We were so encouraged on Sunday as Joey, one of our workers in Central Asia, talked to us at the beginning of the service about work with his particular unreached people group. The progress being made, so that there are two small groups of these believers meeting for worship in their own language, is reason to give thanks for the mercy of the Lord. I’m thankful that Joey and his family were finally able to be with us in our Sunday gathering since we have prayed for them regularly for many years in our corporate worship.
We have four special “happenings” over the next four Sundays. On August 6th we’ll have our monthly Shepherding Groups gathering for a meal and fellowship. These monthly get togethers have strengthened relationships with one another over the years. I’m thankful for the body’s faithfulness in those times.
August 13th we will commission Mitch and Sara Kimbrell as they prepare to head to Vermont where they will be trained at NETS in Williston, VT (New England Training and Sending Center http://www.thenetscenter.org/) for planting a church in New England. We’ve enjoyed Mitch and Sara and their daughters during their short time at South Woods. Mitch has assisted me in teaching the “How to Interpret the Bible” class on Sunday mornings as well as helping out in our Wednesday STINT classes. Following the morning service we will have a New Members Luncheon at our home.
August 20th will be Sunday School Promotion Day when many of our kids will move up to new classes. We will also begin the study of the book of Isaiah in Sunday School. Our teachers have met each week under Jim Carnes leadership and worked through Isaiah while the adult and youth classes have worked on studying and interpreting the book of Micah. Let’s pray for our teachers as they begin teaching this book that we often call the gospel in the Old Testament.
August 27th we’ll have baptism at the conclusion of the worship service. That’s always a joyful time of celebration. That afternoon we will engage together in service in our community in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ through Mercy for Memphis.
Speaking of the How to Interpret the Bible study through Micah, I’m encouraged each week by the attentiveness and faithfulness of our group. We’ve continued to fill the tables, shuffle with one another for a favorite commentary, and then work through the given text to understand it grammatically, historically, and theologically. We aim to grasp the Christ-centered focus of the text each week. I’m so thankful for the way that this group hungers to understand God’s Word!
If you have some interest in doing some intensive study in a number of theological subjects, maybe even for credit at Southeastern or Southern Seminary, then take a look at the Founders Study Center. You can get more information about these opportunities for study here: http://founders.org/study-center/
Also, let me encourage you to join us for the National Founders Conference hosted by South Woods, October 3–5. You can get more information and register here: http://founders.org/events/2017/10/2017-national-founders-conference/
We’re almost at the end of First John, with this coming Sunday as the scheduled conclusion. Thank you for following along as Matt Sliger and I have sought to expound this amazingly packed little epistle week-by-week. Once again in this week’s text, the Apostle doesn’t break new ground but returns to familiar themes with renewed vigor and added depth. I hope that you find it helpful.