This past week, we celebrated our first year together as pastor and people at the Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church of Jacksonville.
It is hard to believe that a whole year has past since I was installed as the pastor of SMBC. It really does seem like it was just yesterday. It has been a year in which God has proven himself faithful, as always.
I am grateful, humbled, and overwhelmed by the goodness of God in sending me to such a loving people, who appreciate the word of God, and who are willing to follow leadership, and our eager to reach lost people with the good news of Jesus Christ. The Lord could have sent me to a place where the ministry of the word is "out of season." It is the Lord's mercy that he has given me a people as the wonderful membership of Shiloh.
Our Sunday morning services were a blessed of the Lord. Particularly, the 10 AM service was very special. There were several surprises added to the order of service in celebration of my first pastoral anniversary. I don't like surprises! But these were so encouraging. My heart was so moved with gratitude for all that God has done for us. The Lord has done great things in our midst. And he is worthy to be praised!
Our music department brought their A-game as this lead us in musical praise. As always, it was good to have Genesis (children's) choir participating in our worship. It was also good to hear Ray sing again. Glad he is feeling better.
I preached on Philippians 3:12-14: "Striving to Be Like Christ." I leaned into a pitch, took one for the team, in order to get on base. The presentation did not reflect my level of preparation. Thank God his grace is sufficient and his strength is made perfect in our weakness.
Next Sunday's text: Philippians 3:15-16.
Praise God for those who received Christ and were added to the church.
Sunday afternoon, our sister church - The Bethel Institutional Baptist Church - joined us in worship. It was a privilege to have Drs. Rudolph McKissick Jr. & Sr. and the good people of the Bethel family to celebrate God's goodness with us. The Bethel praise team and choir lifts our hearts in praise. And my friend and brother, Pastor McKissick Jr., ministered a great word from Mark 2:1-11 - "The Right Kind of Noise."
Thank you, Shiloh, for your prayers, kindness, and encouragement. Your expressions of love have uplifted me in more ways that I can express.
I love you. And I daily thank the Lord for the wonderful privilege and sacred duty of being your pastor-teacher.
May the Lord grant us many years together to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ and to advance the kingdom of God on earth in this generation!
Soli Deo Gloria (To God Alone be the Glory)