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Pastor Post - August 18, 2021

It is great to be back home, after a very fruitful trip overseas.  Thank you, church, for your steadfast support of missions.  You can feel great about the people we are sending and the work they are doing! 

As the dog days of August are winding down, it is time to look toward the Fall, which will be an exciting one for our FBC family.  We are calling this Fall “Onward Together.”  After all the trials in our nation and world over the past eighteen months, we are looking onward toward the horizon, where the sun is rising, and the best is yet to come.  How do we know that?  Because the Son is risen, and is making all things new! And we are looking onward together.  COVID forced people apart…it distanced people from one another.  But the church is not about distance, but togetherness.  

Toward that end, here are some things to look forward to this Fall: 

September 12th will be an exciting day for FBC.  We are calling it “Onward Together Sunday.”  Beginning that day, we will resume gathering together in one service, at 10:30.  Sunday School will also go back to its previous time, 9:00. There are many advantages to this.  Gathering in one service allows people to be together.  After all the separation of the last eighteen months, we feel this is much needed.  You’ll get to see people you haven’t seen and meet people you haven’t met. When people are baptized and babies are dedicated, the whole church will be there to celebrate.  Sunday School classes having more time will also be a huge help.  It enables more time for fellowship, prayer, and teaching, and plenty of time to come into the sanctuary and mingle and connect with people before the service begins.  We renovated our facility and created wonderful spaces for people to see each other, so let’s take full advantage of it.  The 9:00 time for Sunday School also expands the teaching options for classes.  There are many Bible studies that include videos and discussions around the Scripture that take at least 75 minutes to do well.  Having Sunday School at 9:00 and worship at 10:30 enables classes to do studies like that, with time to get into worship by 10:30.  It expands our options as far as the kinds of studies we can do.  And if your study does not take quite that long, that’s fine too – having a little extra time for relationship-building and prayer will be a blessing. 

September 15th is also a big date.  That night, some great adult discipleship classes will be starting up, as well as Awana for kids and MIDWEEK for students.  Loving care for preschoolers as well.  All our classes and ministries will begin at 6:00pm and wrap up by 7:30pm.  This makes for a clear alignment for families.  There will be a terrific women’s study on prayer, and another adult class called “The New Testament You Never Knew.”  We will say much more about both in coming weeks.  Also on September 14th, Bible Study Fellowship for women will begin.  This will be a Tuesday morning study (9:30-11:00am) on Matthew.  Ladies, BSF is wonderful.  It includes large group teaching, small group discussion, and a program for preschoolers. 

But before any of these exciting things, we want to gather for prayer. September 11th is a solemn day for our country.  This September 11th will be the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, and it will be especially sobering given the recent events in Afghanistan, where the Taliban regime is once again in charge, brutalizing Christians, women and girls, and becoming a training ground for the same kinds of terrorists who carried out the 9/11 attacks.  These are extremely heavy times for our nation and our world, and God’s people need to pray. Toward that end, we will have a special service of prayer and worship on Saturday evening, September 11th.  It will be a time of pouring out our hearts in prayer for our nation and our world, and a time of asking God to pour out His Spirit on our church as we enter a new church year.  I hope you’ll join us that night.  And I want to encourage you to begin praying now for all these things. 

This Sunday we will open God’s Word and dig into Ephesians 4:1-6, as we talk about “Unity in the Body.”  See you then!  

By His Grace, For His Glory, To The Nations,  

Dr. Thurman Hayes, Jr.