To: FBCF Church Family

From: Pastor Bill

April 18, 2020

Hi Folks!

I trust this finds you well.  I wanted to take just a minute to say hi and share a few thoughts with you.

Last Sunday was a very unusual Easter as we met in the parking lot of FES for a drive-in service.  It was a really fun time together!  We had about 75 cars and about 150 attend.  Many, of course, watched the online prerecorded message (about 170 views) and a boatload (about 1100 views) watched the Facebook Live recording of the drive-in service.  That was a last minute (literally) thing that Josh Jennet and Robert Mattocks put up that turned out drawing a lot of interest.  May the Lord use all of that to draw people to Himself!

I want to thank those guys as well as Allen and the (reduced) praise team, our A/V guys (especially Joe and T. J. for getting our FM station going), the Safety Team, Gary Harris (rollback/stage) and Randy Branum for the sound trailer.  Oh, and apologies to Maghan Mattocks.  I mentioned Sunday that she was on duty and came to help, but instead of saying Maghan was out on patrol, I said that Maghan was out on parole!  Big difference!

Regarding when we can meet again, I don’t feel like we are quite ready to make that call yet.  The governor’s executive order goes until the end of the month, but we will be consulting with other churches and TBC leaders to help us make an informed decision.  We will communicate a game plan in the coming weeks, but will have the prerecorded service done in the auditorium tomorrow (April 19) as well as next Sunday (April 26).

Last thought.  Much of our thinking is centered around the experts and their conflicting thoughts and expectations.  That can be so frustrating.  Let me encourage all of us to keep our thoughts centered on the Lord, asking Him to help us understand all that He is up to, and asking Him to give us wisdom and boldness to share with people that are more open to spiritual things than they have ever been.  I truly believe that the Lord may open a door here unlike what we have ever seen.  Let’s be ready to tell about the love of Christ to those whose hearts are have been opened through all of this.

Take care.  Be safe.  Show patience – this too shall pass.

In Him,

Pastor Bill

Bill Gowder

Lead Pastor

First Baptist Church Friendsville