Well, it seems hard to believe, but another year has passed in the life of our church. We began Grace Covenant Church in our living room the third Sunday of June, 2007, and here we are six years later continuing to grow in the Lord as a church, and as individuals. What a blessing it is each week to be part of the body of Christ here in our niche in West Texas.
Of course, each year is eventful, and unique and special in its own way. This past year has certainly been no exception. We went through a time of pruning that covered most of 2012, but John 15 tells us that times of pruning are preparation for times of increased fruitfulness, and that is what we have seen the last several months. Yes, some of the fruitfulness has been increased numbers, but again we are seeing spiritual fruitfulness and growth in Christ in our people, which is the important fruit. There is a visible love and concern for each other that has grown over the last year, especially the last several months, along with an obvious desire for the Lord to be glorified in our lives. In thinking about this last year, I am reminded of the story of Gideon and the 10,000 men that had come to fight with him against the enemy. Before the battle the Lord pruned the 10,000 down to 300 so they would not think it was their numbers that gave them the victory, but would know it was the Lord who gave the victory, and therefore it was the Lord who would receive the glory. That principle holds true for churches and individuals, as well.
Another thing the Lord has done for us this last year is bless us with a worship leader. We have put feelers out on a couple of occasions for someone to lead worship, but to no avail. In December, we felt impressed by the Lord to be very intentional about finding someone, which is no small task since they would have to be bi-vocational. But sure enough at that same time the Lord was moving in the heart of a young man who was teaching at a Bible College over 800 miles away that it was time to move from ministering at the college to ministering in a church. Through a series of events only the Lord could orchestrate, the Lord moved him and his family to Midland at the first of April. From the middle of nowhere Wyoming to the middle of nowhere Texas...the Lord has done a marvelous thing.
We had another baptism this year, recently in fact. We have two brothers who play the sax in our worship. I call them the Blues Brothers, and both of them have come to faith in Christ and been baptized since coming to our church. The second was baptized just a few weeks ago, and I was blessed by his testimony, but both are active and committed to the Lord and their families are a blessing to our church. In fact, the other Blues Brother and his wife adopted a child in January, and praying for them and rejoicing with them during the process was another blessing for us as a church.
In looking forward to this upcoming year, we are at a point where we need a youth pastor. Again, he will have to be bi-vocational, but we know that the Lord will provide in His time, and in His way.
Apart from my own family, there is no where I would rather be than with our people each week. Being a pastor has its challenges and its joys, but I consider myself blessed to be the pastor of this flock of God known as Grace Covenant Church of Midland, Texas. Thank You, Lord!
Another milestone is that this is the 500th post since this blog started. I never thought I would have this much to say.