A Potential New Ministry Partner For Harbins Church

Brothers and Sisters,

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I’ve been spending time thinking and praying about possible new ministry partners for Harbins Church.  In particular I’ve had an interest in expanding our pro life / gospel efforts.  Of course one of our members is already involved in leading a weekly ministry at Planned Parenthood in Suwanee and I want you to prayerfully consider occasionally or regularly setting aside an hour or two on Tuesdays to join Peter and other believers from other churches to lovingly serve women, men, and the unborn, all the while sharing the gospel of hope with those who desperately need it.

morningcenter-pregnancy_centerIn addition, I’ve been praying about partnering with a pregnancy resource center to find additional ways to serve more people.  My wife recently brought to my attention a ministry called The Atlanta Morning Center, that is actually more comprehensive and multi-faceted in its ministry than a resource center.

I reached out to Daphne Nicely, who is the center’s Executive Director for more information, and here is a description of the ministry in her own words:

The Atlanta Morning Center (ATLMC) is not a pregnancy center/clinic, but rather the next step in the “Pro-Life Ecosystem.”  Our mission statement is “The Morning Center exists to partner with the local Church to provide prenatal through postpartum care to moms in need, in the name of Jesus.”  Our model is to place our clinics on church campuses to utilize the body of Christ in ministry (e.g. evangelism, discipleship, mentoring, parenting classes, premarital counseling, fatherhood support…)  We desire to intentionally collaborate with pregnancy centers for them to send their most abortion vulnerable women to us and we in turn direct our patients to pregnancy centers for educational support and material assistance.

Morning Center has been operating in Memphis for 6 years and over that time has delivered 700 babies.  ATLMC is now on the front end of getting established in our city and has already secured partnerships with a number of other churches and are aiming to launch their first community prenatal clinic by the beginning of the year.  There is a desperate need for medical services as Georgia ranks last in the nation for maternal mortality and close to last for neonatal and infant mortality.  Daphne’s vision is that:

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“The Church lovingly serves those created in the image of God to ensure that pregnancy and childbirth are neither a death sentence nor detrimental to the health of babies and mothers so that they can experience abundant life.  This is an opportunity for the church to rise up and be the Church by tending to both the spiritual, emotional, and physical health of pregnant women and in so doing we will impact maternal, pregnancy, infant, and fetal health as well as influence positive birth outcomes for mothers and their babies.”  

What I also appreciate is that an important part of what they seek to provide is biblical/pastoral counseling.

Patient-Centered Perinatal Services to be provided by the ATLMC include:

Full-service Prenatal and Maternity Care (including, but not limited  to provider visits, routine lab work, and ultrasounds)

• Abortion Pill Reversal

Screening for IPV, Abuse, and Trafficking

Drug Testing and Referral

• Miscarriage Management

Partnering with Local Hospitals and Likeminded Private Practice as Delivery Partners for Childbirth

Partnering with Doulas and Midwives for Childbirth

• Education, Birthing Plans, and Birth Support

And much more!

Daphne left corporate America in 2007 for full time ministry.  Before becoming the Executive Director of the Atlanta Morning Center she served with the Atlanta Pregnancy Resource Center, and she has served internationally in Romania in orphanages, women’s ministry, evangelism, discipleship, and more. She received the designation of Life Affirming Specialist through Heartbeat International in 2012 and became certified as a Sexual Risk Avoidance Specialist (focusing on abstinence education) through the National Abstinence Education Association in March 2014.  In Jan. 2019 she received The Warrior for Life Medal presented by the Restoration Project.

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Todd Friel, host of Wretched Radio, gave this enthusiastic endorsement:

“Daphne is the perfect person to lead a pro-life ministry.  She is compassionate, patient, and passionately pro-life.  Her unwavering focus is to see babies saved, mommies saved, and God glorified.  Your investment in Atlanta Morning Center will pay dividends for eternity.”

With what I have learned so far, I am very excited and enthusiastic about the vision of the ATLMC and I am interested in learning more and prayerfully exploring how Harbins Church may partner with them in the future.

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I will be meeting with Daphne on Tuesday, September 10th, at 1pm, at the church.  You are invited to join us and learn more about this ministry and ways we might get involved in what they are doing.  If you are coming, please let me know so I can know how many to expect.  Come to learn, ask questions, and join me in praying about a potential partnership.

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Demer

 

HCBC Fall 2019 Studies Launching Soon!

It’s hard to believe, but another summer has just about ended.  Most kids are now back in school, cooler air is just around the corner (I promise!), I’m getting pumped up for Fantasy Football, and I’m especially excited that Harbins Church will be offering multiple Bible studies this fall!

Sunday, September 8th marks the official end of summer break for Harbins and I’m delighted that there will be multiple opportunities for study and fellowship for folks of all ages:

Sunday School for Kids: Treasuring Christ.  Pre k- 12 years old.  (Classes downstairs, launches Sept 8th, 9:30-10:30am)

The Treasuring Christ Curriculum is a comprehensive, unified curriculum where all of imagesthe children will be learning the same Scriptures at an age appropriate level.  The curriculum’s vision is to spread the fame of God by equipping godly generations to treasure Christ through a Gospel-centered curriculum for the church, the home, and the nations, as children and students learn the narrative of the gospel as it unfolds from Genesis to Revelation.

Last semester we studied the life and teachings of Christ in the gospel of John.  This semester we’ll conclude our study in John by looking at one of His amazing resurrection appearances.  Then we will explore Jesus from the perspective of Luke’s gospel, before moving on to some of the high points in the book of Acts.  In addition, we will once again provide for parents via email the “Connecting Church and Home” resource.   This is a great tool to help parents bridge the gap between what their children will learn the coming Sunday at church and how they can instruct their children to begin learning & living out those truths at home right now. CCH will provide discussion ideas, prayer points, and more.

Teen Study: Your Word is Truth.  A Study for Youth on Seeing All of Life Through the Truth of Scripture (Starting Sunday, Sept 8th, in the Fellowship Hall downstairs, 9:30-10:30am)

The goal of this study is that, through the work of the Holy Spirit, the authoritative Truth of the Bible might be understood and embraced so students may see and interpret all of life through the Truth of Scripture.

imagesOur hope is that students would not be conformed to the thinking of this world, but be transformed by the renewal of their minds, that by testing they might discern what is good and acceptable (Romans 12:2).  As the students grow in their own love and delight of the truth, we want to encourage and equip them to stand firm in an increasingly hostile culture, boldly and humbly proclaiming the triumphant Truth of the gospel.

Thank you so much to Cary Rosbury and Matt Pritchett taking the lead in this class!

Gospel Shaped Outreach (followed by pre-service prayer)                                        Launches Sunday Sept 8th, 9:30am, in the church sanctuary.  Led by Demer Webb and Peter Salas.

Many Christians are nervous about telling someone else about Jesus. We prefer to leave imagesit up to the preacher, or to those we see as particularly gifted for evangelism in our congregations. But all believers are called to make disciples.  In this nine-week study we won’t offer quick fixes or evangelism gimmicks. Instead, by continually going back to the gospel, we’ll get the proper motivation to work together as a church to share the gospel message with those who are lost without Christ.

You can also purchase an optional comprehensive handbook that includes daily devotionals, Bible study materials, and space for you to record your thoughts, prayers and ideas as you work through the material with your church.

Each week, after the study, we will continue the tradition we began last year of pre-service prayer which has been a wonderful, unity-building time of seeking God’s blessing and help for the worship service and for our church as a whole.

Let us know if you’re coming!  Sign up here!

Purchase the optional handbook here!

See the trailer for the study here:

 

What Did You Expect?  Redeeming the Realities of Marriage                                Launches Wednesday, Sept 11th, 7pm in the church sanctuary.  Led by Jason Sims.  If you have children, BibleKids will be offered simultaneously for kids 4-12.  

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It won’t take long for you to be disappointed in marriage. It won’t take long for your dreams to be dashed. The reality is that you can’t escape the brokenness of this world. You won’t be able to avoid the sin of your spouse.

The Bible teaches that we all bring something destructive into our relationships – sin. But as Paul David Tripp explains, we buy into the delusion that our biggest problem is outside of us. We blame our spouse. We blame our circumstances. We rarely take seriously the nature of our own sin.

‘What Did You Expect?’ challenges you to look into the mirror of God’s Word and see yourself with clarity. Maybe it’s you. Maybe you love yourself more than your spouse. Maybe you love your little kingdom more than God’s big Kingdom. When you reach that level of honesty, you’re at the edge of real good things for your marriage.

Let us know if you’re coming!  Sign up here!

After you sign up, get your FREE study guide here! (required)  

To go even deeper, click here and order the book! (optional but recommended)

For more information, view the trailer below:

 

Christian History Made Easy                                                                                                Launches Thursday, Sept 12th, at Jonathan and Sophie Hoffman’s home, 6:30pm. 1075 Galway Lane Auburn, Georgia 30011.  Led by Jonathan Hoffman

imagesDo you know the real life stories of people such as St. Patrick, Martin Luther and Augustine?  How did Constantine and Charlemagne change history?  How did the early church recognize the canon of Scripture?  How did the Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox churches come to be?  What can we learn from the doctrinal and cultural battles of the early church that can better equip 21st century believers to handle the challenges of our times? How has Christianity spread worldwide?  This study will address those questions and much more!

In this 12 week study you’ll take a fascinating tour through the most important events in Christian history from the time of the apostles to today.  Don’t worry, this study isn’t dry names and dates. It’s instead full of dramatic stories told with a touch of humor, combined with Bible study. We’ll tie in spiritual lessons believers can glean from the past, and we’ll be encouraged as we discover how God was (and still is) working in his church despite all the ups and downs.

Here’s a short trailer explaining why you should consider this study.

Let us know if you’re coming!  Sign up here!

Click here to order the required study guide!

To go even deeper, click here to order an optional but phenomenal companion book!

The Parables of Jesus                                                                                                          Launches Thursday, Sept 12th, at Mark and Katie Pierce’s home, 7pm.  624 Clarke Trail, Dacula, Georgia 30019.  Led by Mark Pierce and Matt Pritchett

During Jesus’ earthly ministry, one of the primary ways He would instruct His disciples was through parables. People would gather from far and wide in order to listen to what Jesus said about the kingdom of God, and the most common way He would explain the kingdom was in parables. But what does God want us to learn from these parables? In this series, Dr. R.C. Sproul examines several parables of Jesus, exploring the rich truths they reveal about who Jesus is and what He came to achieve through His life, death, and resurrection.

Let us know if you’re coming!  Sign up here!

Click here to purchase optional study guide!

Ladies’ breakfast in the Psalms                                                                                          Launches Saturday Sept 21st at the church, and will meet the 3rd Saturday every month.  

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Some of the richest and satisfying food for our souls is found in the Psalms.  Women of all ages (including teens) are invited to come to the church the 3rd Saturday of the month for breakfast, fellowship, and a time of exploring, discussing, and praying through a Psalm.  No homework or extra books are required.  Just bring your Bible!

To go deeper, purchase this optional book here!

Let us know if you’re coming!  Sign up here!

For our first gathering, we will be looking at Psalm 16.  If you get the optional book it is Lesson 2.

It is my prayer that these upcoming opportunities will provide you and your family great avenues for spiritual growth, learning, fellowship, mutual encouragement, and prayer.

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Demer

 

 

 

 

 

 

Take a deep dive with me into a beautiful parable

I am excited to announce a new, 6 week study launching Wednesday, April 24th, 7pm at the church, which will be an in depth examination and reflection on Luke 15:11-32, which is perhaps Jesus’ most famous parable, the story of the Prodigal Son.   That word “prodigal” can be used to describe the act of spending money or resources in a wastefully extravagant way. Certainly that describes the younger brother, who squandered his inheritance on sinful living.  But often neglected in this story is his moralistic elder brother. A right interpretation of the parable must include a consideration of this character too. But there is another character in the story as well, and he can also be described as prodigal in his actions.

Another way to define prodigal is giving something on a lavish and generous scale. And that is exactly how we can describe the father, who lavishly loves both of his wayward sons.

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I’ll be guiding a small group through a 6 week study on this parable using the Bible, and Tim Keller’s helpful book, Prodigal God, and I hope you’ll be a part of it. We will continue to have BibleKids downstairs in the fellowship hall for our younger children, but people of all ages are welcome to join us in the sanctuary as we explore Jesus’ incredible parable.

To get the most out of this study, purchase a copy of the book here.

John Piper writes that,

“The Prodigal God is…biblically faithful with fresh angularity.  That is, Keller seizes on a great truth and comes at it from an angle and with language that help us see it in new ways.

And D.A. Carson says that,

“There is more than one way to run from God and defy him.  But there is only one way back: God is so prodigal in his grace that he reaches out to humble and restore and receive both.  Few books unpack this theme with greater force than this slim volume from Tim Keller.”

View the trailer here:

If you would like to participate in this study, please sign up at the table at the back of the sanctuary or email me at demerwebb@gmail.com If you anticipate bringing your children to participate in BibleKids please let us know how many of your kids are coming. It is helpful for me and also our kids’ teachers to know whom to expect.

Again, we’ll be launching this new study Wednesday, April 24th, at 7pm.

I’m very much looking forward to taking a deep dive into this great parable with you!

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Demer

An Opportunity For Gospel-Partnership In Brazil!

The Apostle Paul joyfully wrote to the Philippian church,

I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. (Philippians 1:3–5)

How did this church partner with Paul in his gospel ministry?  Paul makes it clear that it was through their financial support (Phil 4:15).  The Bible doesn’t elevate people who go on mission over people who give to the mission.  Both are absolutely essential ingredients in God’s plan to advance the gospel of the kingdom to the ends of the earth.  This means that whenever, through Paul, an unbeliever heard the gospel, a believer was strengthened in the gospel, or a lost person was converted in response to the gospel, the Philippian congregation was a part of that!  Surely it was encouraging to that church, full of members who could not go everywhere Paul could go, that they were nevertheless participating in God’s exciting work through the apostle’s ministry.

My vision for Harbins Church is to be a congregation that is ever increasing in our partnership in the gospel around the world through our generous financial gifts.  I’m thrilled that our members recently approved a budget that expanded our missions/outreach spending.  In addition to budgeted missions expenses, the Lord will occasionally bring before us new, unplanned opportunities to invest in through one-time gifts.

imagesOzioma Obele is a close friend of one of our members at Harbins who is working with Campus Outreach in Belo Horizonte, Brazil who will be joining us for worship on Sunday, Jan. 20th.  Ozi and her co-laborers are taking the gospel of Jesus Christ to a generation of Brazilian college students living in a jaded and complicated spiritual context.  One of the ways this is happening is through a ministry called Cafe Com Prosa which means literally “Coffee with Prose.”   The concept is pretty simple.  Ozi and others regularly visit the campus of the local university, inviting students to join them for a time of conversation in a relaxed environment with music, food, and of course….lots of coffee!

Cafe Com Prosa is hosted by Ozi’s church, Comunidade Horizonte, a Reformed imagesChurch whose Pastor is a graduate from Bethlehem Seminary (John Piper, Chancellor). At any given Cafe Com Prosa event you’ll find university students and young professionals interacting with believers like Ozi over the most important topics of life.  Past topics have included secularism, skepticism, love, the meaning of life, and man’s quest for satisfaction and purpose.  And the exciting thing about this is that people are come to saving faith in Jesus Christ through these gospel driven conversations!

Ozi recalls the story of a young student named Vitor…

imagesTwo staff members met him at the Freshman Reception and invited him to the coffee house.  He…considered himself an atheist because of the hypocrisy within the Catholic Church and the Evangelical church in Brazil.  Over the years, as he became more involved, he began to do investigative studies on the person of Christ.  Last year, he went on our summer project and for the first time read the parable of the Prodigal Son.  He identified himself with the older brother and it was the first time he questioned his identity and what he believed.  This past summer, he came to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and realized that his search for identity and purpose can only be found in Him.  He was baptized in the Fall and now is a member of our local church body!

Take a peek inside Cafe Com Prosa:

When Ozi joins us for the Sunday School hour on the 20th, she will share more details about this exciting ministry and testimonies of what God is doing in Brazil.   In addition, I am asking you to prayerfully consider partnering with Ozi in the gospel ministry in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, through a one-time financial gift to help meet some immediate needs.

imagesWe’ll also have a time of corporate prayer for Ozi and Cafe Com Prosa during the main service, and we’ll take up a special missionary offering for her. Please make sure your checks are separate from your regular offering and write “Brazil” on the memo.  After the service we’ll have a fellowship meal so you can spend additional time with her.  (Yes, we’re changing the date of the January fellowship meal to the 20th!)

Please make a point to join us for the Sunday School hour on Sunday the 20th, from 9:30-10:30am to learn more about the Lord’s work in a spiritually needy place with tremendous opportunities for gospel impact!

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Demer

 

 

 

2019 Winter Studies At HCBC!

It’s hard to believe that Christmas has already come and gone!  As trees get taken down and decor gets put back into storage for another 11 months, all of us are now looking ahead to a new year, and at Harbins, a new year means new Bible studies and opportunities for growth and discipleship.  Below is a list of upcoming studies that will be launching in January that you can participate in.

The Attributes of God/Pre-Service Prayer – Launching Sunday, January 6th, at 9:30am in the Sanctuary 

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Who Does God Say That He Is?

Misconceptions about God abound. But they don’t have to. God has revealed His character in Scripture, illuminating the attributes that define Him. While we, being finite creatures, can never truly comprehend everything that God is, we should study what He Himself has said.

In this 16-part teaching series, The Attributes of God, Dr. Steven Lawson articulates a biblical understanding of divine attributes and explores how a right understanding of God can affect every aspect of our lives.

In addition, I am excited to continue pre-service prayer.  This past fall was the first time Harbins ever had a prayer time like this and from feedback I’ve received it has been very encouraging, impactful, and unity building.  In our prayer time, we will be praying for the main service, the preaching, the worship, the church, visitors, and our own hearts as we prepare for corporate worship.

Desiring God- Launching Wednesday, January 16th, 7pm, in the Sanctuary.(Parents, bring your children as BibleKids will continue downstairs!)  

(Note: our 1 Samuel study will resume at a later date either as a midweek study or Sunday morning sermon series.)

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Outside of my conversion, there have been a handful of massive, life-changing, paradigm shifting moments in my spiritual life.  One of them was in seminary when my professor introduced me to a man I’d barely heard of named John Piper.  My world was rocked as I learned through Piper that I was called, even commanded, to glorify God through the enjoyment of and satisfaction in God.  I learned that God’s highest pursuit and blazing passion was His own glory, and how that was a good thing.  After all these years I am still thinking through the implications of Piper’s “Christian Hedonism” for my own life and ministry, and I’m sure I’ll ponder these things for the rest of my life.  I look forward to pondering them with you as we explore these things together for the next couple of months.

Through open Bibles, short video clips, group discussions, and utilizing our own study guide, we will learn why pursuing maximum joy is essential to glorifying God and, in what may be surprising to some, how God is ready to pursue with all His might our pleasure in Him! The implications of this truth are discussed in regard to conversion, worship, love, Scripture, prayer, money, marriage, missions, and suffering.   I’m looking forward to some great conversation with you all as we pursue the enjoyment of God together!

To get the most out of this study, purchase a study guide here or here.

Sermon on the Mount, a  9 Week Bible Study for Ladies, starting Tuesday February 5th at 10am in the fellowship hall at Harbins (childcare provided) and Thursday February 7th at 7pm at the home of Barbara Coleman (1830 Jessica Way Winder)

What does it mean to be a citizen of the kingdom of Heaven? The Sermon on the Mount images articulates what the life of a Christ follower should look like, asking us the same questions it posed to its original hearers: How should a disciple relate to sin? To others? To the Law? How does a disciple think, speak, and act? In this 9-session study, examine the words of Jesus in-depth as He challenges us to think differently about repentance, salvation, and sanctification.  This DVD study has excellent teaching from Jen Wilkin and we will also have a great time discussing what we learn together each week as we get to know each other and God’s Word better!

Purchase the Study Guide Here!

Theology Reading Group – Systematic Theology (Date and Time will be determined based on the availability of those who sign up.  Sign up deadline is Jan. 13th)

One of the things I have a burden for is raising up leaders in the congregation and helping people develop a robust theology, as well as learning how to apply theology to everyday life.  One means I would like to do this is through the launching of Theology Reading Groups.  The idea is that I will take a group of interested members through a particular theological book, learning from it, and discussing its implications for life, church, our world, etc.  While I envision Theology Reading Groups (TRGs) as one means to develop leaders in our church, you don’t have to aspire to church leadership to be in a TRG.  This is for anyone who wants to grow deeper in discipleship through a greater understanding of God’s Word.

In the future, I’d love to see multiple TRGs at Harbins, but for now, we’ll start with one.  I’d like to take a group through all 57 chapters of Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology.  This is a big task, and will take over a year to go through.  I am envisioning reading one chapter a week, and meeting every other week to discuss what we’ve read.  Together we will explore a whole host of doctrines including:

  • imagesThe Inerrancy of Scripture: Are there any errors in the Bible?
  • The Existence of God: How can we know God exists?
  • The Trinity
  • Angels, Satan, and Demons
  • The Person of Christ and the Work of the Spirit
  • Election/Predestination
  • Church Government and Worship
  • The Millennium and the Final Judgment
  • And Much More!

I’m looking for people willing to make a significant commitment, and outside of emergencies, (or holidays/family vacations) can commit to no more than 2 or 3 absences as we explore the book.  Before I announce a particular day and time that we would meet, I would first like to determine who would like to join this group.  There will be open signups through Sunday, January 13th.  At that time, depending on who would like to join me in this study, we will work out dates and times based on the availability of those interested.  Once this group starts, it will be a closed group and you’ll be unable to join it and you’ll have to wait for another group to start in the future.  If you are interested in this, let me know your best days and times in regards to availability.  You can email me this at demerwebb@gmail.com or take advantage of the sign up sheet that will be on hand Sunday.

You can purchase the Systematic Theology book here

I am really excited about this TRG and look forward to launching soon!

I am hopeful that you can take advantage of one (or more) of these terrific opportunities for discipleship and fellowship.  I look forward to learning and growing with you in 2019!

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Demer

Help Spread the gospel in New England!

Brothers and Sisters,

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New England has a special place in my heart.  Yes, I know some of you give me grief for being a Patriots fan, but I come by it honestly.  Dana and I spent five years on assignment from the Lord in Maine, and it will always hold a special place in our hearts.  New England is very different from Bible Belt Georgia, as it’s one of the least churched regions in the country.  Long ago, men like George Whitfield and Jonathan Edwards were used by God to bring about incredible gospel growth and revival there, but those glory days are long gone.  My heart’s desire is to see a new revival in New England.  And the good news is that God has not been silent.  He is active, planting new churches, saving souls, and raising up evangelists and missionaries (both indigenous and from away) to proclaim His Name.

Kevin Sanders is one such missionary, and Harbins Church supports he and his wife Lauren on a monthly basis as they labor for the gospel in Massachusetts.  Kevin will be joining us at Harbins this weekend.  During the Sunday School hour, from 9:30-10:30 he’ll  share more about his ministry.  During the main service Kevin will be our guest preacher.  Here’s a little more from Kevin directly about the ministry and a couple of snapshots of what the Lord is doing:

imagesSeven Mile Road is a new Church Plant just 9 miles from Downtown Boston along the Charles River. The name “Seven Mile Road” comes from Luke 24 where Jesus opens the scriptures to reveal the truth of the gospel to disciples as he walks with them along the seven-mile long road to Emmaus. The name depicts our desire: to walk with people and show them the truth of Jesus. 

We’ve been gathering for public worship since September 2017 and have seen God work in incredible ways. In an area were only 2% of people know the saving love of Christ, we have been able to plant a gospel-preaching church that is making disciples who make disciples. On our one year anniversary in September, we were able to baptize two new sisters in Christ!

We met one of these ladies at our Life Explored evangelistic study. The purpose of this six-week study was to gather with non-Christians and ask “What’s the greatest gift God could give you?” Using modern-day parables and God’s Word, Life Explored shows that the greatest gift God can give us is himself through Jesus Christ. God answered your prayers for fruitfulness! 

She came to one of the classes as a self-described agnostic. She was open and honest about her struggles and questions about God, Christianity, and the Bible. She was also humble and hungry for the truth. As we walked through the content of Life Explored, she began to realize that the God of scripture is real and that his Gospel is true. God used this class and the power of his word to draw Karen to himself in repentance and faith. 

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Itinerant preacher George Whitfield who preached to thousands in Boston in 1740 said, “If I am in prison, to hear that Boston people are alive to Christ will make me arise at midnight to sing praises to God!” At Seven Mile Road, we share Whitfield’s longing to see the people of Waltham and Greater Boston alive to Christ. And we’re praising God that he is doing it!

Ways to Pray

  • Pray as we formalize our membership process
  • Pray for our brand new Gospel Community in South Waltham
  • Pray for us as we disciple new believers
  • Pray for us as we seek new partnerships for our church plant

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Here’s another way you can help.  Please prayerfully consider giving above and beyond your regular offering this Sunday to support the Sanders’ ministry.  They cannot do what they do without support from outside churches and individual believers who want to partner with them in this gospel ministry.  If God so moves you to give, just write a check separate from your regular offering and write “Sanders” on it so we know that those funds are designated for them.

I am so happy that Harbins can partner with Kevin and Lauren to further the work of the gospel in New England.  See you for worship this weekend!

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Demer

Help us find our next deacons!

Friends,

Jesus said, ” The greatest among you shall be your servant. (Matthew 23:11)

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If that’s true, then surely the deacons of our church are among the greatest in our midst.The very name, “deacon”, carries the idea of selfless service.  While I’ve always been extremely grateful for our deacons, now that I am without a team of fellow elders to serve with me, I am all the more appreciative of having these other leaders provide me with their wisdom and support as they assist me in leading the church.

With that said, I believe the time has come to add to our deacon ranks. This year Alix, while serving so well, has had to rotate off the deacon team for a season due to health concerns. In December, Todd, who has served us with excellence, will be rotating off. (We ask our deacons to take a break for at least a year after three years of service for refreshment and rest.) Therefore, I and our deacons are seeking your help as we pray about expanding the team. In addition to Todd, your current deacons are Mark, Jason, Cary, and Jonathan. Be sure to thank them for their service.

Our deacons play a crucial role in strengthening and furthering the ministry of our church. As you are involved in the day-to-day life in the church, you are in a great position to help us know who you’ve noticed as someone who may particularly be effective in such a service role.

Nomination slips are available in the back of the sanctuary, or for your convenience, you can also email your nominations to me at demerwebb@gmail.com I’d like your nominations by November 11th.

In addition, can you please pray for our deacon search?  Pray that God would guide us to find the right people to serve in this important role.  We can do nothing without His help.

Knowing what a deacon is and does, and what the qualifications for such a role are, will be very helpful to you as you prayerfully consider whom you might nominate. Therefore, please refresh yourself on the basics of deacon ministry by reading Acts 6:1-7 which I believe details the origins of deacon ministry in the early church. Read also 1 Tim 3:8-13, which describes the characteristics and qualifications of a deacon.

Next,  read this brief article from 9marks ministries: The Biblical Qualifications and Responsibilities of Deacons.

Lastly, here is an excerpt from another great article from 9marks I’ve found to be helpful….

Deacons: Shock-Absorbers and Servants

WHAT IS A DEACON?

According to the New Testament, a deacon is two things: a shock-absorber and a servant.

Deacons are shock-absorbers: the seven men chosen by the church in Jerusalem to care for widows, who seem to be precursors to deacons, were chosen to preserve unity at a time when botched administration was creating fissures in the church (see Acts 6:1-7).

And deacons are servants: their very name means servant, and their precursors in Acts 6 were chosen to handle the practical needs of the church. That way, the apostles could devote themselves to leading the church through prayer and the ministry of the Word.

DEACONS AS SHOCK-ABSORBERS

God has always intended to display his glory to the nations, in part, through the unity of Jews and Gentiles within the church (Eph 3:10), and yet it was exactly at this juncture that disunity was erupting in the early Jerusalem church.

The Greek-speaking Jews began to complain “against” the Hebrew-speaking Jews concerning the distribution of food. The church therefore chose seven men to distribute food equitably, yes, but, more than that, to restore unity where there was division. Unity-building was their primary goal; good administration was the means.

It’s notable that, when laying out qualifications for deacons in 1 Timothy 3, Paul focuses on issues of character rather than administrative skills. Accordingly, our churches should select deacons primarily for their track record of peacemaking, and only secondarily for administrative expertise. 

DEACONS AS SERVANTS

The elders are called to “direct the affairs of the church” (1 Timothy 5:17), and deacons are called to support that direction. In our churches, then, elders should make directional decisions while deacons facilitate congregational involvement to make that vision a reality.

Elders lead ministry, deacons facilitate ministry, the congregation does ministry. That, I believe, is the New Testament model, and that biblical clarity in deacons’ role and function is invaluable for promoting peace and unity in our congregations.

I hope the above information can help you as you consider what individuals would be a great fit for the role of Deacon at HCBC.  Thank you in advance for your involvement in this process.

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Demer