Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Vision (9/29/11): CRBC: One Year Mark

Fellowship at the 2010 Keach Conference, September 2010.

“Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath the LORD helped us” (1 Samuel 7:12).

“Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth's sake” (Psalm 115:1).

This week marks the one year anniversary of the Covenant Worship Service in which, under the Lord’s leading, we formed Christ Reformed Baptist Church. This time last year our first members affirmed our membership covenant and confession of faith and then signed their names to our membership roll.

So, we are a one year old church. We had about a nine month gestation period from January-September 2010, and then, on the last Lord’s Day of September 2010, we had our birthday. We can perhaps compare a one year old church to a one year old child. Our body is continuing to learn and to grow. We have taken our first steps but also need some support from time to time. We are learning how to talk, hold ourselves up, and do things on our own.

The Lord has continued steadily to grow our body in spirit and number. In September we had our highest monthly average attendance since we began. We have had a steady stream of guest and visitors. Some of these guests have been just passing though. Last month, for example, we had an extended family from North Carolina worship with us, because one of their loved ones was undergoing serious surgery at UVA Hospital. We also had two families from Ohio worship with us on their way to Colonial Williamsburg for homeschool week. Others come from our general area (sometimes driving an hour or more) and are looking for a local church to attend. Last Lord’s Day, three such new families visited for the first time. Though we have no church building and meet in a rented office space, people keep finding us, primarily through our website and sermonaudio site and through personal invitation.

There is no doubt that the Lord had a distinct plan and a purpose for raising up our congregation for such a time as this in Charlottesville and Central Virginia. This week we quietly mark this milestone with grateful hearts.

Grace and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle

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