A Letter From Johnny

Rev. Johnny Muller – Letter of Resignation from DFBC, Sunday, April 2, 2017

It was Michael French and Mike Barbee who initially got you all in trouble for the past seven plus years!!!  Michael had remembered me from February 2006 when I preached a “Breakout Revival” for DFBC.  He contacted Dr. Johnny Rumbough, the DOM (Director of Missions) for the LBA (Lexington Baptist Association) to investigate my availability for pulpit supply beginning with the 2nd Sunday in September 2009.  I was employed with the LBA beginning on January 16, 2006, as the Director of Leadership Development, following my retirement from the active pastorate after serving as senior pastor at First Calvary Baptist Church for 27 years in the LBA.  In 2009 Mike Barbee was elected as Chairman of Deacons for DFBC and was serving in that capacity in January 2010.  He contacted Dr. Johnny Rumbough about my serving as your Interim Pastor.  Of course, Dr. Rumbough approved and you so graciously called me and Mrs. Roma on Sunday, January 17, 2010, with open arms of love, support and your powerful prayers to serve as your senior pastor and wife with you while ministering from the pulpit of this great church.
In the ensuing months of 2010, Tim French, another one of those French boys, was serving as the Chairperson for your Pastor Search Team.  We built a special bond and he, prayerfully and aggressively, with the team pursued the search for your new pastor. Little did we all realize that God in His timing would call me and Mrs. Roma to be DFBC’s pastor and wife and on January 16, 2011, God again spoke through your hearts and you graciously called us to serve you.   
Bonds have been created and unbreakable relationships have been fostered and formed that we could never have conceived of when we followed the Lord to come here to serve alongside you as your interim and then part-time bi–vocational senior pastor.  As you know, we didn’t choose this for ourselves but God knew better and we wouldn’t trade our time here for anything in the world.  I truly do believe Mrs. Roma and I were called here with a two-fold purpose:  to rebuild unity and foster love in the body of Christ and restore trust and confidence to God’s pulpit at DFBC.  With the Lord’s help, your commitment and overwhelming response, we together have prayerfully accomplished and done just that.  And so, it is with much heartfelt pain and sadness but also great joy and peace that Mrs. Roma and I resign as your senior pastor and wife.  We are deeply saddened because we will miss every single one of you dearly.  We love you with hearts filled with gratitude and thanksgiving more than we could have ever thought or imagined possible.  But we are also overly joyous because God has given us, we believe, a special glimpse into your transcendent future and especially the future of DFBC.  Believe us, when we say that it is very, very exciting to say the least!  However, in order for God to accomplish that and continue His work in and through DFBC, my desire and wish is that I may decrease so that our God can increase abundantly.  Our prayer and devotion to our God has always been that our lives and ministry would be God centered, Christ focused and Holy Spirit led!!!  Mrs. Roma and I will continue to humbly serve with you through the month of May. 
We could not and certainly will never forget you and we do most graciously request that you do not forget us. Please, please lift us up to the Lord each and every day as we will continue to do that for each of you.  Because of the many health challenges I have recently faced, my family and I have arrived at the decision that it is in the best interests of DFBC and me to retire so that I can take better care of myself.  Beyond that, I do plan to enjoy every moment God gives me with my most beautiful and God-given wife of fifty three plus years and our precious, adorable, beautiful, etc., etc., and soon to be overly spoiled, and yes, you got it, down right rotten, God given grandchildren.  Believe us when we say this has been one of the hardest and most soul searching decisions we have ever had to make in our forty three plus years of ministry together, but we know it is the right decision for us and for DFBC. No one factor has made us arrive at this decision.  Nope!!!  We certainly aren’t angry, upset, frustrated, discouraged or defeated, not by a long shot!!!  We take no credit for anything that has been accomplished!!!  Any problems you find after we are gone, blame them on that disease called AGE. I’ve got it, some of you do, too, and if the Lord tarries, I do pray that you all get it, HA! HA!  From January 2010 through the present the attendance, baptisms, mission giving and financial statistics and figures attest to your commitment and support of the Lord’s ministry through all of us and your steadfast faithfulness to our Lord and God. 
To my staff, yes, Leon, we are joined at the hip, we are twins for sure.  You have led the musicians and singers to be one of the most Spirit led worship teams I have ever been privileged to serve with.  Your desire and my desire has always been that the DFBC family and their guests experience God through worship.  Jeanne, my ministry assistant, you have been a pillar of comfort and a tower of courage and strength and the hub of the wheel that encouraged us all to turn the right way.  Robin, you have such an humble love and heart for children.  God sure engineered and designed your heart especially for that purpose.  Miller, WOW!!! My, my how you have made me look so great on Sunday mornings with your professionalism and spirit-filled slides.  Jared, we would have never hired you but Dr. Johnny Rumbough said we better do it.  Just kidding of course!  Your passion for youth to experience Christ even surpasses your beard which I can’t grow and I’m filled with jealousy!  Kidding again!  Matlock, how did we ever get along without you?  You have brought a passion for God and giftedness to the families of this body and you are a pretty good drummer boy too!  Notice, I didn’t say you were pretty!  To Doug, our SS Director, Birgit, our Awana Director, Kathy, our AHG Director, Susan, our WMU Director, Merry Hearts Directors, Toby and Jim, Tommy, my Sunday School teacher and chairman of Budget and Finance Committee, thank you and Go Tigers!!  Much appreciation goes to Carolyn and her Hospitality team for their gifted ministry to families in grief and service to the church family. To all the Godly deacons and the deacon chairmen, Michael, Mike, Tim and Bert who have suffered with me, supported me, stood tall by me and stood in between me and the enemy, how could I ever, ever thank all of you???  I shall be eternally grateful for your unfailing love, prayers, support and wisdom.  To each of you who have sacrificed so much so that this church can become great, THANK YOU, from the depths of my heart.  The Apostle Paul said, “…I planted…Apollos watered…but God gave the increase…” 1 Corinthians 3:6-8.  Only eternity will reveal the results of all that you have accomplished and permitted God to do through each of you and DFBC.  You will never know the depth of our love, affection and the heartfelt gratitude we both feel for each of you.  We are so, so looking forward to seeing His awesome and marvelous great plan unfold here for DFBC and for His magnificent great and awesome glory.
However, having said all the above, through mine and Mrs. Roma’s heart and soul searching prayers over the past two years, there is one other reason for my resignation, and it is probably the most important mitigating factor of all. It is now, and I repeat, “NOW” the time for DFBC to call a full-time pastor to lead this great church to even greater victories, successes and accomplishments for our awesome God and His Kingdom.  Again, I strongly believe that was why God initially led us here: to help prepare, with each of you, this church for greatness in His Kingdom.  Mrs. Roma and I leave you with a sense that God does have a marvelous, uniquely and special bright future planned and prepared for each of you and DFBC.
Therefore, I would humbly ask that the DFBC Pastor Search Team, when elected
 and approved by the church body, please prayerfully consider and pursue as their first candidate for pastor, the Rev. Dr. Chuck McAlister and his lovely wife Janice, in regard to their interest in view of their being called and led of God to become your new senior lead pastor and wife.
I leave with you one of my many life verses, Psalm 42:1, “As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after Thee, O God.”  My prayer is that this would become the desire of each of you as you walk in obedience to Him.   
Forever Secure in His Eternal Grip,
Pastor Johnny
May 28th will be Johnny & Roma’s last Sunday with us. He will preach his last sermon here entitled, “A Pastor’s Farewell To His Church Family.” To celebrate their time with us and to show our appreciation for all they’ve done for us, we will be having a catered barbecue luncheon following the May 28th morning worship service under tents in the parking lot. We are asking, those who are able, to park in the lower parking lot this morning.
If you will be able to attend the luncheon on May 28th, please fill out our RSVP form HERE or contact the church office at (803)781-232 by no later than MAY 14th so we can adequately prepare with regards to food and setup.
DFBC Staff

8 Responses to “A Letter From Johnny”

  1. Linda Collins says:

    Pastor, you and Roma along with your family have been a true
    blessing not only to DFBC, but especially to me. You have a true Love that shines through you to anyone you meet. You always have a kind word and those GREAT BIG HUGS are especially nice. You will truly be missed. I do hope that you will still visit and keep all of DFBC continually in your prayers.
    My God be with you in your retirement and bring great joy through all of your grandchildren as you watch them grow.
    Love always and God Bless…..Linda Collins

  2. Stephanie Hurt says:

    Pastor Johnny and Mrs. Roma,
    Well I heard the news through David, that you were taking the step to retirement. I must say I have mixed emotions for sure. I know it’s time for you both to really enjoy some family time and just some time for yourselves. David, myself and our boys have really grown closer in our walk with God thanks to you and Miss Roma! We really appreciate all that you have given of yourselves to each and everyone of us as a church family, the love of God through your powerful sermons! Your sermons will last a lifetime in our hearts and will be carried on through our daily lives. You have brought so much joy to us and you will always be in our hearts! We Love you Very much! Hope to see you around! I’m really going to Miss you!!
    Love, Stephanie Hurt

  3. Sherri says:

    You have been a true blessing to our entire family, especially Hannah, she loves you deeply, like her beloved and deeply missed grandpa! ❤️ We thank you deeply for all your love, support and prayers over the years! We will greatly miss you, but we wish you the very best retirement and lots of fun filled days with those awesome grandkids! ❤️ Lots of love and hugs for you both!

  4. Annie Martin says:

    You most certainly have a gift and have used it well! We love you and truly will never forget you. My girls and I will miss you both terribly but your decision is completely understandable! Enjoy retirement!

  5. Dorothy Rand says:

    I will always remember the warm hug & prayer you offered when I came by Dutch Fork to check on cemetery plot after my husband Bob’s death. It really showed your heart. I wish you the best of everything in your retirement.

  6. Chris Harvey says:

    My family and I will forever remember your service to the Lord at DFBC. I know you and Mrs. Roma touched each one of our lives personally and editfied Christ at every move. Thank you for being at huge part of our spiritual growth. We all…are bolder and more confident in Christ because our your leadership. Love the Harvey’s

  7. Irv Westheimer says:

    I remember breaking every rule Johnny Rumbaugh set down for a Pastor Search Team except 1 – do what God calls you to do. You have been a blessing tfor DFBC & to our family for many years. Hazel & I pray that you will find many blessings n your retirement. I do sympathize with Jeannie having to take those spoiled rotten kids home after a day with Paw Paw. God Bless.

  8. Nancy Bowman says:

    May God continue to bless you and Mrs Roma. I will most certainly miss you both, but completely understand.