What an amazing Vision Sunday! It was thrilling to see our church family come together to celebrate all that God has done through Austin Baptist Church, and all that He will continue to do through this local body of Christ for years to come. I especially want to thank a few people who helped make it such a special day in the life of our church. Thank you to Wayne McDonald, Demetrius and Janis Loukas, and Russell Walters for helping share ABC’s story through our amazing testimony video last Sunday. I’d also like to thank Lauren Ortiz, Carlos Jordan, and Christina Mendoza for putting in countless hours to get us transitioned to our new state of the art website. Derek Tackett and his facilities team worked hard as well to get all the new signage properly installed, and Jennifer Wilcoxson did a fabulous job feeding all of us at the celebration breakfast. Thank you BFG leaders for showcasing your classes and thank you to our hospitality team for making everyone feel welcomed in our Heritage Hall. It truly was a great day in the life of our church, and I appreciate every person who helped make it happen.
Of all the exciting things that transpired last Sunday, perhaps the 10am breakfast was my personal favorite. While the food was indeed fantastic, I wouldn’t say that specifically was the reason why I enjoyed the event so much. What made it great was the people. I loved seeing both of our worship services come together as one united church during that hour. The building was electric, and it was encouraging to watch our people give hugs, laugh, and sincerely enjoy one another’s company as the body of Christ. That kind of love and fellowship is so needed in this world right now. Our city is filled with far too many people who are isolated, frightened, and disconnected from others. As we talked about last Sunday, this city on a hill must always be a place of refuge for people to run to. We must always be a safe place that people can find the community and support their soul’s need. The author of Hebrews instructs us to be a church “not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near” (Hebrews 10:25). The gathering of God’s people is vital for our hearts, but sadly many across our city have forgotten that and are in the habit of neglecting it. I hope you were reminded like I was last Sunday that we truly do need each other.
I believe that God positioned us on this hill so that we can be used by Him to shine in Austin, Texas. He has blessed us beyond measure, but we have been blessed to be a blessing to others around us. For the next four weeks, we’re going to look at ways we must shine as this city on a hill. This Sunday, we’re going to see that before we can shine into the lives of others, we first must let God shine His light into us. God’s Word has transformational power. The more we get into this Book, the more the Book gets into us. God’s word convicts, guides, empowers, and changes us so that we can become the difference makers He made us to be. Because of this, we must remain firmly committed to preach and teach the Word of God at ABC. Scripture reminds us, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105). This weekend we will see that God’s Word must always remain as the centerpiece of our church, but we must also be sure to make it the centerpiece of our individual lives. I encourage you to invite a friend to join you this Sunday for worship. This series is a perfect opportunity for you to invite someone to come and experience the fellowship of ABC and hear about what God is doing up on this hill. Come expectant, and I look forward to seeing you this Sunday.