Jay Announced His Retirement after 29 Years at First Baptist.

The seasons change. As summer gives way to fall and fall yields to winter, in the same way God orders the life-cycle of His children. On September 11th the calendar shouted, “Jayboy, you are 65!” The years have wings and they have ushered in a new season for us.

After diligent prayer, thoughtful consideration, and consulting with wise counsel, Mary Ruth and I have determined this is the right time to start the process of handing the baton of Pastoral Leadership to a new Shepherd for our beloved First Baptist Family. My retirement will be June 30, 2020.

A CALL TO PRAYER

CHURCHWIDE FAST TO SEEK FATHER GOD’S CHOICE OF A NEW PASTOR FOR FIRST BAPTIST

EXPLANATION:

The Pastor Search Committee, in conjunction with the FBC Prayer Team, is asking that each FBC member join in a united time of prayer and fasting until a new pastor is secured.

The 24-hour fast is from dinner on Sunday night to dinner on Monday night. Please choose from the following options:

A. The 1st Monday of each month

B. Two (2) Mondays a month

C. Every Monday

The fast can be of one’s own choosing as led by the Lord.

PREPARATION:

Psalm 66:18  |  “If I regard sin and baseness in my heart [that is, if I know it is there and do nothing about it], The Lord will not hear [me]…”

So as you begin your fast, please meditate on the following:

A. Praise the Lord for what He has done for you (Psalm 100)

B. Thanksgiving for Jesus and for His shed blood (Ephesians 2:13)

C. Confession of any sins that are separating you from the Lord (1 John 1:9)

D. Worship the Lord for Who He is (Psalm 2:11)

E. Spiritual Armor this is a spiritual battle, requiring spiritual weapons (Ephesians 6:10-18)

INTERCESSION:

Isaiah 55:11  |  “So will My word be which goes out of My mouth; It will not return to Me void (useless, without result), Without accomplishing what I desire, And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.”

Pray for the Pastor Search Committee members to be:

1. Unified in all they do (Psalm 133:1)

2. Protected from enemy attacks (Psalm 91)

3. Anointed with the Holy Spirit as they interview each candidate (Acts 1:8)

4. Be respectful of each other (Philippians 2:3-4)

5. Be very confidential in their work (Proverbs 11:13)

6. Practice an active prayer life, with fasting, while serving in this capacity (Matthew 6:5-18)

Pray for the FBC family to:

1. Pray for each member of the Pastor Search Committee on a regular basis (Ephesians 1:16)

2. Pray for God’s man to fill this position (1 Samuel 16:4-13)

3. To respect the decision of the Committee in regards to the candidate chosen (1 Corinthians 16:16)

Pray for our future Pastor and his family:

1. That his decision to accept the call to FBC be extremely clear (Isaiah 30:21)

2. That he be a man who seeks the guidance of the Lord with his whole heart (Deuteronomy 10:12)

3. That he be a man of humility and obedience to the Word (Psalms 119:105)

4. That he exhibits the fruit of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22)

The selection of our new pastor will be a process. Let us not grow weary, but remember Matthew 7:7-8:

“Ask and keep on asking and it will be given to you; seek and keep on seeking and you will find; knock and keep on knocking and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who keeps on asking receives, and he who keeps on seeking finds, and to him who keeps on knocking, it will be opened.”

Pastor Search Committee Report
May 26, 2020

My last report observed that while obstacles imposed by the mandated social distancing restrictions preclude in-person meetings, we continue to pursue God’s chosen servant for our church using telephonic meetings and online platforms like Zoom. We are frequently meeting and making progress, and we are deeply grateful for your continued prayers and encouraging support. Our attendance has been perfect. Meetings commence with robust prayer, followed by open and transparent discussions of the candidates, and conclude with a time of sustained prayer joined by many, if not all, of the committee members.

Our focus is the leadership of the Holy Spirit as we review candidates’ resumes and profiles, online sermons, church services, and multi-year church statistics: including church membership, Sunday School attendance, church ministries, WMU, mission activities, and financial aspects such as giving history which includes the Cooperative Program, Annie Armstrong, Lottie Moon, etc. Unfortunately, we are not able to make personal visits to church services because there are none to visit during this unprecedented season.

We are narrowing the list of candidates. We have plotted the course. We are working diligently, and we will reach the objective. Please continue to fast and pray. For 190 years God has proven His love for our church providing exceptional leaders. He will not fail us now.

In the live-streamed service on Sunday, May 17, Pastor Jay affirmed his commitment to serve as our pastor until the COVID-19 pandemic crisis is over, unless we have called our new pastor before then. Thank you, Jay. Let’s be faithful to pray for Jay and his family, and that God will prepare our new pastor for the mantle of leadership that will fall to him.

“And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” So “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!” “Be anxious for nothing…” and “Pray without ceasing…” THANK YOU AND GOD BLESS YOU.

Douglas McElvy  //  Chairman

PASTOR SEARCH COMMITTEE

justin aday

JOHN ASHWORTH

andy birchfield

RODNEY BLEDSOE

Jane Burdeshaw

JANE FERGUSON

Jim frankum

STUART HENDON

BILLY IRVIN

BILL LAMBERT

caden lockett

Basil Manly

DAVID MARTIN

bill mccrary

Douglas McElvy

TANYA MCLEMORE

STEVE ROBERTS

James WHitehead

SOO SEOK YANG

If you have questions, please email Douglas McElvy or Andy Birchfield.