Trust Services and SIMPLIFY
A Reminder to Remember
The following was written by Brian Shepler, President and EVP of Client Services, located in Ronald Blue Trust's national office in Atlanta, Georgia.
At Ronald Blue Trust’s national office in Atlanta, we have a “history wall” that visually highlights key milestones in our company’s history. Visitors and special guests are often given a tour of the office by Russ Crosson, Executive Vice Chairman and the first employee hired by Ron Blue, founder of Ronald Blue & Co. Part of this tour includes talking through the history wall’s elements which encompass the company’s mission, early foundations, and major corporate developments. Woven throughout our story is a consistent demonstration of God’s faithfulness in each season of the company’s evolution and a clear reflection of His sovereign purposes in our work with clients.
Our guests frequently comment on how encouraging it is to hear the story of the company’s founding and to observe how leadership has consistently sought God’s wisdom as they seek to meet client needs. It also serves as an encouragement to our staff and a helpful reminder of how God has sustained us through multiple market cycles and seasons of transition over the years.
Why is it that we, as a people, often take time to reflect on different parts of history, whether it’s our nation’s history, our ancestral history, or our own personal history? Why do we choose to look back on moments in time with focused attention? We believe that remembering our journey, whether it’s a personal life journey or our company’s history, serves as an encouragement by showing how God has been faithful and has sustained us through the years.
There are many examples in Scripture where the practice of remembrance is encouraged or reinforced:
“I shall remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your wonders of old.” Psalm 77:11
“Then those who feared the Lord spoke with one another. The Lord paid attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him of those who feared the Lord and esteemed His name.” Malachi 3:16
“And when He had taken some bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me.’” Luke 22:19
Ronald Blue Trust experienced a truly monumental year in 2017. Transitioning from a registered investment advisor (RIA) platform to a nationally-chartered trust company platform and gaining a kingdom-minded partner in Thrivent Financial was a pivotal event. In the midst of that significant corporate migration, the company experienced record revenue, and the combined assets of Ronald Blue Trust and Thrivent Trust are nearing $9 billion.
What we choose to remember most, however, are the opportunities God provided for us to serve our amazing clients and witness their generosity in a variety of circumstances – in the wake of Hurricane Harvey in Houston, amidst the joys of family weddings and new arrivals, and through the loss of spouses or loved ones.
It is a privilege to draw upon biblical wisdom to offer advice to families with such generous hearts. We are thankful to now be positioned as a trust company to remain engaged with multiple generations on their journey of stewardship.
At one point during our transition, Brad Hewitt, CEO of Thrivent, also emphasized the biblical tradition of establishing points of remembrance by sharing an account from 1 Samuel 7:
“Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen and called its name Ebenezer; for he said,
Till now the Lord has helped us.
” 1 Samuel 7:12
Every trust company employee received a similar “Ebenezer stone” engraved with the company’s mission statement and anchor verse, 1 Timothy 6:17-19, to serve as a visual reminder that God has indeed been sovereignly involved in the company’s rich history and will be faithful in the years ahead.
As we launch into 2018, please join us in this “reminder to remember” the many times over the years when God in His sovereignty provided for our every need and demonstrated His immeasurable love for us. May that remembrance
as a source of hope and confidence for all of us in the coming year.
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Disclaimer: Ronald Blue Trust obtains historical and other information from a wide variety of publicly available sources. The information and material provided is for informational purposes only and is intended to be educational in nature. We have taken reasonable care and precaution to ensure that the information is fair and accurate, or has been compiled from sources believed to be reliable. Nevertheless, we do not make any representations or warranty, express or implied, as to the accuracy, completeness, or fitness for any purpose or use of the information. The information may not in all cases be current and it is subject to continuous
change. Accordingly, you should not rely on any of the information as authoritative or a substitute for the exercise of your own skill and judgment in making any investment or other decision. We recommend that individuals consult with a professional advisor familiar with their particular situation for advice concerning specific investments, accounting, tax, and legal matters or other matters before taking any action. We shall not be liable for any direct, indirect, or consequential loss arising from any use of or reliance on the information contained here. Certain sections of this commentary may contain forward-looking statements that are based on our reasonable expectations, estimate, projections and assumptions. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve certain risks and uncertainties, which are difficult to predict. Investing involves risk and the value of your investment will fluctuate over time and you may gain or lose money. Past performance of any security, sector or investment style is not necessarily indicative of future results.