It’s hard to believe that I have been preaching for a month. Time sure flies, right? Even though I have been sharing some insights into who I am through the sermons each week, I’m sure that some folks are still wondering, “Who is this guy?” Well, I’d be glad to sit and chat about where I came from and how Sandi and I met (especially over a cup of coffee), but let me share some of the thoughts I have for the near future of ministering with the Athens Church of Christ.
As a minister in the church of Christ, I recognize that this is the body of Christ, called to do the work Jesus has called us to do as a body. That work is to make disciples (Matthew 28:19, 20), who in my understanding are people called to love God and love people (Matthew 22:37-40) and who answer that call by accepting Jesus as their Lord and Savior and by being baptized by immersion for the forgiveness of their sins (Acts 2:38). That’s just the broad strokes, and in the near future, I anticipate forming a “new members” class that will answer the question, “What kind of church is this?”
My immediate goals are, first, to preach about forgiveness and salvation through Jesus and to encourage the body of believers; second, to get to know the members and regular attenders (forgive me, please, I am not as good with names as Sandi is); and third, to meet with the leaders and determine where this congregation needs to go and how we ought to get there and then start moving in that direction. I am not one to implement change just because it’s change, but I’m not one to hold on to the past and traditions just because “that’s the way we’ve always done it,” especially if they get in the way of making disciples. I don’t believe in “silver bullets,” and I don’t believe that any individual can make or break the church, but I do believe every member must do their part (Romans 12:4-6).
This is a new start for me and my family and for Athens Church of Christ. We have the same goals that have always been the goals of the church: to make disciples and to grow in our faith and knowledge of Jesus (Ephesians 4:11-16). I look forward to meeting each of you and to figuring out how we can lift up Jesus in our community and grow as the body of Christ.