A Year to Go Back to the Future

Imagine what this coming year might be for your church!

Wow! What an amazing year 2018 has been! We’re not a super-large church but as we enter 2019, we’ve had amazing growth and results.

It all started with ECON on January 22-23, 2018. I decided to invite our key leaders to join me for the conference at First Baptist Pineville. They came away inspired and motivated to reach their neighbors, recruit new leaders, and most of all share the Good News of Christ. And as always, ECON program fees were all waived thanks to CP.

We even took 20 students to Student Night and three accepted Christ. Brent Crowe knocked it out of the park, but more than anything, God showed up. I’m so glad our volunteers took the initiative to make it happen.

Five of our students went to Voyage to learn about missions. All of them returned committed to make their life count for the Gospel. I think one student might feel called to become a vocational missionary. She went to Uganda in July with a few other students from our association.

In February, I went to the Prayer Bootcamp with Claude King. Wow! I came away committed to pray more for our church. After that day I invested more time than I ever have in prayer and I see God doing so many incredible things!

We hired a part-time youth minister and one of the first things I encouraged him to do was to go to The Forum. He made some great connections with other veteran youth leaders and got to hear Brent Crowe again from the perspective of youth ministry leadership.

A number of our women went to the WMU Missions Celebration 2018 back in April. After returning they started working on an “English as a Second Language” ministry and a Tuesday night Bible study. Our church is now multicultural! They also began a food closet!

Summer was amazing with a record-breaking VBS thanks to the training our team received then incredible trips to Kids Camp and Clear Camp. By the end of the summer our attendance on Sundays averaged way above our 2017 numbers.

Ten of our Sunday School teachers and leaders went to ReGroup in August and by October we saw a marked improvement in our Sunday School outreach, attendance and leader recruitment. We’ve started 3 new classes!

For the first time in years I went to the Louisiana Baptist Annual Meeting. There was such a feeling of purpose and unity in our state. I got to see lots of old friends, but more than anything I started getting really excited about 2019! I was reminded time and time again that this is important, eternal work that we do.

We doubled the number of students going to YEC. We had 15 decisions from our church and I believe we now have the funds to start talking to our youth minister about going full-time. I’m so thankful for him!

All-in-all we’ve had an amazing 2018 and I can’t wait for 2019! Ministry is such an adventure and I’m so grateful to have the opportunity to serve as a pastor. God is at work and we are thankful that so many of these events we supported and funded through the Cooperative Program.