What a great day at Temple! I’m so thankful and excited to welcome the Adams and the McCulloms to the TBC family. I’m also thankful for the words of confirmation of the Spirit’s work in people’s lives in this morning’s message. I felt the presence of the Holy Spirit during the invitation time during both services. His presence was especially evident during the first service’s invitation. The old timey preachers would have referred to it as “thick,” and it was just that. It has been a while since I was hesitant to move or say something for fear of moving out of or pushing past His presence. I’m just so thankful that He manifested Himself in our services in such a powerful and personal way.
It’s also exciting to see how the Lord is working in the lives of new believers at Temple. Tonight, after the service, I had a grown man who has recently asked Christ into his life, started attending church and reading his bible on a regular, daily basis come to me and ask me where to read next. In the past couple of weeks he’s read through all four gospels, Genesis and Exodus and was looking for some guidance on where to read next. (I recommended the pastoral epistles of Galatians through Colossians, explaining the meaning and general gist of each one.) So good to see the Holy Spirit “teaching” all things to this new believer and look forward to seeing this brother in Christ follow the Lord in Believer’s Baptism in the near future.
Today was also the first day that Pastor Jerry Zapatas and his core group met at the church. Pastor Jerry is a godly man and will do a great job ministering to the Hispanic folks in our community. Please pray for him as Satan has already attempted to sow the seeds of division within his fledgling church. Please also pray that we will be sensitive as a church to their needs, and support them as they seek to bring their family and friends to Jesus. I really believe that the Lord will bless us as a church as we minister to these sweet folks.
Tonight was a blessing to this pastor’s heart. As I was preaching this evening I couldn’t help think about how there is so much more of a freedom in preaching on Sunday night as compared to some Sunday mornings. What a real encouragement to see such a great attendance on a Sunday night – people who were ready to receive the expository preaching of the Word of God. I think I know a little bit about what Paul meant when he wrote about the church at Thessalonica that “you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe.”
The picture at the top of the page was taken Friday evening as the Whitt family took just a little bit of time to get away. We spent Friday evening and Saturday morning at the Ridgecrest Conference Center in Black Mountain, NC. This center, funded in part through our Cooperative Program dollars is a wonderful facility and will make a great destination for a Family Retreat that we’re looking forward to putting together in the very near future.
I’m looking forward to a great week serving Jesus, connecting with His people and investing in the leaders that He’s placed in the local body of believers known as Temple Baptist Church.
I’ll leave you with the quote that I shared in both morning services and ask you to really consider what it means in your life. “If the Lord led you to become a part of Temple Baptist Church He did so for one of two purposes. Either to strengthen what is already in existence or to create what is yet to be.” So, why were you led to TBC? What’s the Lord saying to you today? Do it.