Michael and Coleen Brandt live in South Dakota where they have a ministry to help struggling pastors and churches which he calls “Shepherding the Shepherds”. Michael was a keynote speaker at the Gideon Banquet in Raleigh on May 5. Desiring to worship in a local church near his hotel on Sunday morning, he inquired where he might find one. He just happened to be speaking to members of my former church, Westwood Baptist in Cary. They recommended that the Brandt’s come to Crabtree Valley Baptist Church. You may remember that they visited with us on May 6.
Our own Cheryl Jones visited and joined Crabtree Valley Baptist Church because her sister, Linda and brother-in-law Willie Burns of my former church, First Baptist Morehead City, recommended that she come. Risa Poniros, our beloved Music Director, is with us today because Charlie Jones recommended her to us.
Most recently visitors have joined us in worship and to our joy some have come because members of our church invited them. That is the way it should be. These are identifiable examples of how a “live and well church” functions. Recommendations work. Introductions are important.
Andrew, one of the disciples of Jesus is only mentioned a few times in the New Testament but each time he is introducing people to Jesus. First, he introduced his brother Peter to the Lord (John 1:39-42). Then, he introduced the lad with the five loaves and two fishes to Jesus (John 6:8-9). Finally, he introduced the Greeks to the Lord (John 12:20-22). There is no more important work in the world than recommending people to Jesus and to his church.
Andrew was not in the category of a Paul or even his brother Peter. He was just an humble fisherman, He was just an ordinary person like you and me. Yet, he intentionally chose to introduce and recommend people to Jesus. We have no record that he ever preached a sermon but he brought his brother Peter to the Lord and Peter’s sermons brought many souls to Christ. We can safely believe that Andrew continued to find joy in recommending and introducing people to Jesus.
I encourage you to intentionally recommend and introduce people to Jesus and to Crabtree Valley Baptist Church. If we will commit ourselves to this important work, we may be amazed at how God will bless our ministry.
In His love, Charles