From Your Pastor, June 2012

 

Summer!  What a great time of the year that everyone looks forward to, particularly children and young people! But if you’re like me, you have to admit that we adults really like it, too.  Summertime means vacation, the beach, special conferences, and wonderful times with family and friends.  What an enjoyable time of the year!

 

With summer being a relaxing time and many of us being away from church when we go on vacation, some folks forget to give their tithes and offerings when they are away.  It is so important to the mission of the church that we each be faithful to give continuously throughout the summer months so that God’s work is not interrupted.  Remember that, just as your home budget needs continue weekly, so do the budget needs of your church.  In addition, summertime is when our children and youth are out of school and their ministries really go to the next level with activities and expenses.  If you are planning a vacation this summer, I pray that you will do whatever it takes to get your offerings to the church office before you leave.  Thanks so very much for your faithfulness to God and His church.  In Malachi 3:10, He promises to bless your faithfulness!  “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.”

 

Another thing that happens during the summer months is that some believers who have worked hard all year feel that summertime becomes a vacation time from the worship services and activities of the church.  You can be assured that North Anderson Baptist Church is alive and well during the summer!  We will continue to worship our God and serve Him in our community and beyond! We will continue to have exciting services, activities, and opportunities for service!  Hebrews 10:25 urges us to continue to worship the Lord and not let anything get in the way“… not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another —and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”

 

May the joy of summer bring you closer to the presence of God by your personal worship and service to God and His church.


From Your Pastor, May 2012

Dear Friends,

We are seeing in our nation a movement away from anything regarding Jesus. Our government has made a conscience effort to seek to eliminate all references of God and particularly Jesus from the public eye, including the military and all of its places of worship during war. In all my years I have not seen such animosity toward the Word of God and the name of Jesus Christ. What is to be done about it? I believe first and foremost we all must pray. And for that reason I encourage you to participate in the National Day of Prayer effort that our Saluda Baptist Association will be holding on Thursday, May 3, 2012. There will be services at 9am and at noon. Please contact the Association to get your place reserved at the service you desire to attend. Call 864-225-7759 to make your reservation. Come and share in praying for our nation. If you would like to attend the “Community” National Day of Prayer at the courthouse downtown it begins at noon. I will be there and praying for the first-responders: firefighters, law enforcement, and emergency medical personnel. Whichever prayer time you attend doesn’t matter. I just encourage you to go somewhere and pray with other believers for our nation and her leaders.

My good friend at FBC Camden, Bruce Hancock, included the following in his church newsletter. I hope you enjoy it.

THE TOP TEN STATEMENTS PASTORS
WOULD LIKE TO HEAR

10. Hey, it’s my turn to sit in the front pew.
9. I was so enthralled, I never noticed the sermon went overtime by 20 minutes.
8. Personally Pastor, I find coming to church much
more enjoyable than golfing, it is so inspiring.
7. Pastor, I’ve made a commitment to begin tithing.
6. I volunteered to stay in Extended Session once per quarter.
5. I love it when we sing hymns and choruses we’ve never sung before.
4. Change? We love change! We are not afraid to try new things! Who wants to do something just because that is the way we’ve always done it?
3. Oh pastor, I was thrilled to be approached by the Nominating Committee last week! Yes, I’ll serve! I just love committee meetings!
2. The temperature in the sanctuary is just perfect.
1. I witnessed to three people this week and one of them received Christ as Lord and Savior. He’s coming for baptism and church membership this morning.

From Your Pastor, April 2012

What a joy it will be to worship together during the Easter season! The blessed hope of the Christian life and for the lost world is the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. We start our Easter season services with Good Friday Communion on Friday, April 6. Communion will be offered from 12 noon to 1 pm and again from 5 pm to 6:30 pm. You are encouraged to come as families, with friends, or individually. Our annual Sunrise Service will begin at 7 am on Easter Sunday, followed by a light breakfast in the gym. Easter morning worship will begin at 10:30, preceded by Bible study at 9:15. My prayer is that as you remember the great sacrifice Jesus made for the forgiveness of sin and the gift of eternal life, you will make worship of the Savior a priority.

North Anderson Baptist Church stands as a lighthouse to our community. It is our great privilege and responsibility to proclaim the Truth that Jesus Christ is the Son of the Living God and that He has come to give us a life worth living now and life eternal with Him in heaven one day. We, as believers and followers of the Lord, should seek to live lives that shine the love of Jesus Christ into a dark sinful world where hurt and sorrow prevail. Our desire should be to minister with the heart of Jesus to those with spiritual, physical, and emotional needs. If you have not been active in caring and sharing the love that God has so freely given you, come join us in worship and service in the kingdom of God and in the community in which we live.

We are also looking forward this month to Cooperative Program Sunday on April 22. I know you will be inspired and informed as you hear about the great ways Southern Baptists have carried on the mission of the church since 1925. Join us as we hear about what God has done through our past, rejoice in what He is doing right now, and accept the challenge to join Him for a great future of service in cooperation with other believers.

From Your Pastor, March 2012

Dear Friends,

In Matthew 9:35-38 Jesus speaks of a great need. Read to see what He is speaking about.

35 Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. 36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. 38 Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”

Did you see Jesus’ emphasis on five things? The first emphasis is to see the people, the crowds. They were weary, helpless, and lost, kind of like a sheep without a shepherd. Sheep without a shepherd will roam without thinking of the danger they may be in or the needs they have for safety and survival. These people were lost and away from God; they did not know Him and His love, His greatness, or His care. The second emphasis from Jesus is for His disciples to see their Master’s compassion for the people. The third emphasis from Jesus is for His disciples to see that there was a great harvest available; people were ripe to hear the Word of God. The enemy had prepared his evil plans for them and they could not defend themselves. In their weakened condition of needing the guidance and hope that The Good Shepherd could provide, they would be responsive to the Gospel of the Lord Jesus. This was just not a few people, but the multitudes of those all around them; the harvest was plentiful. The fourth thing that Jesus emphasized in this scripture was the need for the disciples to see that the workers
in the harvest are few! The fifth emphasis is that the followers of Christ were to see that their responsibility was to pray to the “Lord of the Harvest” to send out more workers into His field.

How do we relate today to this scripture? First, it is clear that Jesus wants us to see the crowds of people today who are lost, without shepherding, and that they are wandering in danger of the enemy of our souls. Jesus still wants us, His church, to look out and to see them as they are, helpless and in need. Won’t you just take time to look out from your comfort zone and the confines of your protective home and see the crowds of lost people Jesus sees?

Second, He desires for us, you and me, to see our need for the same compassion that He had then and still has today, for the lost and dying humanity that we find ourselves around daily. Won’t you share your compassion with the lost and dying crowds?

Third, He wants us to see that there is still a large and “plentiful” harvest available. People are searching for spiritual answers to the problems of life. They want to know who God is and if He can help them in their problems and troubles. People are truly ripe today and ready to hear a true Gospel of salvation and forgiveness, to trust in something bigger than they are. Won’t you recognize for yourself, that the fields are white unto harvest?

Fourth, Jesus’ emphasizes to us that there just aren’t enough workers out there to bring in a harvest. It is so important to see the workers are still few. God has blessed the church but so few are willing to go into the fields armed with the Word of God and story of His love and forgiveness. Won’t you consider being a worker in God’s field?

Fifth, we need to see that our responsibility is to pray to the Lord that He will send laborers into His field do that there may be a harvest of souls for the Lord. What will it take for you to pray with passion and personal sincerity, seeking the Lord of the harvest to send laborers out? Where is the harvest field? It may be that the field you are to consider going into is your own neighborhood. That might be your harvest area. Others might be led to go into the fields of the world. Won’t you pray to God to send laborers to go into the harvest and then listen for God’s still, small voice which might say to you, “I want you to go for us.”

Training for going into the harvest will be February 26th from 5-7 pm, and April 29, May 6, and May 20 each at 6pm, and then May 23 at 6:45pm.

From Your Pastor, January 2012

January will bring several new and significant events in the life of the church. With the New Year we have scheduled a new training session for our membership in sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ without fear.  The author of the book “Sharing Jesus Without Fear”, Bill Fay, will be here to preach and teach on this subject on February 26th.  This will be an opportunity for our church family to be retrained or have the training for the first time in sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  In the Bible, Acts 1:8 calls for believers to witness here, there and everywhere under the power of the Holy Spirit.  One of our main goals for this fellowship is to reach others for Jesus Christ, and we seek to prepare His children to do just that. Mark your calendar for this training; it will be from 5-7pm Sunday, February 26th.

The second major event we will have is hosting a sports banquet called “Meet the Pros.” This is a ministry of Sportsmen’s Outreach and will be led by professional fisherman, Glenn Chappelear.  He will be bringing other professional fishermen with him and it will be quite a night of fun and fellowship along with great food.  Both men and women of our congregation who are interested are invited and others from our community will be coming as well.  The date of this event is Saturday night, March 3rd. Mark this one down because we will need helpers for that night as well.

Our prayer is that any event that we have here at the church we will always seek to reach people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Please pray that every event scheduled at NABC will glorify and honor the Lord.

 

From Your Pastor, December 2011

December is the time of reflecting on the coming of the Savior of the world.  Jesus was born in Bethlehem and as John said, Jesus came unto His own but His own did not receive Him. (John 1:11) Even though His own didn’t receive Him Paul says in Galatians 4:4-5, “But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, 5 to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons.” The time for the Savior to be born was right according to the Lord of heaven and earth. He wanted His creation to be able to become His sons and have all the rights that sons are to have. And yet again, John says in John 1:14, “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” Not only did God want us to become His sons and receive all the blessings that go with that privilege, but He wanted us to see His glory through Jesus who came as a baby born in Bethlehem and come to experience His grace and to know His truth as we come to full knowledge of who Jesus is to all mankind, their Savior and Lord.

In this season it is my prayer that you will experience Jesus fresh and new again and know that He is truly your Savior and Lord.  He desires for us to recognize His glory and to participate in His grace day after day.  Not only does knowing the truth set you free but to know the Truth will provide you and me the way to get to the Father in heaven through the Son, Jesus Christ.

Celebrate the birth of Jesus with us this season over and over again as we worship and share our faith with the community of Anderson.

From Your Pastor, November 2011

Being a part of a family that loves God and one another like North Anderson Baptist Church does, makes Lynda and me thankful more and more every day.  God has blessed us so much.  I am so grateful for the church staff we have, God has provided for our fellowship such capable servants of God which has blessed me immeasurably.  It is my desire that like the one leper out of the ten who was healed by Jesus that we come back to Jesus regularly to say thank you for all He has done for us.  We who are believers in the Lord Jesus Christ should be so thankful for our eternal salvation given to us freely through His death and resurrection.  Our present sermon series, “Truths You Can Live By” (Truths That Will Change Your Lives), is designed to help each of us to know the main doctrines of the Christian faith.  It is my prayer that we will not only learn but we will apply what God has shared with us to our everyday living.
May God give you a wonderful Thanksgiving season!

Bill

From Your Pastor, October 2011

Dear Church Family,

Lynda and I want to thank you once again for your great support for our family.  Our trip to Florida for Erica’s wedding was wonderful.  We want to invite the whole church family to a “Wedding Celebration” for Ian and Erica (Rigsby) Kent on October 15, from 3 to 5 pm at the Bleckley Inn, downtown Anderson.  Please come and celebrate with us this joyous occasion.

Our church family has been very faithful to give to wonderful special needs and ministries throughout the year but we cannot forget to continue to give faithfully to the budget needs.  Our building is paid from the budget general fund as well as the personal expenses and basic needs of the church.  It is absolutely necessary that we meet those obligations.  Many of you think that if you give to the special offering then you can lower your “regular” gift or take from your tithe to give to the other need.  That is so dangerous for you and the church.  Last year you voted to support the budget with your tithes and offerings and that vow you made needs to be honored first.  When Lynda and I give to a special offering or a mission opportunity it is over and above what we promised to give to the church’s budget. We must be faithful to support the work of the Lord Jesus through the church.  Thanks for hearing my heart.

Recently I have been asked to preach a revival for Barker’s Creek Baptist Church.  We will begin on Sunday morning October 9 and go through Wednesday October 12. Please pray for me that I will listen to the Lord’s voice as He prepares my heart for His mission and I preach with boldness and in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Serving with you in His Kingdom,

Bill

From Your Pastor, September 2011

Dear friends,

I recently was reminded through a message on the radio that the gospel is the vehicle by which we all find new life in Jesus Christ.  The pastor’s responsibility is to preach the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ because through the gospel people are changed and are given hope in this world so life will make sense and have purpose.  I commit to you that I will continually seek to make the gospel as simple as it is presented in the Word of God and as often as I stand to speak for the Lord on any given Sunday. God has saved me and given me new life and purpose and I have seen Him do it for multitudes of believers over the years.

It is my prayer that we as believers in Jesus Christ will be able and willing to share the gospel at the drop of a hat to anyone we meet and talk with.  It is the power of God to salvation (Romans 1:16) then each of us needs to have the skills and willingness to tell the gospel story to anyone we meet and to those whom God leads us (1 Peter 3:15).

Lynda and I want to thank each of you for your warm and loving words and thoughts regarding the marriage of Erica and Ian.  Sometime in the near future we will have a reception here for them and you are invited to come and meet the newlyweds.