This Made Me Cry

Today I drove off the campus of Grace Community Church as I have done thousands of times before. But this time was different. This time, I knew I wouldn’t be coming back, at least not as one of her pastors. We are now in the throws of moving to Kansas City and beginning a new chapter of ministry with Mission Road Bible Church. As of today, I’m officially finished with my responsibilities at GCC.

I did not expect the flood of emotions as I turned right on Roscoe Bld. and headed towards the Hollywood FWY, but wow was I ambushed.

Three decades of ministry and relationships are attached to that piece of real estate in Sun Valley, CA. I love Grace Community Church. It is the place Kim and I met and married. It is the only church our sons have ever known. It hosts The Master’s Seminary where I was trained for ministry. It is where I’ve gained my best friends. It is where I have learned how the church is to function biblically. And most importantly, it is the place that has fed my love for my Lord and Savior, Jesus.

So, I hope you’ll excuse me if my affections overwhelmed me. Oh, and this was not a teary eyed, lump in the throat, try to hide it in a sad movie cry; it was a full on sob. And the immediate reflex of my soul was to thank God for His kindness in letting me serve at Grace. If Paul could have a good cry with the Ephesian elders at the dock of Miletus (Acts 20:37), so could I on the Hollywood FWY onramp.

But now it’s time to look forward. I am so excited about beginning my pastorate at MRBC that I feel like a bottle of Root Beer that’s taken a ride on a jackhammer. The people there in our new Kansas body are special. Very special. They have already adopted us and shown us love that is impossible to describe. And we haven’t even moved there yet!

I am especially excited for Kim and the boys. The women of the church have befriended Kim such that she feels like they have known each other for years. Our boys have become quickly connected to the students in the church and have already made pretty extensive plans for the Fall. And the elders at MRBC have become such gospel partners that I am tempted to well up with tears, again. (Not sure if my man card is going to be threatened after this post.)

All to say, I am blessed man. Blessed to have served at Grace Community and doubly blessed now to serve at Mission Road. And the treasure of all is doing it with my four favorite people.

Time to get to KC and join the gospel work happening there.

26 Comments on “This Made Me Cry

  1. The Bailie’s praise God for you, Rick. Your influence continues here in the Central Valley for the glory of our Christ.

  2. And in the three and a half years I’ve been at GCC, one thing I will miss: never had the chance to sit down in your office with you. God blessed me abundantly through your ministry and faithfulness. Thank you, and praise be to God for your life, Rick. I will miss you indeed! Godspeed!

  3. Man card? You did what real, godly men do. Thanks for your faithfulness at & thru Grace all these years.

  4. Mr Rick Holland you will be truly missed and I will be forever grateful for you and your wonderful preaching. May the Lord bless you and Kim and the boys while being in Kansas, I am praying for you guys and love you very much too!!

  5. You blessed our family greatly and I am thankful for the time we had under your teaching!I am sorry that Logan will not be able to sit under your teaching while he is at Master’s but am excited for your family and the body in KC!

  6. Brother Rick it is our loss and their gain, may God bless you as you have blessed us and my sons through your ministry and teaching.My family sends lots of love and blessings to the Kansas church.

  7. Now I’m going to cry thinking about you leaving Grace which is our home church. I remember when you conducted communion that you said something that impacted me deeply and has eternal value. You said “Do not to take communion if there was sin in your life. Let the cup pass you – no one will care”. Before that I thought everyone would see if I let the cup pass & I always took communion even though I had doubt (due to sin) that I should partake. Thank you Rick Holland. Though we will miss you deeply we are know that God will use you like He used in you at Grace – faithfully. Thank you and thank you Kim.

  8. And Grace Community Church will miss you! In the years that Erik and I were in Crossroads individually and as a married couple with you as our pastor, we were challenged, convicted, encouraged, and grown more than we knew at the time we needed to be. It was painful at times confronting sin we didn’t know we had (especially since we were so young in the faith when we entered Crossroads) but always joyful to know that we were becoming more like Christ as we followed you. Words cannot describe how thankful we are for your ministry to the two of us. I know God will bless you and your family as you follow His will for your life. We’ll be sure to look for you when we hear you are in town!

  9. We’ll all miss you so much and are grateful for your heart and ministry with GCC!!! If I have one memory, from Grace of over 10 years ago, (college) it’s that it was there that I learned of the majesty of God. I know your new church family in Kansas City will benefit and enjoy in the same way. Do they know how blessed they are?!! 🙂 It’s so great to hear how sweet they’ve been in welcoming your family.

  10. You will be missed greatly at GCC, but we rejoice with you for your new ministry in Kansas. Continue to to be faithfl in your ministry to our Lord and He will truly bless the work of your hands. Oh and BTW your man card is still good.

  11. Rick, I can’t imagine the flood of emotions because I have never had the honor of serving the Lord in a church for that long, but I have witnessed your love for the saints at Grace.
    Praying that the Lord provide His abiding presence to bring comfort and joy these days ahead. Looking forward to seeing you at Gold Country Baptist next weekend and hearing you serve our Great God through the preaching of the Word. Love you. Thank you for your loving care for me in preaching lab, my family, and extended family (i.e. Dr. Bob). Looking forward to hearing more of His work in and through you while with the saints at Mission Road. Blessings.

  12. Thanks for this post. GCC is a very special local church!

  13. Rick and Kim,
    Welcome to the Midwest. We look forward to being neighbors and trust God will bring us together more often than not. May He richly bless this new path and overwhelm you with His goodness.

    Steve Lonetti
    Beacon of Hope, St. Paul, MN

  14. Reading your post made me cry …we didn’t have as many years at Grace but I can relate when its the place you got saved, baptized, met & married your spouse and had your babies. Deep relationships are build there BUT never broken. Already being 11 years since we left Grace I know even though it will be hard God has an amazing plan for you, Kim & the boys. All for your good and HIS glory! I’m so excited to see what God will do with the gifts He has given you and Kim. I know I can’t ever get Ben to move back to LA but Kansas is tempting with all the hunting & fishing there.

  15. rick, reading your post I feel your sadness and your excitement! May I say we all have those same emotions in us as you close one long chapter in your life and open another. Again I thank our God for your ministry to us and ask Him to bless you and your family in your new home. Kansas City, be prepared to have your “world turned upside down.” 🙂

  16. Rick- so thankful for the Holland family and the ways the Lord has used each of you over the years! It has been a blessing to sit under your ministry in Crossroads for three years. What a sad, and yet exciting chapter today marks for you all! One thing is for sure, Mission Road Bible Church is getting five treasures in the Holland family. =)
    May the Lord continue to bless your ministry for the kingdom!
    -Mollie Mehringer
    Philippians 1:3-6

  17. God was kind indeed to let your lives permeate mine for so many years of my life.
    We serve such a good God with MIGHTY plans for you guys. His faithfulness in the past is proof indeed for spectacular things to come!
    Thank you for your service to our Lord and for your impact on my life. Both you and Kim.
    Truly grateful for you guys and eager to hear what a smashing influence you’ll have on Kansas City!!

    Praise God for the body!
    J I N I

  18. Rick, my friend there are no words that can adequately describe the impact that you have had on my life as my pastor, my mentor, my friend… It is exceptionally sad to see you leave, and GCC will never be the same (as well, it will never forget the impact you made in shaping her into the church she is today). I cannot think of a church that is about to be blessed as much as the Lord has in store for MRBC! It is going to be very exciting to watch the Lord’s plan of impact He has for you and Kim and the boys there, I am jealously happy for them knowing that this is exactly where God has you going and exactly where He has given you a heart for ministry. You go there with a ministry left behind that weeps to see you leave us, but rejoices to see you arrive with MRBC knowing that the faithful leadership you will bring there is going to have an eternal impact on that gathering of saints, as well as on the kingdom work in that town and through your global ministry! God bless you, brother! I know we’ll see each other again (Lord willing), and in this day and age moving halfway across the country isn’t really saying goodbye, but I will personally miss your very personal impact on my life and I want to thank you for it! Love you, Brother!

  19. Rick,
    No worries, you still hold your man card! We are so thankful for you and for your ministry to us at Grace Community while Rick was in seminary. We were incredibly blessed by your discipleship and leadership. Know that as we minister to college students here in Roanoke, VA, your impact on us overflows to the students we are involved with. The congregation at MRBC is greatly blessed to have you and it’s a joy to hear that they’ve received you and your family with love. Praying for you as God takes you all on this new journey.

    Many blessings and much love,
    Julie Clark

  20. Rick… Your life that you have shared.. the lessons you have taught and the friendship that you have offered has been priceless. I was fortunate to sit under your wing for 5 years & the ride has been challenging, convicting, and has always pointed me back to the Cross, with so many laughs in between. Thank you for your sacrificial love for us– Pls come back for Big Church and then sneak out for Crossroads! 😉 We miss you and respect you deeply & anticipate you coming back as a guest speaker <– but most of us will truly know you're just coming back to home! Safe travels


  22. Brother Rick,

    I have committed to pray for you, and will continue to remember you in my prayers daily as the Lord directs you and your family.

    Grace Bible Church, Bozeman Montana

  23. Rick,
    Thanks for sharing this. That picture out the car window of the GCC sign and Roscoe Blvd. brought back a lot of wonderful memories for me. Eight of the most formative years of my life were spent as a member at Grace: converted; baptized; met and married my wife; trained at TMS; began life-long friendships; fed faithfully week in and week out by you, Phil Johnson, Pastor MacArthur and so many others. Thanks for this reminder of God’s goodness to so many of us through GCC. I pray the Lord continues to smile on you and your family as you proclaim his gospel and glory in KC.

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