Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Church On Mission

I haven't posted anything to the blog for a little while, due to a pretty heavy ministry schedule. The past week has been quite busy with the usual sermon prep, hospital visits, one funeral, counseling sessions, grass mowing, and even a couple of evenings helping out by taking a grandson to football practice. The book project has had to go on the back burner for the past couple of weeks, and it's going to be tough finding much time to work on it in the foreseeable future.

For the past year or so, we have been focusing on a threefold mission for Westmoreland Baptist Church of "Magnifying God... Ministering to People... and Making Disciples", and I am so encouraged to seeing our people stepping up the ministry work. Three weeks ago, our youth group made a mission trip to Nashville, TN, working in the community through MFuge camp there. At the same time, a dozen more of our adults, spent the week preparing meals and delivering them to four World Changer teams who were doing ministry repair work on homes here in Huntington.

Then came Vacation Bible School. A full week of activity, built around teaching children the Word of God. One young man accepted Christ as Savior as a result of this work. The thing that most impressed me about this year's VBS was the diverse group of workers who helped in Bible School. Forty nine of our church members volunteered for this work, and they ranged in age from 13 to 81!

We have seen numerous additions to our church family in the past few weeks and I had the privilege of baptizing two new believers this past Sunday.

Service increasingly seems to be in the hearts of our people. One couple in their sixties spent two days in the brutal heat last week trimming hedges and doing landscape work around the church property. This week, two of our faithful men (who are in their 70's) spent the better part of the past two days under the floor of the church's educational building, working on repairing some ancient air conditioning ducts. Another 29 year old young man came by after work, and did several hours of work around the church grounds, killing weeds. There is a married couple, and a single lady who regularly show up at the church during the week, just to help out the custodian by cleaning and dusting around the sanctuary. These jobs do not pay a penny. It is work that needed to be done, and these folks just stepped up and did it - didn't have to be asked, and no recognition expected.

Two mission projects were advanced yesterday as I joined a group of 11 men in helping clear a fallen tree from the yard of a woman who lives alone and had been unable to find anyone to help. Then yesterday afternoon, a number of our young people showed up at church to help the Pairs and Spares Class with their "Garments of Grace" Clothing Closet. These kids, along with adult volunteer, Tara Lockhart, spent several hours sorting, sizing, and hanging the donated clothing that we offer to the community in the name of Jesus.

I could go on and on, but these are examples of what we are seeing in the lives of our people at an increasing rate. The church, being the church - trying to be salt and light - reaching out to our community with the Good News of Jesus Christ.

Keep it up folks! The mission goes on...

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