Hey there everyone! Haven’t added to the blog here since before Christmas, so I thought it would be a good time early in this NEW YEAR to check in. We are headed into the last weekend of January – hard to believe that four weeks have zipped past us already. We announced yesterday that we have finished the first month with hiring our NEW TEAM MEMBER & Next Generation Director, Stacey Smith, who will be with us beginning February 3, 2019! Can’t wait for Stacey and his family to join us.
I have mentioned a few times the last few months that I have felt like God is preparing us for something big…something special for His kingdom and glory. I haven’t been able to figure all of it out as of yet, but I know Stacey and his family coming is part of it. I know continued, steady, growth is part of it. We have grown from a 2017 weekly attendance average of 165 a Sunday to 215 a Sunday in 2018. We have had Sundays upwards of 230-240 that were not Easter or Christmas. A more important number for me is that we have had around 25-30 nursery – elementary school children in attendance on average! We have grown our second service from a weekly average attendance of 60 in 2017 to 110 in 2018. Every Sunday we see new faces, and more and more of them are not going through a revolving door…they are sticking around.
What are we doing? What is the magic that we have captured in a bottle? How can your church get the growth we are getting? I don’t think it is anything earth shattering. We are growing slowly but steadily because we are transparent, We love people, and we hold scripture as our truth from God. That’s it.
No smoke and mirrors…no laser light show. No promises of financial prosperity. No books being written on how to do it yourself! Is it a NEW APPROACH…no, I don’t think so.
Transparency – If you are reading this I want you to know we are not perfect. We are 250-ish sinners who have been saved by the grace of Jesus Christ. Of all the sinners, “I am the worst” the Apostle Paul wrote. We don’t have it all figured out. We stumble. We struggle. We have people who are fighting depression and anxiety. We have people who are working with the Holy Spirit to overcome addictions. We have people who have recently lost loved ones and are grieving. We have folks who are struggling with identity issues, sexual impurity, and the list goes on and on. We have folks who are going through their first, second, or third battles with Cancer. We have others who are just struggling with aging. If you are struggling with life, you belong with us…not to be judged, or ridiculed or picked on…but to become one of us…one of our family! We are certainly a bunch of misfit toys! But the joy that we live in and the peace that sustains us comes from the fact that Jesus has cleaned us up…washed us clean of sin by spilling his blood. We are made righteous by his sacrifice!
Love – I know…an overused, misunderstood, and abused word. We love tacos, or we love our football team, or we love our new car! Our modern lifestyle has sucked the life out of a word that once meant something special…Hesed – in the Hebrew – Agape in the Greek. Love without condition. God’s love. At Brady Lane Church we do our best to display love, through the work of the Holy Spirit in us. The fruit from our relationship with the Holy Spirit of God, and with Jesus Christ our intercessor, and the Father – brings that unity of brothers and sisters from every tribe, tongue and nation. We have folks who are Hispanic, we have African Americans, we have folks who are from Korean and Japanese descent. We have had folks who have joined us for seasons who have either lived in or are from countries like Taiwan, Ethiopia, Dominican Republic, Nigeria, Haiti, and soon Indonesia. We support missions in our community, our state, our country and the world. We serve anywhere between 150-175 families twice a month with our food pantry. We minister to 30 neighborhood families with our Good Shepherd Learning Center preschool. WE provide Grief Recovery Classes, Financial help classes, and Bible classes. We have fellowship events within our congregation regularly but we also have big events that we invite our whole community to be a part of. We don’t do any of it because we are special…we do it because of God’s love growing up in us through the work of the Holy Spirit! And we want to share that LOVE with YOU!
Truth – You have a truth, I have a truth, she has a truth, he has a truth! We all have a personal truth that we hold to, that is usually marred with our own personal opinions, experiences and upbringing. At Brady Lane Church we are working to make sure our personal truth lines up with GOD’s Truth…and His Truth is found in His Word…Jesus. Scripture helps us understand where God wants us to go and what He wants us to do…but our understanding of God’s truth comes from a daily interaction with God’s word. Do we do it perfectly…are all 250 of us in it everyday…again…TRANSPARENTLY…no. But I do believe we have a growing number of folks at BLC who are trying harder and harder to keep that commitment to living in a relationship with God through His Word. Psalm 119:115 says that God’s word is a lamp unto my feet and light unto my path. I shall hide it’s words in my heart, that I might not sin against God. God’s Holy Word is our Truth… and we hold up His Truth. We don’t apologize for God’s commands. We don’t back away from difficult topics. We don’t shudder under the weight of worldly popular opinion. God is who we have to answer to in the end. As one collective body we say…as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD! That’s it.
Are you looking for a NEW LIFE? Are you looking for a church family. Are you looking for a drama free zone. Are you looking for a bunch of goofballs and misfit toys that you can add your distinctive gifts and love to? Are you looking for a place that cares about you – not your money, (we are a debt free church – your giving is between you and God…we don’t care to know your business), we care about your family becoming part of our family. Are you looking for a place to worship God by singing traditional hymns? Are you looking for a place to worship God by singing contemporary praise music? Are you looking for a place to worship, and you don’t care what kind of music we play? We have it all…come and check us out!
You are welcome! You will be greeted at the door by some awesome people with beautiful smiles. You will be given a gift from us to you, and you will be shown where things are by our wonderful Guest Services Team! Stop running from God. Stop trying to figure it out. Come join us sinners who have been saved by Jesus!
WELCOME, to Brady Lane Church!