Friday, April 9, 2010

I'm a Witness-Two Churches Working Together

Wow! A church that practices what it preaches! St. Paul's Lutheran Church has a vision statement which is to Love, Serve, and Grow in Christ. Our Church (Church Ablaze) has seen God's hand operating through St. Paul's generosity.
Last year, my sister in law, Alicia, happened to allow her daughters to go to St. Paul's summer program for kids called Wild Wednesdays led by Risa Powell. One day after a field trip to the zoo, Alicia got off the bus and ran into this nice man in the church parking lot. She introduced herself and they exchanged a few cordial words. She mentioned the church she attended (Church Ablaze) and that we were meeting in a hotel banquet room temporarily. Then she discovered he was the Pastor of St. Paul's Church and he told her you all should consider meeting here. Well Alicia came back and told me and I said that was nice but didn't take it immediate action.

Eventually we arranged a meeting with Pastor Wally to see the building and introduce ourselves. We were floored, not just because it was a nice facility, but the fact that Pastor Wally went and opened every room. He shared with us enthusiastically as he went from room to room showing us the potential we could have as a church. Keep in mind this was his first time meeting us and he acted like we were old friends. Eventually, we met St. Paul's president Tom Todd who is another man of God with a solid gold heart. Actually the entire staff and Exec. committee were all in favor of us coming and using their facility.

We now meet at their facility in the sanctuary at 11:00 am after their 9:30 service. We are humbled every time we gather together.
Two weeks ago was a big day for Church Ablaze and St. Paul's Lutheran Church. We had a joint service where our two local churches chose to come together in an expression of unified worship before the Lord.
  • Different churches one service
  • Different traditions one Spirit
  • Different pastors one sermon
  • Different races from one blood
  • Different songs one voice of worship
Diversity in God's Kingdom shows unity. It was so great to see our greeters working together, our ushers working together, our secretaries working together, and our worship teams singing together. We even collected offering together. WATCH OUT NOW! LOL! Pastor Wally and I decided a couple of months ago that at this service we would preach together one message. We shared on "Being a Witness" (Acts 1:1-11; Luke 24:44-49). That was a great experience from preparing together to sharing together. The amazing thing is that two preachers stood in the pulpit together and preached in 25 minutes and 32 seconds, you know that had to be Spirit Led. :-) St. Paul's has a neat practice of having the children all come to the front and have a children's lesson. It was a glorious sight to see all of the children learning together.

Part of our elder team (Clarence Hill Jr., Nathan Williams, and myself) along with Pastor Wally served communion together, that was a glorious picture partaking in the Lord's supper with our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.

What does the future hold? We have no clue all we know is that it is bigger than us. We have naturally joined forces in outreach efforts. We determined to come together to fulfill the great commission together. We are feeding and clothing the poor, serving youth and being a Witnesses for our Lord TOGETHER! Hallelujah!
Church Ablaze is a non-denominational church intent on Spreading abroad the fame of Jesus Christ. Good News is Spreading! Lives are changing!
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