Angie and I have a citrus tree in front of our house. I inspect the tree almost weekly. Our citrus tree is loaded with fruit. If all goes well the next three to four months, my Vitamin C intake promises to improve. A healthy citrus tree bears fruit.
In John 15:5-8, Jesus made a similar statement about the Christian life. Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.”
What is God doing at Bradfordville? As we evaluate our church, is there any evidence of fruit? Any proofs of God’s activity? I see at least seven proofs of God’s activity at Bradfordville.
- Members are serving (and loving) one another. Many people in our church family are active in pastoral care. It’s impossible for me to make hospital visits without the patient or a family member talking about prior visits from other church members. By the way, that blesses your pastor’s heart!
- Attendance is higher this summer. Facts are our friends. I consistently study attendance numbers. How did July 2016 compare to July 2015. In comparison of the two months, worship attendance was up 18%, and Sunday school attendance was up 13%. That’s solid growth in the heart (and heat) of summer! Thank you for your faithful participation in worship and Bible study.
- Offerings continue to reach new levels. Summer months can be lean months for budget giving. However, giving this summer has been strong and healthy at Bradfordville. Comparing July 2015 to July 2016, our offerings increased 40%. To God be the glory! Thank you again for being a generous church!
- Members are engaged in the Great Commission. Great Commission churches give, pray, and go to reach the nations. As you read this blog, we have ten people on the mission field in the Dominican Republic. On Saturday morning at 4:30 am, we’ll pray and send off a second mission team to the same location in the Dominican Republic. Great Commission activity is alive and well at Bradfordville.
- Spiritual conversations are taking place. I hear many stories from you and about you. You’re talking to people about Jesus! Over the last few weeks, I heard two sets of parents talk about leading a son and daughter to faith in Christ. I heard from a grandmother about leading two of her granddaughters to Jesus for the first time. Those are precious conversations! God is using you to spread the Good News.
- Prayer is a priority in our staff meetings. Early in each Monday’s staff meeting, we share and pray over your prayer requests. Thank you for trusting us with your hurts, burdens, requests, and desires. We finish each staff meeting by praying for five Bradfordville families. It’s our aim to pray for our church family by name.
- Different generations are active in our church ministries. As I walk the hallways of Bradfordville’s facility, my heart is blessed to see children, students, and adults involved in God’s redemptive work. New ministries are being launched on a frequent basis. Our church is generationally united, not divided. It’s wonderful to see different generations teaching and learning from each other.
What other proofs do you see that reveal God’s activity? You’re always free to email me your thoughts to email@example.com. I’d love to hear from you.
Church family, thank you for loving Jesus, each other, and people in our city and around the world.
To God Be the Glory,
1 Cor. 10:31