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  • Writer's pictureLyn Dyck

Reflections and Thank You!

My heart is full! On January 16 the EMMC General Board planned an evening of celebration for me. On a frigidly cold and blustery evening, I was surrounded by members of the General Board and Council, present and past staff of the EMMC Home Office, pastors and my family gathered at Altona EMMC. Even though I would have probably been most comfortable with a handshake or a hug as I walk out my office door, it was gratifying and humbling to hear words of thanks, of affirmations and encouragement. It was also fun to share the laughs as people remembered the past years of my involvement in the EMMC. My cheeks hurt!

Throughout the year I have been met with expressions of thanks, words of affirmation and encouragement. I have been truly blessed to have been welcomed into our family of churches and had the opportunity to roll up my sleeves together with so many of you Equipping, Encouraging and Empowering our churches in their God given ministries!

During the past few months, I’ve had the opportunity to connect with many of our churches and leaders, hearing reports of growth and excitement about new ministry opportunities and people coming to faith in Jesus. I'm going to miss that!

All this has put me into a reflective space as I write today, just a few days away from the end of my time after nearly 8 and a half years as Executive Director of the EMMC. Today it is causing me to reflect on how did this all come to be? I am grateful for the faith journey on which God has been taken me. It was not one where I thought I would be the Executive Director of a church denomination. Graduating from high school, I probably would have been voted “least likely...”. Although I was raised in a Christian home by parents who faithfully served in our church and was surrounded by siblings aspiring to be pastors, I was going on a different path. My teen years were filled with cars and motorcycles. I ended up falling away from my faith and my plans no longer included God. I planned to get a degree in Business and start a Harley-Davidson dealership! That was until I realized you need money to do that, and I didn’t have much.

My wife Jennifer came into my life and through her, God continued to pursue me, to shape me and to open my eyes to see people the way he wanted me to see people. Armed with a degree in Business, I started a 25-year career working in the finance industry. Cars and motorcycles are still part of life, but with a different priority.

Jennifer and I got involved in a Christian Biker ministry and youth leadership in our church. God eventually led me into church leadership in my late 20’s. It was during a time of healthy growth in the church, but also many changes, many opportunities to listen and to help people be reconciled with each other. I often felt inadequate as a young inexperienced guy. But I was mentored, discipled and blessed with a congregation that was gracious with me as I was learning to be the servant leader God was teaching me to be.

After about 10 years, in 2011, my church, the Altona EMMC asked me to take a role with the EMMC General Council. I began on the EMMC Finance Committee and soon began to learn about the greater ministry of the EMMC, about our churches in all regions and our ministries around the world.

I became the Vice-Moderator for the conference in 2013, and then a short time later I began to be asked to become the next Executive Director. That was finally the place where I thought people were crazy! God had been shaping me over time, shaping my journey, asking me to take my education and experience, and shape me to take on greater responsibilities within the EMMC conference. At times I saw it, and at times I didn’t want to see it. I ran from accepting that call for 2 years. As I deliberated, I came up with excuses in my conversations with God – letting Him know that I didn’t understand why a guy with a finance background would be asked to lead a family of churches.

As a family, we were trying to live in obedience to God’s call on our life. We had just become foster parents a couple of years before my conference involvement, while Jennifer and I were raising a family of two daughters. God had been nudging her heart to have us as a family enter this life-changing ministry. This was already a huge life change for us. Jennifer had quit her job as an educational assistant, which she loved by the way. And we gave ourselves to this ministry. A ministry we are tremendously blessed to be in this ministry to this day. Yet, the calling to be Executive Director didn’t stop, and I couldn’t help thinking, we were foster parents, wasn’t that ministry enough already? There had to be someone better out there. During a conversation Jennifer and I were having about holding myself back from this call, she reminded me that God promises in our weakness, he will be strong. 2 Corinthians 12:9-11 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Eventually I stopped running, and said “Here I am Lord, nothing perfect here, but if you can use me, I’ll go.” That was in September 2015. So even though for many of you, you’ve known of me as the Executive Director of the EMMC, doing this kind of work specifically was not what I originally planned to do. But God’s plans were different!

I wasn’t entirely sure what was all going to be involved. But I soon learned that for a time, God had called upon me to serve in this position using the passion he had given me, and the education and the experiences of those past 25 years, to serve him in this way.

Over the years I’ve had opportunity to bring clarity to our plans and purposes within the EMMC. Focusing on vision, challenging ourselves to understand the “why”, seeing the need for ourselves to be obedient to the Great Commission to be disciples who make disciples.

Relationships are a big deal to me. It is so evident in scripture; many times, we are told we have been given a ministry of reconciliation. We are called to be servants. Servant leaders.

Building relationships and building trust for me has meant spending time in our regions and in our churches over the years. I genuinely love and care for our churches and believe God has so much he wants us to do in this world, through our churches. But this has meant me spending time away from my family and the ministry we have at home. My family has often sacrificed time away for me to be of service to our family of churches. That hasn’t always been easy, because as much as I love this ministry, my ministry at home being called to be a husband and a dad is also a huge part of our life.

So, its been with mixed emotions that I checked in with our churches for the last time in this role, stepping away from a ministry that I’ve loved, knowing that I may not be in some regions in this way anymore. I will miss it and will miss many of you.

Having said that, I’m excited about where are churches are at. I’m excited about the opportunities ahead for our churches and ministries to be really seeing God moving! I’m excited that Terry Hiebert has agreed to be our Interim Executive Director and I’m excited to see who God is calling to be our next full-time Executive Director. After 8 and a half hears years, I’m ultimately, really excited to be home with my family, loving them, nurturing them to be who God is calling them to be. To be a marketplace missionary, and a support within my local church. What a cool calling that is to just be Lyn Dyck again!

May God bless you all as you follow our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, knowing that he may call you to places where you may not feel worthy or qualified, being reminded that he will give you what’s needed not for your glory but his, knowing he has called each of you to a purpose and calling unique to you!

Thank you to the EMMC family of churches, for always making me feel at home in your churches and your communities! I have been truly blessed! Thank you!


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