The Main Thing
Nearing the End
The last two months have been a steady time of just serving God. Over the months of September and now the end of October, we have a had a steady trickle of vacationers and snowbirds, both coming and going. We are dually excited for the arrivals and yet saddened about the departures. Many have become our friends and we pray for God’s continued blessings upon their lives. With that said, we are nearing the end of the year and it is hard to believe that this small church will soon be 1 ½ years-old.
When you are so young, you are also very vulnerable and all the minor details matter. We are slowly building a faithful group of attendees and in order to make this more productive, we are changing our service times. Through prayer and counsel, we will have one main Morning Service on Sundays at 10 am through the winter. Transition is a helpful and necessary tool for growth and is not always accomplished the way it has always been done. So, it is our prayerful goal “to make the main thing, the main thing” by practically focusing on faithful church attendance, church growth (spiritual and numerical), and giving the Gospel. We will practice crawling before we leap and enjoy the baby steps that God allows us to take.
When you are in the thick of the ministry or life, it is hard to see the big picture through clear lenses. But, God is ALWAYS working in our lives and in the lives of those around us. God is never finished with His plan for the lives of His saints, even though our range of vision is limited. Recently, one of our attendees’ son – who is in bootcamp – has asked to be baptized when he comes back. We are excited about this opportunity in November to review the Gospel with him and potentially have our first baptism. Additionally, myself, my wife and my daughters are growing in our relationships with the Lord; we are actively seeing God use our testimonies in the lives of co-workers, acquaintances and class mates. If the Pastor and his family aren’t growing, can God really have revival? And sometimes, the pastor and his family are the only ones growing, don’t take it for granted, but rejoice in the fact that God wants to use you. People are curiously watching the Christian’s testimony – your testimony – and need a transparent role model to come to the saving knowledge of Christ. Let’s not throw dirt on the Lord by our lack of consistency.
Lastly, your prayer and financial support are always appreciated. It is tremendous to have friends who care about us, but most importantly, care about the work of the Lord here in the Northwoods. We are busily preparing for the long cold winters here, but where God abides in the heart, there is always warmth and growth for the Christian. You are in our prayers.
May the Lord Bless,
Praising God for your ministries!
Pastor Shawn Suri,
Thank you. Each of your newsletters that I have read have spoken to me, an outsider with hope–more than confidence–of making a move to Land o’ Lakes: That’s the town where “Wisconsin’s hardest working river” begins and one might be able to see Michigan’s sky from some windows.
“God is always working in our lives and in the lives of those around us.” You wrote that above; I have lived on that promise for forty-six years, confident in the truth of Hebrews 11:1. Fellowship has been predominantly with Baptists, although geography has, on occasion, led to inclusion of other Bible believers–even Lutherans. My spirit rejoiced to find Northern Lakes Baptist Church within walking distance of potential future housing.
Each of us is either people motivated, thing motivated or idea motivated–possibly in combination. Preoccupation with thoughts has not always yielded productivity with objects, or successful relations in society. (That’s an attempt to say why a loving husband and father of five, struggling 55 years with health issues, finds himself ready to move on to location more central to Indiana, Alaska, Minnesota and Wisconsin grandchildren.)
Expecting to check out your neighborhood soon, I will give warning before appearing in your parking lot.
Dear Mr. Koepp,
Thank you for your encouragement, myself and our church family will be praying for you!
Pastor Shawn Suri