Meridian Avenue Baptist Church

Monday Morning Rewind – 2.19.2024

Hey MABC family and friends,

This Saturday Sherry and I were out looking at some homes in the southeast Wichita area.
That would put us right in between our daughters plus quick interstate/turnpike access to
Kansas City area for daughter #3. There was to be an open house that we wanted to look at
but when we got there, no one was there. I called the realtor who then gave me the garage
code to get in and look at the house. It was nice but there was one thing that was a deal
breaker for us design wise.

Now, on the porch we found a couple of Amazon packages but there was nobody living in the
house as it was still under construction. We looked at the addresses and found they were for a
neighbor. Sherry offered to take them over to their house and I went to the car. Five minutes
goes by and Sherry comes out to holler at me to come to the house. A single dad was living
there and he was interested in our interest in the house. Sherry answered as always trying to
find a way to include a hint of faith telling him that we were looking for a house in this area,
about our daughters living close by and then she inserts the “go to”: and my husband has
recently started pastoring a church here in Wichita. That little bit opened a conversation to
discussing his faith. He happens to go to Newspring and has served in the children’s ministry
area for the past five years.

Now I say that to give you an idea of how easy it is to weave faith based ideas into your
conversation. Remember our key point from yesterday’s message? Evangelism is not just
anywhere we find it but anywhere we want to find it. In this case it turned out that the resident
was already a believer but we had some good conversation. Sherry opened the door and then I
looked at a discipleship opportunity and asked him if he goes to the men’s lunch at Newspring
every month? He said no so I invited him to his own church (ha ha) and offered to meet him
there. He gave me his number and said sure.

If you are a follower of Jesus, witnessing to others and making disciples is not an option. In
Acts 1 Jesus said “you will be” my witnesses.

Remember that there is no AWANA’s tonight. Sherry and I will be at church this evening for a
while…she has a meeting and I will get some work done in the office. Wednesday I will be in at
the normal time of 2:30 pm. Thursday afternoon I will have a meeting at Lawrence Elementary
and them a visit in the evening.

Have a great week!

Good Monday morning!

(Warning: this may be a little lengthy…not as long as the Super Bowl so hang in there!)
How many of you made it through all 5 quarters of the Super Bowl? Were you worried you
would run out of wings before the game was over? Sherry and I were extremely blessed in that
regard. Our small group that meets on Sunday evenings is very good when it comes to food!
We have some excellent “smokers” and by that I mean wings, ribs, etc.! We never run out of
goodies. I also appreciate them because it is a diverse group. We have couples with kids in
elementary school, middle school and high school as well as graduate school and kids out in the
work force. We have teachers and paras, maintenance workers, law enforcement,
administrative assistants, a co-op manager and a fundraiser. One mom had a brain aneurysm a
couple of years ago and hasn’t been able to work.

I love the makeup of this small group because it represents what a church should look like.
Every generation is adequately represented. It is often said by this group that this is their
“church.” Whether we study a book of the bible, a video driven discussion or watch The
Chosen, our discussion includes viewpoints from different stages of life, different career paths,
and many different life circumstances such as parenting children and teens. Most of the
couples have been long time followers of Jesus but one couple with a junior in high school and
the college grad student are relatively new to the faith in the last couple of years. They have
had a tough time getting their kids to join them in their faith journey. To help them we often
have “family nights” like the Super Bowl where the whole family comes. We want those who are
new to the faith to see what a community of Christ followers looks like away from Sundays.

Now, can it be a little messy at times? Sure it can but isn’t that what happens in authentic faith
families? Sometimes our mess can be relational and sometimes it can be a “facility mess!”
Sherry and I host and sometimes our house gets a little messy. In events like last night’s Super
bowl gathering, there are food and drink spills, dirty dishes and our littlest ones don’t always
clean up their toys. Does it always happen? No, but when it does, Sherry and I don’t get upset.
Messes, whether food and drink, little ones interrupting conversations or occasionally not getting
all the Legos picked up are a blessing. That means that our people feel comfortable, welcomed
and loved…and they are present!

As your new pastor, this is what Sherry and I desire for Meridian Ave Baptist Church. We want
MABC to be a place where all generations feel comfortable, welcomed and loved. If you are a
member, what can you be doing to help us facilitate this kind of environment? If you looking for
a church home, would you consider visiting us and even join us in our vision?

Pastor Rick