A Year-End Letter to the DG Staff

Dear Desiring God Staff,

As 2008 fades into history, I want to tell you again what a precious, undeserved privilege it has been to serve with you in the mission of Desiring God. God granted 44 of you to serve at some time during 2008, 35 of whom remain while the rest have followed the Lord’s call into other fields.

Most of the work—and the most important work—of Desiring God was accomplished this year through you. 1 Peter 2:17 says “Honor everyone.” And so I want to briefly honor each one of you:

Larry Agnew, your godly, pastoral leadership of our remarkable volunteer corps is priceless. When you are here, a sage walks among us.

Scott Anderson, your humble and highly skilled leadership has made our conferences both spiritually rich and logistically excellent. Thank you, brother.

Kevin Beyer, it’s great to have you on board now! Thank you for serving with us in our audio production.

Edd Blott, I can hardly believe we get to have someone of your skill and creativity leading our video production efforts. What you do is amazing!

Dan Brendsel, thank you for years of editorial partnership. God be with you as you pursue your Ph.D. at Wheaton.

Laura Cline, thank you for serving so many on the phone. God bless you in Nashville as you study for an M.A. in English.

Bryan (Stick) DeWire, words are inadequate to express my gratitude for how graciously you assist me, John K, and Carol. I love to hear how you make John laugh!

Sarah DeWire, your excellent assistance for Terry only begins to describe your impact at DG. Thank you for keeping your husband, Bryan, in line for me!

Brian Eaton, I bless the day that you began as Director of Children Desiring God. You are the right man. I treasure our friendship.

Andrea Froehlich, when I saw you serve a struggling caller with your Bible open, I was overwhelmed with how gifted we are to have you.

Ryan Golias, behind your quiet diligence in resource production is a spiritual depth and a bright mind I admire.

Katie Haas, I love that your work station is so close to mine. Your constant cheerfulness buoys my spirit. And you lead our resource consultants very well!

Karen Hieb, you are an answered prayer for the CDG team! You manage projects with great skill and I love your contributions at staff devotions.

Sarah H., I miss you here. I loved your cheerfulness on the phones and your infectious love of the Jewish people.

Eric Johnson, I will miss you too. You are a gifted leader; you have a compelling vision; and you’re a true Christian Hedonist. Thank you for leading the internet team.

Tyler Kenney, your work in preparing so much of our archived material for the web has simply been invaluable. I love your heart. Great days are ahead for you.

John Knight, tears come when I think of the gift your leadership has been this year. Thank you for agreeing to come aboard and for your friendship.

Terry Kurschner, the DG ship stays upright and on course largely through God’s provision of your financial leadership. I don’t know what I would do without you.

Matt Lund, your leadership of BBC’s bookstores, and especially the conference bookstores, have made them world-class in my opinion. Your job is harder than most know. But Jesus knows. Thank you.

Seth Magnuson, it’s a joy to see you in the Int’l Outreach dept now where you heart beats. Exciting days are ahead!

Kate Martin, you are a gift. Beyond skillfully keep our supply chain running, you are always humbly serving the DG staff through your remarkable gift of hospitality. I think there’s a Kate fan club developing...

David Mathis, all of us who at one time have served as JP’s assistant rise up and call you blessed. You far excel us all.

Marty McAlpine, when you pulled me aside at the SLO conference to pray over the video equipment, I knew we had a treasure in you. I cannot begin to thank you for the technical expertise you have brought.

Jeff McFadden, our faraway friend in Phoenix. I rarely get to see you, but I regularly get to see how your excellent programming makes the website soar!

Peter Melling, thank you , thank you, thank you for leading the IT dept singlehandedly and so skillfully! Oh, the help you have been to me personally…

Nathan Miller, thank you so much for assisting David in serving JP! I really enjoyed the breakfast we shared in SLO!

Lukas Naugle, what would DG be without you? I don’t want to think about it. So much of what we’ve done in the last 3 years had its genesis in your creative mind.

Aaron O’Harra, it is not lost on me that we have a pastor-theologian answering phones. Someday I’ll probably be reading your books.

Peter Ostebo, your artistic filmmaking is missed, my friend. May God make you fruitful as you serve the precious church in Illinois.

Matt Perman, you came back! Thank you! Thank God! How good it is to have your brilliant mind and passionate heart in senior leadership at DG!

Bryan Pickering, you are missed. I love your passionate heart for Jesus. He will use you well at Impact and at BBC.

Abraham Piper, you more than anyone are responsible for making the DG blog what it is. Your being on the DG staff is an answer to prayer.

Jenny Rigney, all of us are so thrilled for you and Joe and unborn baby Rigney! But you will be missed more than you know when it’s time to leave.

Josh Sowin, you are still our excellent Webmaster, and I miss you anyway (and Sara)! Though today you’re not regretting your move to Florida. It was 10 below when I drove to work!

Carol Steinbach, your compassion for the suffering and care for prisoners has shaped DG. And thank you for helping us clueless guys actually notice other people.

Michael Stokes, thank you for helping make the Word heard through skillfully editing our audio sermons. Tens of thousands benefit from this every week.

Craig & Kathy Sturm, you are dearly missed. You both were great joys to have around. God’s fruitful blessings on your new ministry in Canada.

Joe & Sarah Sweetman, you both are also missed, but the Navigators on the U of M campus are richer!

Kristin Tabb, you not only have served the CDG effort with editorial excellence, you and Brian have also become authors! Praise God!

Jim Tomaszewski, almost 9 years of partnership. God has used you so significantly to make CDG what it has become. Thank you for enduring.

Mike Tong, I wish I could clone you! Your leadership of the customer service team is outstanding. But it is your heart for Jesus and love of our mission that I treasure most.

Bill Walsh, we will mark 10 years of partnership together next month. I couldn’t be more thrilled with your leadership of International Outreach. Hold tight! The ride will be wild…

And this is just the paid staff. Time would fail me to tell of Terry M, Candi, Nancy, Marlin, Nathan, Alice, Laurie, and a host of other volunteers who regularly give freely of their time to serve at DG.

I love you all and count it one of my life’s greatest honors to have you as friends and co-laborers. Thank you so much for a fruitful year.

Jon Bloom

Jon Bloom (@Bloom_Jon) is the author of Not by Sight: A Fresh Look at Old Stories of Walking by Faith and serves as the President of Desiring God, which he and John Piper launched together in 1994. He lives in the Twin Cities with his wife, Pam, their five children, and one naughty dog.