Category Archives: Family

Dodd Family Update

Well, we are a little over a month into our church planting journey. We had no idea what we were walking into, the time line we would be working with, any details, we just knew God had called to step out and pursue church planting, no matter what.  So here is a snap shot of our last month.


**** Even before we had fully stepped down from Lanier Hills, God gave me the opportunity with Fox Home Services doing attic insulation. It is a great job and my boss loves the Lord and supports what God is doing in my families life. It is construction so it isn’t the most consistent work, but we are making enough to pay our bills are being paid.


**** As we continue to ask God for the next step in this journey, God continues to burden and excite our hearts about church planting in a college town. Because of that, we have narrowed our search down a little. Currently, we are praying through Dahlonega, Ga, (North Ga College and State University), Eugene, Or. (University of Oregon), and Corvallis, Or. (Oregon State). We are trying to line up trip to Oregon at the end of this month to be able to taste and experience Oregon culture.


**** We are trying to sharping out sword. One of my mentors, Scott Goetz, told me that in this limbo time, all I need to be doing is sharping my sword and getting ready for war. And that’s what we are doing. Trying to read, grow, learn, and prepare as much as we can for when God gives us the location and green light, we are ready.


So thats where we are. Trying to be present in this middle ground. I had one of my college students ask me the other day how we were doing over text. I responded back, “Good, just working.” He responded back with,

“I thought you were going to plant a church??”


It made me laugh but I could see his confusion. We are planting a church. But like I said earlier, we stepped out with no details, logistics, or location. So we knew we would be in a holding period for a while. We would love to be moving and getting ready for the plant by January but we are just going to love the season we are in and listen to the Lord for the “Go.”


Thanks for your prayers.


The Start of a Crazy Journey

My wife and I are taking a huge risk following the Lord. We have heard clearly that the time has come for us to plant a church. I will be posting a lot about our journey over the next few years. I wanted to share our resignation letter with Lanier Hills Church as well as everyone else as we begin this crazy adventure the Lord has us on.

We will be posting a lot more details soon.

Pray for us. Join us. Support us. Journey with us.


To Randall Popham, the Elders, and Lanier Hills Church,

Thank you guys so much for taking a chance on me three years ago. If it wasn’t for you listening to the Lord, I know I would have never been hired. But because you did, I was able to get my first full-time ministry position. Over the past 3 years, there have been some great times and some hard times, but I have grown as a leader, pastor, husband, father, and disciple. I am really appreciative of your investment into my life.

Over the past year, I knew God was preparing our hearts for something big. I wasn’t sure where, what, or how. My wife and I knew that things would be changing soon. In June, the Lord really put it on my heart to “remember what I have called you to.” That has always been church planting. Again, like I have so many times before, began to make excuses why God was mistaken for asking us to plant. We are too young, inexperienced, not smart enough, etc. But, God would not relent. We felt like he wanted us to begin declaring “We are starting a church.” Not “one day” or “we would like to” but “we are.”

As I gathered some Godly men around me to fast and pray, God began telling me and my wife to leave Lanier Hills. My number one problem with church planting is that I don’t trust God to provide. So, by God calling me to quit a great job with a consistent salary, benefits, and close to home, I really struggled. But, after prayer and affirmation from different avenues in my life, we conceded to the Lord’s plans. We are going to get a normal job as we begin this church-planting journey in efforts to get into the community, meet people of peace, and begin building a core team.

As we are praying about specific details, the Lord has allowed us to zero in on a few areas. One being the Avenue in Cumming, which we feel strongly God is leading us to. We are also praying about Dahlonega and Portland, Oregon. We are completely open to wherever God is leading us to go.

Because of our method of church planting- going in with no core team and starting from scratch- we ask that Lanier Hills would support us with much prayer. We desire a partnership that would last for years.

It is our desire that Lanier Hills would flourish, not fall in our departure. We care deeply for the church and are only leaving because of God’s call on our lives. Because of that, with your blessing, we will be here for six more weeks, making September 30th our last Sunday.

Thank you so much for allowing me to serve here for the past three years. I pray that we can partner together as we follow God in the journey he has for us.

With Love,

gabe dodd