PFBC: Prayer List #28

pray-without-ceasing

The following list of prayer requests can be prayed for in your own quiet time with the Lord, in your own family worship time, or in Growth Groups. Please keep the following requests in your prayers:

Justin Aubrecht – Please pray for Justin’s renters, Ben and Emily, as Emily has had unusual bleeding and the doctors are at a loss as to what to do.

Rachel Aubrecht – Please pray for Rachel’s home church, Gospel Light Baptist Church, as they seek a new Senior Pastor. Also, please pray for Rachel and her pregnancy.

Ise Beinhart – Please pray for this young child as she battles severe health issues.

Carl Benson – Unspoken Prayer Request.

Mike Boos – Unspoken Prayer Request.

Ray Cooper – Unspoken Prayer Request.

Susan Davis – Please continue to pray for Susan’s father, Chester, that he would come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

Greg Dunbar – Please lift up in prayer Greg’s mom, Debbie, who is struggling with cancer and is fighting it by means of radiation.

Veronica Dunbar – Please pray for Veronica’s friend’s grandbaby, Brilee, as this baby struggles with her breathing and other health complications.

Pierce Duvall – Please continue to pray for this little guy as he recovers from liver cancer and chemotherapy.

Jason Feuerbach – Unspoken Prayer Request.

Rick Fields – Pray for Rick and his overall health.

Steve and Diana Fordham – Pray for Steve and Diana as they battle many different health issues. Also, please pray for Steve and Diana as they get ready to move to a different house here in Washington.

John Hardt – Unspoken Prayer Request.

Marsha Jones – Please pray for Marsha and her many health complications.

Matt Latcham – Please pray for Matt’s mother, Linda, who is battling cancer. Also, please pray for Matt as he just resigned from his teaching position and is looking for a new line of work.

Verla Lewis – Please pray for Verla and her many health complications.

Edwin Luers – Please pray for Edwin’s part-time employee, Wilfred Miller, and his salvation.

Brent and Tori Lybarger – Praise the Lord!! The Lybarger’s Amish friends (i.e. four young people) who were hit in their buggy by a truck all survived and are recovering at home. Please pray for continued healing and strength.

Adele McPike – Please pray for Adele and her overall health.

John and Jackie Morgan – Unspoken Prayer Request.

Arlena Tinnes – Please continue to pray for healing and strength as Arlena battles cancer.

Doug and Julie Tinnes – Please continue to pray for Doug and Julie’s grandson, Josiah, as he recovers from heart surgery.

Judy Wolf – Pray for Judy’s son, Todd, who is in poor health and needs healing. Please pray for Todd’s salvation as well. Pray too for Judy’s great-granddaughter, Errin, who has a heart implant and other health complications.

Eldon and Phyllis Yoder – Please pray for the Yoders as they travel extensively this summer in order to serve with IRBC and the Gideons International.

Mike York – Please pray for Mike’s wife, Becky, as she recovers from knee surgery.

Heather Zieglowsky – Unspoken Prayer Request.

Our Missionaries – Please pray for our many supported missionaries as they serve all around the globe.

Our Country – Please pray for President Trump and Vice President Pence as they lead our country for the next four years.

Our State Association – Please pray for our State Rep, Tim Capon, and his Council of Ten that God would give to these men wisdom and discernment as they serve the 99 churches in our association.

Our Community – Please pray that we, as a church, would be bold with the Gospel and reach out to our community with the love of Jesus.

Our Church – Please pray for our church as we move into our summer camping season. Pray that God would keep our church family safe as we travel and go to many different places this summer.

Our Leadership Team – Pray for our Lead Pastor, Associate Pastor, and Deacons that God would grant to them wisdom, discernment, vision, and unity as they navigate the tricky waters of pursuing land/building.

Our Summer Intern – Please pray for Lance Lewis, and his 12-week pastoral internship, that God would work in his heart and life in a mighty way.

Our Youth Group – Please pray for Pastor Jon as he leads this growing group of young people.

Our Widows/Widowers – Please pray for Prairie Flower’s many widows and widowers that God would be especially near to them and comfort them with His presence.

Please Note: We update this prayer list monthly. If you would like a prayer request to be added to this list, please let Pastor Dave or Pastor Jon know. Thank you!

From the Intern’s Desk: My Philosophy of Ministry

pastor-shepherd-guard-watch

Introduction

Pastors face an ever-growing push, from church members and even fellow pastors, to adapt to the new trends and styles that have invaded ministry. The same can also be said for the influences of outdated traditions and religious rituals. The contrast between these two extremes can cause dissention, strife, and even a church split when a pastor loses sight of what matters most in ministry. He either pursues the newest and latest styles in ministry, or he wallows in the rules and standards of tradition. Recognizing the goal of ministry is crucial in discerning the methods of ministry. With this concept in mind we must ask, what is the goal in ministry?

A Biblical Goal for Ministry

Paul gives us his goal for ministry in Colossians 1:28. Paul has just expounded on the preeminence of Christ in verses 15-23. He identifies the person (Jesus Christ) who should be preeminent in the life of a believer, and then he explains how a believer can glorify this person (Jesus Christ) with their life. He concludes his section on his personal ministry by saying, “Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ.” Paul explains that the end goal of his ministry is mature believers (or disciples) of Jesus Christ.

A Biblical Model of Ministry

Achieving the goal for ministry starts by understanding the model of ministry. Jesus Christ ultimately laid the foundation for our ministry by living out His ministry for three years during His time here on earth. How did Christ exemplify ministry in His time here on earth? What does His example teach us? First of all, Christ made His first priority people. His ministry began with calling twelve disciples. Christ found these men (John 1:35-42), He taught these men (Matthew 5,6,7), He brought them with Him while He did ministry (Matthew 15:29-39), and He personally invested in these men (Matthew 26:36-46). His focus was to minister to these men first, then to teach these men to minister to others (Matthew 28:18-20). He trained disciples who had fruitful ministries of making disciples.

A Pastor with a Focus

Paul gives us the goal for ministry, and Christ gives us the model of ministry. But what is a pastor’s specific focus? Am I, as a future pastor, required to put the entirety of ministry on my shoulders? Well, Ephesians 4 gives to pastors their focus in ministry. You see, Christ ultimately gifted the church with pastors. Why did Christ give the church pastors? He gave the church pastors “to equip the saints for the work of the ministry, for the building up of the body of Christ.” So the pastor has not been given to the church for the primary purpose of doing ministry, but to equip the saints (disciples) to do the work of ministry. What does a disciple look like when he or she has been equipped for the work of ministry? Well, that disciple has unity of faith, knowledge of the Son of God, maturity, and looks more like Christ (Ephesians 4:13-14).

My Personal Goal for Ministry

The discipleship of modern day Christians is a difficult, yet rewarding task that we, as pastors, are assigned. Ministry today should have the same goal as ministry in Paul’s day. Thus, my personal goal for ministry is to guide disciples of Jesus, who were once dead in their trespasses and sins, into a mature and fruitful relationship with Jesus Christ. This process ultimately ends by glorifying God with changed lives.

Navigating the Core Pastoral Responsibilities

There are various methods in pastoral ministry, and there is no one method a pastor should use in making disciples. However, I do believe a pastor does have several core responsibilities that should be primary in his ministry. These responsibilities should make up a pastor’s job description. In other words, if his job is to equip the disciples for the work of ministry, then these are the core pastoral responsibilities that should comprise his ministry:

  • Preaching the Word of God
    • There is no greater privilege in my mind than to preach and teach God’s Word. In 2 Timothy 4:1-2, Paul gives a charge in his final words to his protégé, Pastor Timothy. He instructs young Timothy to “Preach the Word: be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with complete patience and teaching.” You see, heresy is detrimental to discipleship. Paul is challenging Timothy with the simple fact that false teachers are looming around the church in Ephesus. The solution given to Timothy, to repel these poisonous insects plaguing the church with bad doctrine, is to simply preach the Word of God. Discipleship can and should be personal, but let us not loose sight of the fact that discipleship should include a steady diet of the faithful preaching of God’s Word. As a pastor, this is my primary task.
  • Administrating the Church of God
    • The title “Pastor” is the most common term given to a man in pastoral ministry. However, the more common biblical term would be “Bishop”. The biblical basis is found throughout the New Testament, but it is specifically located in Acts 20:28 when Paul says, “Pay careful attention to yourselves and to the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers [or bishops], to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood.” A pastor is charged with oversight [being a bishop] in his church. He must consistently manage the affairs of his church (i.e. planning, supervising, etc.) in order for growth and effectiveness to take place. Bottom line: Church administration is vital to church transformation.
  • Shepherding the People of God
    • A pastor is a shepherd. The idea behind the title “Pastor” is that of a man tending to his sheep. A shepherd cares for his sheep by guiding them, comforting them, correcting them (if need be), and ultimately looking out for their well being. A pastor does the exact same thing. As a pastor, I am to spiritually guide people through the problems of life. As a pastor, I am to comfort people lovingly through the trials of life. As a pastor, it may be necessary that I correct my people when they are wrong. Pastors have an obligation to their congregation to look out for their ultimate well being. A pastor does this by not only preaching, but also counseling, visiting, teaching, calling, and even in administration. At the end of the day, the pastor-shepherd has the ultimate goal of leading the flock into a more meaningful and fruitful relationship with their ultimate Shepherd, Jesus Christ.

Conclusion

Ministry today is all about people. If you cannot handle people, then you cannot handle ministry. Pastors that try to either stand hard fast against the times, or who push for change in their churches, are ultimately missing the point. Ministry has never been about what style of church you have. Ministry has always been about people growing and maturing in their relationship with Jesus Christ. If a church does that, then it won’t matter what style of convictions they have. In the end, I hope I can look back at my life and say that I matured a local body of Christ effectively through these core responsibilities and all to the praise of His glorious grace. I also pray that I will hear Him say, “Well done, good and faithful servant!”

“Trusting Him” by Guest Blogger – Julie Tinnes

Grenada Missions Trip

In this week’s blog post, Prairie Flower member, Julie Tinnes, shares her heartbeat behind her repeated trips to Grenada. Julie is someone who truly understands our church’s mission and vision, namely, “to be a strong church that makes disciples for the glory of God.” It is my prayer that your heart will be warmed and touched as you read Julie’s story. In the end, please pray for Julie and her team as they head out in just a few short weeks and be looking for opportunities yourself to be on mission.


In just a few short weeks, I’ll be slapping blindly at the alarm clock so that my husband, Doug, and I can rush off to wrestle a dozen suitcases through the airport check-in line. From there, we will spend the next 28 hours traveling to Grenada, West Indies. We’ll conduct Vacation Bible School every morning, do an evangelistic outreach every afternoon, and preach the Gospel on the streets in the mountains every night. Sound exhausting? It is! Eighteen hour days, coupled with constant 90% humidity, really wears us out! So why do we go year after year? Because God loves us. Because God saved us. Because God has called us to share His perfect love with the folks in Grenada. He has asked us only to trust Him.

We trusted Him when Aisha, because of the influences of a variety of religious teachings, questioned who the real god was. We were able to open God’s Word and let Him speak for Himself; showing her the One, true God. Aisha believed!

We trusted Him when ChrisAnn, who was rebellious and disruptive, day after day, finally submitted to the Savior’s tugging at her heart and repented and asked for forgiveness. ChrisAnn believed!

We trusted Him as sweet, shy, little Heidi slipped Doug a note asking, “How can I be saved?” She had never heard of her need for the Savior before attending VBS, and yet, God’s Word spoke clearly to this eight year-old and changed her heart for eternity. Heidi believed!

We trusted Him when my boy, RayJay, attended VBS again last year. RayJay was one of our groupies; showing up year after year, wherever our team was conducting Bible School. RayJay is clearly a leader among his peers; an eleven-year-old man-child that we knew God could use mightily. And yet RayJay had never made a decision to live for Christ. I was so burdened for RayJay and his salvation, but after a week of Bible School had come and gone, it seemed that RayJay still had not made a decision. He had even attended our nightly street meetings, seeking me out and pulling me into the biggest bear hug! Every night he heard the Gospel presented passionately, just as he had the morning before, and yet he did not respond.

On the last evening of our street ministry, God challenged us to be bold. I knew I could not leave Grenada without witnessing to RayJay one more time. With only five minutes until Doug was to begin preaching, we called RayJay to come and sit with us. Doug straightforwardly asked him, “Don’t you think it’s about time to get things right with God?” As his man-child demeanor melted away, and with childlike faith, RayJay responded, “Yes, sir, it is.” Doug stepped up to preach while Miss Terri, our missionary friend, and I shared God’s Word with my boy, RayJay. And RayJay believed!

We rejoice over the hundreds of names that have been added to the Book of Life through this ministry. We praise God for His promise that each one is secure in the Father’s hand and cannot be snatched out. We are overwhelmingly blessed and incredibly privileged to, not only be used of God, but to witness His work. To God be the glory!

Please pray with us for the health and strength of our team, and for our hearts to be burdened for the salvation of each child and adult the Lord puts in our path. Pray also for the local pastors and their families as we work together with them. We want to be a blessing to them and encourage them to continue on for the Lord. They experience on-going financial burdens due to the high unemployment rate and limited resources of the Grenadian people. They also battle against the wrong teachings of the various religious groups found in the country. Lastly, please pray for continued spiritual growth for each of the RayJays who have made a decision to live for Christ.

 

 

Follow the Leader

Follow the Leader #2

Yesterday evening, my family and I took a walk around the neighborhood that eventually ended with us walking the Kewash Trail for a bit. It was a wonderful walk with good weather, good family time, and good physical activity. But what made this walk even more wonderful was the fact that my wife and I allowed our daughter, Ann-Marie (age 4), to be the leader during this walk. That’s right, we essentially played “follow the leader”, and, let me tell ya, being led by a 4-year-old was fun, humorous, and (dare I say it) insightful. Here’s some quick (non-deep, but essential) lessons on leadership I was reminded of as my daughter led the way…

  1. A Leader Must Be Visible – Ann-Marie was all too eager to lead the family on our nature walk last night. In fact, she was so excited about being the leader that she soon forgot to be the leader, and instead started to walk beside us (then behind us), talking about how wonderful it was to be a leader. We had to remind her several times that in order to lead, she must be visible. In other words, we told her that she needed to step out front and “be the leader”! Bottom line: Good leaders will be visible to their followers and everyone will know where their leader is and (to a degree) where their leader is going.
  2. A Leader Makes Decisions – You can only go in one direction at a time. This is a simple rule in life. Indeed, it’s impossible to go in two directions at the same time. Ann-Marie somewhat learned this lesson last night. There were many times in our walk that she had to choose whether to go left or right, north or south, or take this trail or that trail. Some of these decisions came easy to her…others came by with more difficulty, and even with fear that she was making the wrong decision. But good leaders make decisions even when it’s hard…even when it’s scary.
  3. A Leader Delights in Leading – There is nothing more disturbing than being led by someone who hates, loathes, or overly fears to lead. This type of leadership breeds mistrust, instability, and resentment. Ann-Marie, however, truly delighted in leading. She was energized at the thought of leading the family and her own energy and positivity transferred to the rest of the family. The walk was made more enjoyable by the simple fact that our leader delighted in leading the way. In fact, this would be a good time to pause and to analyze your own life. Are you a leader? Perhaps you lead at home, or at work, or at church, or in some aspect of your community. Do you delight in leading or has the energy and passion been zapped from you?
  4. A Leader Brings You Home – Unfortunately, we couldn’t spend all night walking. We had to come home. We all knew this, even Ann-Marie. So, Ann-Marie asked me, “Where is home?” So, I kindly advised her as to the direction of our home. She took my counsel, and with her still leading the way, she led us home. Perhaps this bullet point should be labeled differently: A Leader Asks for Wise Counsel OR A Leader Brings You Home By Means of Asking for Wise Counsel OR A Leader Brings You to the Appointed Destination. But here’s the bottom line: A leader always brings you to where you belong…in the case of our walk last night, with Ann-Marie leading the way, home is where we all belonged…and home is where she led us.

How about you? What are your thoughts on leadership? What makes a good leader? What makes a bad leader? I would love to hear your thoughts.