December 28, 2018
Update From New Creation Church (Granville, New York)
Within the Fill These Cities Vision, our church planting prayer goal is to start 25 new churches by the year 2025. Since Joel Aubrey is leading the church-planting team for New Creation Church in Granville, New York, I invited Joel to post an update for us because the elders recently approved New Creation Church as our sixth of the 25 new churches for which we have been praying in the Fill These Cities vision.—Pastor Kenny
As the new year approaches, I look back over the past few months with mixed feelings. First, I am overwhelmed with gratitude to the Lord for all he has done for me and my family and our church in 2018. After thousands of combined hours of volunteer labor (spread out over about a year), and countless gifts from God’s people both near and far, the Lord made it possible for us to worship the risen King Jesus in our new building on Resurrection Sunday. We’ve also celebrated two baptisms this year and welcomed several new members into our church family. On a personal level, God has continued to provide for our family financially through the generous support of our ministry partners. He has also provided Brian Verrett (my fellow pastor and also a Bethlehem College & Seminary grad) with an amazing full-time job at Granville High School as a tutor. Finally, God has given Carl Beckler, Brian, myself, and our wives a sweet unity and an ever-growing sense of camaraderie as we lead together. He has given us all many opportunities to befriend unbelievers and share the gospel this past year.
But as the year draws to a close, I’m also feeling a wistful sort of sadness at how my own heart struggled to trust God in the discouraging moments in the past year. My prayer going into 2019 is that he would cause my heart rest content in the knowledge that in all my labors for gospel advance in our town (Colossians 1:29), he is at work with his strength, doing his will, his way, for his glory and the good of his sheep (including me). Though I may lose sight of his promises on a particularly discouraging day, I know he never forgets his word: “Surely, I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20), and “your labor in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58), and “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand” (John 10:27–28). Promises like these—and many more—have grown far sweeter this past year, and they regularly warm my heart and the hearts of our leaders as we prepare ourselves and our church family for a new year.
Another feeling I have in my heart is a deep longing—a longing to see God save sinners with my own eyes—a longing to see lost people found by Jesus in 2019. In Luke 19:10 Jesus says, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” This year, we want to plead with our Father to do what he sent Jesus to do! We’re pleading with him to summon his sheep from one end of our region to the other and bring them into his fold under the care of our great Shepherd, Jesus Christ (John 10:16). Would you join us in praying to this end?
Four other prayer requests come to mind:
Please Pray …
- That the Lord would raise up laborers for the harvest both in our church and in our region.
- That Jesus would help us all not to grow weary in doing good in 2019, but to remember that we will reap if we do not lose heart (Galatians 6:9).
- That the Holy Spirit would continue to work mightily in our members and regular attenders, convicting of sin and bringing forth the fruit of repentance.
- That God would continue to give us wisdom and provide for us for the ongoing renovation work in our building. We need about $150,000 to complete the work and wisdom in our priorities.
Rejoicing with you in Christ this Christmas Season,
New Creation Church, Granville, NY