In case you didn't read my last post (just scroll down) I'll be concluding my ministry at Memorial at the end of the year to plant a new church in Beaumont. Over these next five months I'll be helping them through the transition/ pastor-search process as well as continuing my regular responsibilities of preaching and shepherding my flock.
There's no denying that we've faced some significant challenges over the last 3 1/2 years but I love my fellow church members and continue to desire to see the Word of God shape this church to His glory. Please pray for these next few months that my ministry would be a help toward this. Second, pray the Lord would prepare them to receive and follow the next pastor. Finally, pray for the next pastor- whoever he may be.
Now while I continue as pastor at MBC I'll also be diving head-long into the church planting process. Here are the next few steps and things you all (whoever you all may be) can be praying for:
1. My hope and goal is to "launch" with ten core group families. We are 3 families toward that goal and will begin meeting together during the week for prayer, planning, fellowship, and Bible study in late August. Pray the Lord would gather more to help with this endeavor (particularly those strong in their faith and like-minded in building the church on Biblical truth). Pray for our core group gatherings that the Lord would strengthen our bond and resolve.
2. In addition to the core group families, a second hope and goal is to assemble a coalition of at least ten partnering churches. We need churches who will contribute financially toward this new work on a monthly basis to bridge the gap while we "make disciples" and bring in more contributing families/ individuals to the church. We also need churches who, though cannot financially contribute monthly would help with one-time offerings or by "man-power" help for special projects (mission teams). Presently I've had five pastors express a firm desire to lead their churches to partner at some level and others who have shared a willingness to pray about it. I envision a great opportunity for many churches to work together and be strengthened in their efforts. So pray the Lord would put this need on the heart of congregations.
3. I'll keep everyone updated through my blog and be watching for the church name and launch date to be made official in the next two weeks. Thank you for your prayers and the many of you who have offered your encouragement and words affirmation!
Soli Deo Gloria!