Last year was a difficult time for the church as it coped with my 6 month sabbatical after my heart attack. I am so grateful to all the leaders for their dedication and in particular to Neil for coordinating things so faithfully whilst I was away. We are truly blessed by the leaders God has given us.
2018 Vision Bible Theme – Worship
We have just finished our bible theme of Holiness. It has been very rewarding as we deepened our understanding, awe and joyful appreciation of God’s majestic transcendent moral perfection:
“God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5). It seems a natural progression for us to spend 2018 studying the only reasonable response when faced with our majestic holy God, which is to worship Him. We will start with a sermon series on Acts 17 where the apostle Paul explains who God is to a crowd of Athenians, then we will be heading into the Old Testament to look at some examples of faithful worshipers such as King David, studying his spirituals songs of worship and pausing at Psalm 51 to pick up on the mini theme of Repentance. The Old Testament prophets Jonah and Joel, and Paul, John and Jesus’s teaching on worship will feature later on in the year. May God open our minds and hearts to worship Him more passionately and faithfully ‘in spirit and in truth’. During last year’s Weekend Away we studied the Fear of the Lord and the Bible’s answers to our fears. The talks are available as 4 videos on Youtube and will soon be available as a book from Amazon and our book stall. This year’s church Weekend Away will enable us to go deeper into one aspect of Worship and Repentance.
This year’s vision isn’t just a bible theme. It also includes a fresh, more intentional approach to how we welcome people with a welcome table, welcome packs and friendly church welcomers, and a strategy to provide more space for growth in numbers and develop leadership skills – a new evening service at 6pm starting on April 1st Resurrection Sunday evening. We have helpfully simplified the 2018 Vision into 3 Ws: Worship, Welcome and Worthwhile Growth.
Tonight you will have the opportunity to hear more about all 3 Ws as well as hear from people who are going to be baptised, from Toi about a new bible study we are starting called Bible Matters, from Ana about Sunday evening music, Neil about our Bible Study strategy and one2ones, from new Christians and also from our Treasurer and her assistant.
None of the goals in our vision will be possible without a committed congregation dedicated to the church in prayer, in financial giving and time. If you regularly attend the church then we need you to pray regularly for wisdom, unity and health for our leaders and for God’s spirit to bless His Word for the salvation and growth of many. We also need you to generously and cheerfully give to support the vision and commit to weekly serving in one of the 2 services. If you are a guest tonight, we need your prayers and welcome any financial gifts if you feel prompted by God.
May God use it to bring glory to His and our Saviour.
Your servant in Christ,
Pastor Luciano (Arni) Pelosi
Arni Pelosi was the Senior Pastor of Longheath Baptist Church for 9 years and has been in Church Leadership for over 18 years.