We had another good weekend at our church, even though Wes is out of town. We had an assistant pastor and his family from Greater Vancouver Baptist Church come over to preach for us. He did an excellent job of preaching, and our song leader did great leading our service in my husband's absence. It's great to have people who can step in and carry on when the pastor is away!
We had a couple of visitors yesterday, but our overall numbers were down due to sickness (get well, Carrol!) and some of our members having to work. Our Common Grounds coffee fellowship went well, and our ladies seem to really be getting involved with bringing in the food for it. We are using this as yet another way to promote the relationships among our members, along with a friendly welcome to our visitors. Wes has read and is convinced that many people come to church for the relationships they find there. If there is no potential for friendship, they are not likely to return. And getting them there is a key part of seeing them get saved - although a personal witness among your friends and relatives is important too, of course! So our coffee fellowship gives us one more opportunity to connect with people and get to know each other better.
We had the visiting pastor and his family over for dinner and to stay till the evening service, which was a lot of fun for us. They have 3 young children, all under 5 years, and they are just like our family - 2 little boys and then the baby girl. I found myself remembering my little guys, and these kiddos reminded me of so much about their childhoods! We had an increasing amount of tears as the afternoon wore on - the kids, not the parents - because some little people were afraid they might miss something if they took naps! ;) I'm sure they all slept well last night. It was quite the rousing afternoon - I had forgotten how energetic little guys are.
I especially enjoyed having some fellowship with my friend. She and I are both American girls, and her parents are from NC, so we had quite a bit in common. We also established that she graduated high school in 1997 - 14 years after I did. Ahem. I knew she was young, but didn't realize I was that old! ;)
So that was our weekend. The Lord is blessing us here at Lions Gate Baptist Church. We love our work and our people - what a joy to get to do such fulfilling work and to love doing it too!