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Wednesday Evening: 6:30 p.m.

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Scott - First Things First

Boyd Avenue Baptist Church
1930 Boyd Avenue, Casper, WY

(307) 261-9896

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Tuesday
Jul052016

July 2016

Faithfulness.  This is a nice word that we like to use in our Christian circles.  We talk about the faithfulness of God.  We sing about His faithfulness.  We even sing about us being faithful in the song where we hear these lyrics, “May all who come behind us find us faithful.”  So I guess the question for me is what are we faithful too?  We can use words all we want, but unless there is a practical meaning then they are just words.  Unfortunately, most people are only faithful to themselves and what they need.  So what does it mean to be faithful?

We see in I Timothy 1:12 these words, “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service.”  Paul writes these words to Timothy talking about how Christ has found Him faithful.  When I think of Paul’s faithfulness, I think of the consistency in his spiritual life.  Paul was faithful because he was consistent in the way he lived.

We can look at Paul and see several areas where he was faithful and apply these to our lives.  Paul was faithful in his relationship with Christ.  Paul didn’t just follow God when it was convenient for him.  He was faithful to God at all times.  When he was shipwrecked, he was faithful.  When he was beaten, he was faithful.  When he was imprisoned, he was faithful.  Paul was also faithful to the church.  He spent many hours of his life teaching, serving, and strengthening the church.  Paul went back to the church at Antioch and shared with them what God was doing in his ministry.  Paul wasn’t one who looked for what the church could offer him, but what he could do for the church.  Paul was also faithful to his friends.  He had great influence on many people and poured himself into their lives.  His faithfulness to them was about them, not himself.  Timothy, Titus, Luke, Apollos among others benefited from Paul’s ministry.  Paul didn’t look for what these men could do for him, but was faithful to them because they were friends.

I hope that faithfulness isn’t something that we just give lip service to, but something that is real in our lives.  We live in a day, an age, and a culture that says everything is about us.  Many Christians carry this into their spiritual lives.  Faithfulness is when we are committed to another.  Christian faithfulness is when we are committed to God, His church, and His people.

 

Tuesday
May312016

June 2016

One of my favorite things about the summer ministry is working with our interns.  Over the years we have had many college students work with us to assist in our summer programs. We have seen this as a very successful ministry with many over the years as some of these students have gone on to become pastors, missionaries, music leaders, and Sunday school teachers.  Most are actively serving our God in many different professions as they participate in the ministry of their local churches.  It has been exciting to see how God has used these students for His glory.

We are excited to have two interns with us this summer. Steven comes to us from Indiana State University.  He is involved with the BCM there and is very excited to work with us this summer.  Kelley is from Kaycee and has been involved in both our church and in BCM at Caper College this past school year.  Both of these interns will be heavily involved in ministry this summer: helping with VBS, going to Haiti and Canada on our mission trips, going to Children’s camp and Summit as sponsors and many other ministries.

I am thankful for the involvement of our church family in the lives of these students.  Our willingness to bring these students on as interns gives them a safe, encouraging environment to develop their skills and gifts in ministry.  Not every church is willing to put in the resources and time to invest in students like this.  I often get to talk former interns and listen to them share about how valuable this experience was for them as they gained experience and developed skills for ministry.

For this ministry to really be as successful as possible, it is important for our church family to take the time to get to know these students. They are more than hired help for the summer, but are a valuable part of our church. Take them to lunch or have them over to your home for a visit.  Pray for them and encourage them in their ministry.  Help make this summer an experience that will have lasting impact on not only their lives, but the lives of those they minister to.

 

Tuesday
May032016

May 2016

I am thankful for the students that God has entrusted to us over the years. It really is a privilege to serve in a place long enough to be able to minister to the students of some of my former youth. We have watched several of our youth grow, some from the time they were very little.  They have participated in the children’s ministry, Christmas programs, led in worship, been involved in VBS, participated in the youth ministry, and went on mission trips. At a time when many see the teenage years as just a time to blow off and have fun, there are students who sacrificially give of their time, money and resources to share God’s love with those around them.  These students have been a vital part of our church life.

One, of many, highlights of our youth ministry is the youth-led worship service. These students work hard in preparation for leading in all aspects of the service. They will again be leading on May 15th. I am proud of these teenagers and their willingness to use the talents and abilities God has given them. I am looking forward to the challenge they will extend to us as they share God’s Word through the music and preaching.

Some of our students are now preparing for graduation and the next step in their future.  As they move from youth to “young adults” let’s not forget our responsibility to these students.  As we approach graduation, remember to pray for the seniors as they are transitioning in life.  Some are choosing colleges, looking at careers or joining the military.  God is opening new opportunities and these students deserve our prayer. 

Whether they stay in Casper and continue to be involved in our church or move on to new places, let’s encourage them to stay involved in God’s Kingdom ministry. At a time when many students who are transitioning from high school to the next stage of life are leaving the church (statistics show up to 90%) we need to help them continue to grow in their relationship with Christ.  God entrusted them to us throughout their childhood and that doesn’t end at graduation.  We still have a responsibility to these students. 

Thank you for supporting student ministry. Boyd Avenue has done an exceptional job giving our youth many opportunities to grow, develop ministry, and become adults who love and serve God. All over our country there are former students who are actively participating in their churches and shining the light of Jesus in their chosen professions. So thankful that God allows us to be a part of that. 

 

Tuesday
Apr052016

April 2016

I wanted to take the time this month to share a little about the upcoming trip to Haiti.  We are taking a team of about 15 people to spend a week in Haiti from June 18-25. This will be the first of hopefully many more trips in partnership with Haitian Outreach Ministries. During this year’s trip, we will be primarily doing light construction projects with lots of painting. Being our first time serving in Haiti, we wanted to start with something that we know we can do, but the dream is that this will be just the beginning. There can be future opportunities to do children’s ministries, major construction projects, and maybe even an opportunity to take a medical team down.

As we get closer to this mission trip, we have several ways for those who may not be going to be involved in this project. First, please pray as we prepare and then as we go.  Pray for those who are going, pray as we strive to reach our financial goals, and pray for the people of Haiti that we will be ministering to and with. Second, there will be a time when we will ask for some help with supplies to take with us. We are still looking at what we can take with us that will be of benefit in Haiti.  And finally, we do have a financial need. Pray about how you may be able to be involved on a financial level.

We are still in the neighborhood of about $8000.00 short of our trip cost.  We have some fundraisers coming up. On April 3rd we will be having a chili cook off following our morning worship services. This is a chance for you to make your favorite chili and see how it competes with others. There will be a time of tasting and then voting. The voting will be done monetarily. The chili that raises the most money will be declared the winner.  Prizes will be given to the top three.  Then on April 11 we will be partnering with Pizza Ranch for a community impact night.  Our team will be serving and bussing tables from 5-9pm that night. For each person who tells the cashier that they are there to support our group, we get 20% of your order, plus all tips left on the table.  In early May we will be having a silent auction.  We are looking for donations that we can auction off during this event. We would love your help going to local businesses and asking for donations or donating appropriate items yourself.  Our team will also be available to do work projects to help raise money. If you can, please participate in these events with us, or if you desire, make a donation to the trip.  My hope is that we can raise the money for Haiti before the yard sale so that we can use the funds from the yard sale for our Canada trip in July.

   I am so thankful for the opportunity to be a part of the ministry at Boyd Avenue.  Our church truly has a desire to be a part of the Great Commission. Thank you for all you do to help as we desire to reach our community, state, nation, and the world with the Gospel.

 

 

Tuesday
Mar012016

March 2016

One of the things that I really appreciate about working with students at Boyd Avenue is the ability we have to participate in mission trips and build partnerships around our world.  In the coming months, we will be taking three different trips that our church has some involvement. 

In March a group of college students from Casper, Sheridan, and Laramie will be heading to Dallas on Spring Break.  In June, several teens, college students, and adults will serve for a week in Haiti.  Finally, in July, a group from Boyd Avenue will take our annual trip to Calgary as we serve with our friends there.  Both Dallas and Calgary are an ongoing partnership and we are hoping that Haiti will become one.

In Dallas, we partner with Cornerstone Baptist Church.  This is a church that God is using to truly transform a community. Over the last eight years we have made five trips to assist in this ministry.  We have done numerous children’s outreach ministries both around the church and in some of the parks in surrounding communities. We have also had the opportunity to be involved as the church ministers to the homeless in the area. Several of our students have been able to gut and then remodel homes and apartments that were once used for drugs and prostitution. These buildings have been purchased for use and ministry by the church.  This year, the church has purchased three of these facilities that we have been praying for.  We will begin to remodel one of these and help clean out the other two, along with doing a park ministry for children in two parks.

The Haiti trip will be a new experience for us.  We are working with Haitian Outreach Ministries where we will most likely spend a week doing a lot of repair and painting in a couple of their compounds.  The plane tickets are reserved and our students are busy raising money to finish paying for those, the cost of the project, and for food and lodging while in Haiti. We are very excited about this opportunity and hoping this will lead into a more permanent partnership, where we can send medical, construction, and future teams to work with children.

Very shortly after returning from Haiti, we will be heading to Canada to continue our partnership with Southwinds Church. Our primary role that week will be to conduct an Upward Basketball Camp for children. We will also be involved in a variety of outreach events in the communities that Southwinds is ministering to. I am very thankful for our friendship and partnership with our brothers and sisters from Calgary. We have spent many years serving together, both in Canada and in Wyoming.  In August, they will again partner with us as they minister alongside us in both Casper and Midwest.

These mission experiences give our students the ability to see what God is doing in other places and also challenges them to carry what they learn back to our community.  The hope is that we develop a Kingdom mindset that applies to all of the Great Commission.  Join with me in supporting these trips through prayer, encouragement, and if possible, a financial donation as we see lives changed, both among the people we minister to, and among those who go.