Paslay2The Pastor's Pen
February 2018 Edition from the Proclaimer Newsletter

This article is being written one week before Lorie and I along with thirty others board a plane that will ultimately land in Israel.  And this article maybe the most enjoyable of all.  By now, you have heard that Grove’s First Baptist Church has finished what it started.  With the Lord’s help and guidance, we are now debt free as a church.  The big albatross is off our necks.  Our “Along the Way” Fund is officially complete.  PRAISE THE LORD!

Now that we have “finished what we’ve started,” we need to embrace the moment and begin to ask God what He wants for us now as a congregation.  Recently, a question has been asked as to whether the church has a master plan for the next five or ten years.  The simple answer is “No.”  As your pastor, I have been focusing on our present ministry and getting rid of our debt.  So forgive me for not being on top of a plan for the near future.  But I want you to know that my heart’s desire is to lead us to embrace the plan that God has for us.  We need a clear direction from the Lord and we need to come together as a body that seeks to worship and glorify God.  What we do in seeking God’s will is of utmost importance for the health of the church.  I am asking you to pray for your pastor, the staff, the deacon body and a Long Range Planning Committee that the church has put in place to look to the future needs and plans that will guide our path in the days and years to come.

When Grove’s First Baptist Church swapped properties with Cornerstone, it was evident that we were gaining worship space but were losing educational space by over half from our previous church site.  As we enter the second month of 2018, we cannot continue to have Sunday School classes in hallways and in the fellowship hall and grow as God desires for us.  We must address our space issues but do so with the wisdom from God.  If we are to fulfill the Great Commission from Matthew 28, we must be willing to dream and plan for the future.  I am asking you to dream and help us plan.  That, my friend, will cost us nothing.  We need time to pray and seek the Lord!

I can assure you as your pastor that I will not lead this church to go into a suffocating debt that we found ourselves in when we agreed to swap properties with Cornerstone.  When I was pastor in Henryetta, we engaged in a building program to build a Family Life Center with a commercial kitchen, classrooms and an office complex.  We raised a significant portion of the money and agreed as a church not to begin until we agreed on a plan.  We built a very functional building for $925,000 and were able to be debt free three years after occupying the building.  God wowed us with some wonderful ways to bless the church financially.  I believe He can do the same and even more at
Grove’s First Baptist Church.  I am excited about what is in store for us as a church.  Certainly, the
enemy will do everything he can do to divide us and get us off track.  That is why prayer must be
the starting point!  Will you join me?  May God richly bless you!

Bro. Jim


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