too many shenanigans to mention. Your sacrifice was noticed and the fun you brought to my life helped me know that the Christian life is not boring.

Thank you for being my friend at camp, at youth group, in Sunday School. You showed me at a young age the beauty of community in a church.

Thank you for being a volunteer for a church work day where both kids and adults worked. I noticed your dedication and joy in serving. You taught me that there is value in taking care of God’s house and anything else he has entrusted to us.

Thank you for being the adult I looked up to because of your integrity and your walk with God. You lived out your faith and gave me a desire to do the same.

Thank you, church, for being home base as I went away to college. The spiritual foundation you laid and your influence stayed with me even then.

Thank you for being the search committee who hired a young 22-year-old graduate who would become my husband. You introduced me to one of the greatest gifts God has given me.

Thank you for being the nursery workers who took care of each of my babies. You gave me the opportunity to serve and worship and not worry one minute about the welfare of my child.

Thank you for being a children’s and youth leader and teaching my children. They grew up loving to come to church because of you.

Thank you for being a person who poured one-on-one time into each of my kids. You were an invaluable voice in their lives that helped them navigate life, discover their gifts, feel loved, and feel accepted.

Thank you for being the people who surrounded our family in our time of grief and loss when my dad was diagnosed with cancer and eventually passed away 16 months later. You were there with prayers, meals, notes, hugs, and unending encouragement. You showed me just how strong and supportive the body of Christ is.

Thank you for being the prayer team who has showed up on Saturday mornings to walk through and pray for the different rooms that were going to be filled with people on Sunday mornings. You have showed me week after week the power of prayer.

Thank you for being the lady who sent me a note of encouragement on a day I needed it. You showed me that when God puts someone on your mind, follow through and let them know you’re thinking of them.

Thank you for being the friend in my small group who challenges me and asks me the hard questions about how things are “really” going. Because you always lead with love, I know you have my best interest at heart and you consistently point me to Christ.

Thank you for being the leader who is so passionate about teaching the Word. Your enthusiasm and diligence is contagious! You have inspired me to never quit learning about God and how to live out his truths in my life.

Thank you for being the volunteer who says “Yes!” to help with a special event. Because of you, countless people have been welcomed and made to feel comfortable to come into a church –maybe for the first time.

Thank you for being the small group leader who cultivates a safe circle of friendship and accountability for others. Through you, I’ve learned the importance of connection and intimacy in a large church.

Thank you for being the worship leader who prayerfully plans and then leads a group in worship. Because of your sensitivity to the Holy Spirit, time after time I have encountered Christ in a powerful way.

I could go on and on, but I guess what I’m trying to say is thank you to the countless people who have signed up, showed up, walked with, prayed for, followed up, cooked for, given to, loved on, prepared for, sacrificed for, encouraged, taught, counseled, discipled, preached, led...all in the name of Jesus and his church.

God has used you to impact his Kingdom! The real beauty of church is that God wants to use each one of us. We all have a part to play in the body of Christ! Crossings, you have been an incredible example of that, and I am so grateful to have had the privilege to be a part of this beautiful community throughout my life!

Happy 60th!

-Kim Grubbs


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