The Blessing of the Church

The Blessing of the Church

This Sunday we will have the joy and privilege of ordaining and installing our newest Deacon, Jed Jessup, during morning worship.  These are special times in the life of a church and remind us of the blessing of being a part of the body of Christ.  We are blessed to be a part of not only the invisible church but the visible church as well.  What’s that?

            The invisible church is the church as God sees it, made up of all those, throughout the world and throughout time, who profess faith in Jesus Christ.  For some, like Abraham, it was a faith that looked forward. For those of us this side of the cross, it is a faith that looks back at Jesus’ completed work. The visible church, on the other hand, is the church as we see it–such as our local body, Houston Lake Presbyterian Church.       

            I have met Christians who thought that being part of the invisible church–as crucial as that is–is enough.  But God’s Word gives us exhortations that could only be heeded in the context of a local body. We are exhorted to meet together (Hebrews 10:25), to submit to God ordained leadership (Hebrews 13:17, I Peter 5:5), and to bear one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:1-2).  In addition, we have the picture in Acts of the Apostles establishing churches with Elders and Deacons in leadership.  You can’t be a faithful believer and not be connected to a local church.  An unchurched Christian should be seen as an oxymoron.

            Sadly, COVID has impacted the ministry of the local church in this season of life we are in.  It’s made it difficult for us to be connected as we want.  Some need to be extra careful in these days.  By God’s grace, things seem to be improving.  We are meeting while still maintaining safe practices and, to the best of our knowledge, have seen no spread due to worship gatherings. Let’s continue to pray for safe, effective vaccinations and for the restraint, if not eradication, of this perplexing virus.  God gave us the local church to be a spiritual family for our benefit–let’s pray that our full enjoyment of this blessing comes very, very soon!

            One last thing- we are planning to have Easter worship outdoors, weather permitting, on April 4th.  We hope that this gives even greater freedom for folks to attend.  Would you please be praying between now and Easter for good weather for the service?

Your Pastor,

Paul

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!).