In the last two months some new developments have been taking place behind the scenes. We are now able to share them publicly. All the leadership at Central is very pleased to announce that we are about to benefit from a partnership between the BMA of Mississippi Missions Department and the BMA of America Missions Department.
As you know Central began as a church plant out of Charity Baptist Church in Ward, AR. Charity has supported us through prayer and financial means. They are an incredible Mother Church! The Mt. Calvary Association came by the side of Charity to help us financially on a monthly basis. For the most part, the two have been the sole support of the plant for the last two years. That is the way we all felt led to proceed with this plant and it has been in that capacity that the plant has progressed.
Over the last year, Central’s ministry has grown. With the growth more time must be invested into its people, and more funds are needed. This is where the additional help comes in from both missions departments.
Bro. Larry Barker, Director of North American Church Planting, has offered to provide a stipend to me to enable me to invest more time on the field. I will remain bi-vocational keeping my job with the Desoto County School system driving buses. However, I will be laying aside my work with Lee Boys Lawns in order to devote more time to Central. This stipend will replace funds that my lawn company provided freeing me from the obligations of that work load.
My schedule is so very crazy when I am mowing, driving buses, and trying to do ministry. From March 15th thru May 27th, and August 1 thru October 31, I would normally, drive, mow, shower, drive again, and come home to put in two to three hours for Central each week day. The weeks seem like days when that schedule is in full swing. My family and I have spent the last three years in lawn mowing, so this will be a change for our lives. I’m so glad that God gave us that avenue to serve our community while making a living as well. This stipend will make our families life less hectic, and give me more quality time for my family and Central.
Bro Larry Geraldson, Director of Missions in Mississippi, was contacted by Bro John David Smith from the national office and ask to give consideration to being in a partnership with them that would help Central. Larry Geraldson and I have had conversations about church panting as far back as December of 2011. We have all had conversations about this partnership and meetings over the last few months. Last Thursday I meet with the Missions Committee of the BMA of MS and Bro Geraldson sharing the vision of Central and our short history. Those men received me so graciously, heard our story and then unanimously approved a recommendation for Central to receive $1000 in supplemental support as ministry funds on a monthly basis for a year. This will help us in all our overall efforts in this church plant.
I am so grateful that this door has opened to me from the national work and that Mississippi has recommended these funds to benefit Central in particular. Neither steps have been finalized. Each must be approved by the respective associations. The national association will vote on this matter when it meets in April, and the Mississippi association will vote on this matter when it meets in May.
An on looker may think “This is really abnormal!” “Why would a church in northwest Mississippi, have a mother church in central Arkansas, a local association in northeast Arkansas, the state association of Mississippi, and the national work all helping them?” It’s simply. Everyone involved has followed the leadership of the Holy Spirit and have not been territorial, but rather kingdom minded. It is an awesome step that Central gets to be involved in as we are one of the first plants to benefit from such a unique partnership.
We have also just received news that Bethel Baptist in Fulton, MS will be supporting us $395 monthly thru the end of the year. We are so grateful for their help and contribution to this ministry as well! They recently made a visit to Central, and we were so blessed by their doing so!
The work continues with help from others…
TIME TO TOIL
Colossians 1: 28, 29