Church makes ‘full circle’comment (0)
September 9, 2010
Dr. Rick Lance’s visit marks a historic milestone in our church (Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church, Ozark)suggesting we have come full circle.
The church, for several years, did not participate in Baptist life and Baptist efforts. The church experienced lean budgetary times and the leadership at the time thought it necessary to cease giving to the Cooperative Program altogether. Due to the rural location of the church, it began to operate as an island to itself and isolate itself from associational, state and denominational life.
As a result, the church became largely unaware of Baptist life, efforts and ministry opportunities outside of its four walls. As pastor of the church, I have worked to lead the church back toward participating in the Cooperative Program and larger Baptist life.
Dr. Lance, executive director of the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions, came to Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church to commemorate and celebrate the church’s newfound involvement in Baptist life.
Dr. Lance’s presence and words of encouragement were very fitting given our new involvement in Baptist life. It is easy for churches to become islands to themselves and forget that we truly are a part of something larger than ourselves.
We are a part of our local association, state Baptist efforts, our denomination and the Kingdom of God. It is too easy to see missions giving as an expenditure to cut in these tough economic times, yet nothing we do as a church is more important. This is kingdom work.
I see it as vitally important for our churches to tap into the wonderful resources available to us through the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions. We are already planning on having state missionaries come to assist us with areas in need of improvement within our church.
Pastor Craig B. Bailey
Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church