These days we hear so much about “church wars.” These wars have weakened the witness of the church and in turn have driven people from the church. You have heard it before, “God’s soldiers are the only army who shoot at one another.” I am blessed to be pastor of Providence Baptist Church. These are days when we need to hear positive words about the church.
I love Providence people because of their focus on Jesus Christ. Recently I have been reading Jim Wallis’ book, “On God’s Side”. In this very powerful and insightful book Wallis states, “Who we think Jesus is will determine the kind of Christianity we have.” For the past several months my study has focused on who Jesus was, who Jesus is, how he loved and how his disciples must practice their faith in Him. I see in Providence a people who express gratitude each day for Jesus and His amazing grace that saves from sin and to a full and meaningful life. I also see in Providence a people who believe as Christians we are to follow the teachings of our Lord. Providence is an example of a fellowship of believers who affirm the importance of a personal relationship with Christ that results in a ministry to others, ministering to their physical, emotional and spiritual needs.
I love this congregation of believers because they believe the words of the beloved disciple John, “the word became flesh and dwelt among us.” Each day I see them “fleshing out the Gospel”. They do this as they reach out to the least of these. From the local community to regions beyond these people take seriously the call to be on mission for Christ ministering to the total person. They feed those who are hungry. They help those who are broken find healing in the broken places. They believe they are called to be on mission for Jesus Christ in word and in deed.
Providence Baptist blesses my life as I see people experience grace in our fellowship. Providence is a place of grace. In this fellowship people from all walks of life find help, healing and hope. We are a diverse people and in our diversity we find great strength. We have discovered that we are one in Jesus Christ. We are a people who believe as we receive grace we share grace.
I must hasten that I love Providence because we are a church in process. We are not perfect by any means. We have our flaws. There are many things that we should do that we do not do. In the words of the poet, Robert Frost, “We have promises to keep and miles to go before we sleep.” We are on a journey. We are accompanied by our Savior and Master Teacher, the Lord Jesus Christ. He walks with us and gives us the assurance of His presence. He forgives us when we fail to be what He would have us to be. We live in His grace and know that His grace is sufficient for all our sin. Yes, we are on a journey. Come visit with us and I believe you will discover that there is a church in the country that is very special. A PLACE OF GRACE AWAITS YOU.
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