People are Hurting

People are Hurting

The fact that people are hurting is a sad reality. That was driven home this past week as we witnessed the effects of Hurricane Michael on the Florida panhandle, especially Mexico Beach and Tyndall Air Force Base. We have two sister PCA churches in Panama City that sustained significant damage. I am trying to get more information on the best way help might be given to those in that area.
This sad reality was further driven home on Monday night as the Elders met for their monthly meeting. While no significant decisions were made, there was much time spent sharing congregational needs of which the Elders are aware and then praying for those needs. As pastor of this church, I was greatly encouraged to hear of our Elders seeking to be shepherds to the hurting. By God’s grace, they are trying to live out I Peter 5:2 which reads, shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you, not for shameful gain, but eagerly; (ESV). That was indeed encouraging.
What was sobering was to reflect on hurting people. The needs of our congregation are varied- physical needs, relational needs, emotional needs as well as financial needs. I know on a Sunday morning it may look like we have it all together, but we don’t. We are a hurting people who need God’s grace as well as encouragement and prayer. I realize this is true of every congregation.
You may be hurting right now. I encourage you to seek out brothers and sisters in Christ here at HLPC with whom you can share your burdens. I’m available to talk and to pray with you as your pastor. Our Elders are here for you. Your fellow believers are here for you. Let’s not miss out on the privilege and opportunity for mutual ministry.
We often pray to be a healthy church. We use the acronym “CREW” to help us remember what that should look like. That stands for caring, reaching, equipping, and worshipping. We want to be a caring church that provides a safe place for hurting people to share their burdens and get much needed encouragement. May God, by His grace, make that true of us.

Paul Bankson
pbankson@gmail.com

Paul was born and raised in Birmingham, AL and graduated from Auburn University in 1986 with a degree in Business Administration. It was at Auburn that he met his wife, Connie. They were married in Ft. Lauderdale, FL and moved to Jackson, MS where he attended Reformed Theological Seminary graduating with a Master of Divinity in 1991. Upon graduation, Paul served as a Campus Minister with RUF, the campus ministry of the PCA, at Tennessee-Martin where the Banksons lived for 5 years. They moved to Macon, GA in 1996 to work with RUF at Mercer University and then Paul joined the pastoral staff at First Presbyterian Church of Macon as an Assistant Pastor in 1999. In 2004, Paul and his family moved to Warner Robins where he served as a church planter and then organizing Pastor of Houston Lake Presbyterian Church. In December 2014 Paul completed a Doctor of Ministry degree through Reformed Theological Seminary of Orlando. Paul and Connie have three sons, Andrew (23), Stephen (20), and Matthew (15). Paul enjoys grilling, camping with his family, and Auburn sports (War Eagle!).