One year ago I made a call to one of my former youth, who is now an Ordained Elder in the Evangelical Church . I challenged him to pray about joining our church as the Youth Minister. It was certainly a challenge because Chris Cooper lived almost 100 miles away near Atlanta. I knew that he had a full time job. I also knew that there were restrictions that kept him from moving at this point in his life. Oh, and not to forget that he was also the father of two year old triplets at the time.
Ok, so this was a BIG challenge. But if you are going to dream, why not dream BIG, especially if God is on your side. I asked Chris to pray about coming down once or twice a month and we would try and cover the weekly Wednesday night youth meetings and Sunday School. He and his wife, Lisa, said they would agree to pray about it. It was now in God’s hands and committed to prayer.
The next week Chris called and said that he and Lisa had decided to give it a try. There was a big change in my original proposal. Instead of working with the youth once or twice a month, they were led to commit to every Wednesday night and Sunday School. I reminded him that they lived in Loganville and that would be a lot of driving. We agreed to give it a trial run for 5 months.
It has been a year now. Chris and his family are an integral part of Fellowship Church in Lizella, GA. God has done some miraculous things with Chris and our Youth Group. Spiritually, they have grown by leaps and bounds. We have had two youth led worship services during our regular Sunday worship hour. They led the music, performed skits, and quoted Scripture memorization. Some have shared their testimony with our congregation. We have even had some of the older teens become church members.
Our teens have become a vital part of what God is doing at Fellowship. They have moved from being a separate extension of our church to being a grafted part of the church body. We are who we are because of their contributions. Many of them are now active tithers. Our church doesn’t just like them being here, we need them and want them. Our adults are learning as much from them as they are from us. We have seen growth and the excitement is contagious. God is on the move. We are growing spiritually and numerically.
I would like to encourage us all to obey that nudge from the Holy Spirit. Listen to Him and step out on faith and trust Him. That nudging of the Holy Spirit to call Pastor Chris led to him stepping out on faith and trusting God to commit to our Youth. God is honoring our faith and it is amazing.
Rev. Russ Bozeman, Pastor