The Cool Springs Primitive Baptist Church in Danville, GA was blessed to observe her annual meeting this past weekend. We had a delightful time in the Lord, and it seemed that His hand of mercy and providence rested upon us throughout. The only down moment of the weekend actually showed a great deal of His providential protection over us. The church invited Elders Mike Montgomery and Luke Addison to preach for us. Though Elder Addison was unable to be with us until Friday, Elder Montgomery was able to come Thursday. So, the Lord providentially worked that out. Even though both intended to stay through Sunday, Elder Montgomery received a phone call that a terrible tragedy had struck the family of one of the deacons of his home church. He then had to arrange to fly home early on Saturday, but the Lord still providentially watched over us so that we were not without visiting supply for our meeting.
The meeting began with a wonderful and Spirit-filled communion service on Wednesday night. It was truly a joy to once again witness the transformation that takes place in the faces of the members as they proceed through this most solemn of occasions. During the first portion of the service, there is a sense of seriousness (and even some sadness when considering His suffering). The faces of remembrance can sometimes have pain though still understanding the victory in that ultimate of all suffering and sacrifice. However, when the service moves to the second portion and they begin to wash each other's feet, the faces of pained seriousness give way to tears of happiness as they become "happy in the Lord." How fitting that the Lord would have us remember with gravity the service He rendered for us and follow it with cheerful gladness in loving one another for His sake.
The meeting then proceeded in the coming services with the preaching of our visiting ministers. The arrangements were as follows:
Elder Mike Montgomery – "The 5 R's from I Thessalonians 4:13-18." He taught the remembrance, return, resurrection, rapture, and reunion of that blessed moment.
Elder Mike Montgomery – "Godliness and Contentment from I Timothy 6:6." He taught what godliness and contentment really were and how they should be employed.
Elder Luke Addison – "Blind Bartimaeus on the Jericho Road from Mark 10:46-52." He taught what it meant to be blind and "near" Christ rather than in the way with Him and healed.
Elder Luke Addison – "Solomon's bed and chariot from Song of Solomon 3:6-10." He taught about the might and glory of Christ's kingdom as illustrated by Solomon's kingdom.
Elder Luke Addison – "Prayer from Romans 8:26." He taught about proper prayer, some of its characteristics, and how it translates to heaven.
Elder Philip Conley (pastor) – "Psalm 23." Tried to tie in some of the points and themes of our meeting for focus and reflection before going back out into the world.
As the arrangements show, there was no one "theme" or overarching subject. However, the brethren's efforts did tie in together very well with a good treatment of our abilities, strengths, and desire to follow after Him measured against the holy backdrop of what He has done for us. As we previously mentioned, we were blessed with several indications of God's providential care over us, but one of the other remarkable points occurred on Sunday morning. It was one of those truly special "pulpit times." As Elder Addison began his opening remarks, he freely confessed that he had looked for a text and could not find one and further confessed to not feeling to have much of anything to bring. After much contemplation and prayerful meditation, he said he could only start with a thought and see if the Lord would bless. He then stated, "This may be the shortest Sunday morning sermon ever at an annual meeting!" About an hour later, he was still rolling with as much a head of steam from the Spirit as he had an hour before. He eventually had to quit as opposed to close since there was no closing the rich beauty that the Spirit had led all of us to and through.
One of the most refreshing things about meetings such as this is that the pastor gets to hear other brethren for a change. Rather than having to feed from my own preaching, I can sit there with my hatch open and feed alongside everyone else. Another rich blessing is that it affords the saints the opportunity to eat from the hands of a different chef. We all get our food from the same place, but the preparation methods are different from man to man leading to slightly different tastes and flavors in the efforts. That diversity of blessing from the bestowing of God's talents to several abilities helps the people of God not become "rutted." By the end of the weekend, it was truly sad to have to say goodbye, but it was a sweet refreshing that once again showed us that we are His, He cares for us, we can do better in serving Him, and we want to do better than we have before. We were blessed with good visitation from our sister churches, and we do hope and trust that they were likewise strengthened, encouraged, and edified according to our mutual love and fellowship in the kingdom.
If anyone desires to listen to the preaching efforts, they have been posted at our website: http://coolspringspbc.org/. Please join us in thanking and praising God for His rich countenance upon us in His service.
Please visit the Audio Sermons page to listen to the efforts.