Bennies

How you folks doing? I’m Will Bransom, pastor of acquisitions. No, I’m just kidding. I’m the pastor of outreach and evangelism. That’s a little joke around here.

Ha. That’s funny. That’s funny, right Denise?

No, in all seriousness, I’m so happy you’ve come by. Your card indicates that you’re interested in becoming members; is that right?

Uh, yes. We think so. We’ve been coming for a while now. And it seems like this might be the right move for our family at this, uh, juncture, time.

Wonderful. Fabulous. Are you folks members of another church somewhere?

No. I don’t want to speak for Denise. I don’t want to speak for you, honey. But we’re not really, we haven’t been very much in the church. I never was. My parents were basically hell raisers from the 60s. Sex, drugs, and. My dad was, uh, well he wasn’t inclined to. But now Denise, she was very religious. Comes from a very religious family, right Denise?

Yes, I come from a very religious family. We were always in church. I kind of rebelled, you know? When I got older. So Caleb and me, no, we haven’t. There’s no church.

I understand. No, we have all sorts of folks here at Baybridge. All kinds. We’ve got serious men of God and their families. I mean missionaries, pastors, just real godly folks. And then we’ve got folks with tattoos, ride in on Harleys, never opened a Bible. No, but the Holy Spirit does not discriminate. You gotta meet Chet Reeve. He was – I’m dead serious – in the Hell’s Angels. He got saved – I kid you not – in a tent meeting at a rock concert twenty years go. You wouldn’t think it to look at him, but Chet’s a serious Bible scholar. I don’t mean seminary and that, but a dynamic, spirit filled, anointed man of God. He has a powerful ministry to bikers and, you know, just to some of the fringe folk. You’ll see him if you’re around here much. Maybe you already have. You can’t miss him.

Wow, that’s amazing. That’s amazing, right Denise?

That is. That is truly amazing.

Yeah. No, I’ll have to make sure you meet Chet at some point. You’ll like him, Caleb. Not that you’re. I mean you just seem like Chet’s kind of guy, you know? Down to earth. No nonsense.

Anyhoo, let’s talk about what you need in order to join BCFC. Membership requirements are very simple, folks. Nothing that’s not right there in the scriptures. You don’t have to know a lot about the Bible. You don’t have to have your life in order. There’s only one requirement. You have to be saved. And that’s something we can sort out with a couple of easy questions.

Now you both believe in God, obviously. I mean you wouldn’t be here, if…

Oh no, yeah. We both believe in God. I mean Denise since she was a kid. And even with my bad influences, she never. Even in those bad days, bad times – Denise knows what I’m talking about – I always, you know, God. You gotta believe in God. How do you not?

Right. Of course that’s just the starting place. Now the next part is the critical thing. Do you both believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God? And that he died on the cross for your sins? And that God raised him from the dead on the third day?

Oh yes. I’ve believed that since I was a little girl. Yes, absolutely.

Yeah, and I didn’t know about any of that stuff before. I mean I sorta heard it but not really. But ever since I heard – you know with Denise to kind of explain it – I believed it. It only makes sense. Die a horrible death like that. Innocent man. I mean, what would that be if it didn’t. I don’t think God would let a man like Jesus die for nothin, right?

Absolutely Caleb. How can people say he died for nothing? If you just think about it, it all makes perfect sense. God wouldn’t let his precious son die for nothing. That would be. Why would he do that?

I know, right? That’s what Denise’s family has always said. That kind of thing.

Absolutely. Okay, so have you formally said a prayer and told God that you’ve trusted Jesus? Asked him into your heart to be your savior?

Yeah, you know how you guys say that prayer at the end of the service on Sundays? That prayer where after you say it, the pastor says that you’ve just accepted Jesus and you can get a free Bible from the bookstore? We did that. Got our Bibles. Filled out the cards. Well, Denise we think might have already been saved when she was a little girl. But she wasn’t absolutely sure so she did it again. And I hope it’s okay but she took a Bible too.

Caleb! I wasn’t saved back then. It was all head knowledge, you know? But I think it’s the real thing this time, so I took a Bible because…

Oh, absolutely. No, we’re happy to give you both a Bible. Thrilled. I wish more people wanted one. Well then, that’s it. You’re both believers. You’ve been saved and sanctified by the blood of Jesus. And you’re full members of the church family now. Praise God, two more sheep have returned to the fold, as Jesus would say.

Awesome. That wasn’t hard.

No Caleb, it wasn’t hard. And that’s because grace is a free gift of God. You can’t earn it. It’s supposed to be easy like that. It’s where so many churches go wrong. They want to add all this extra stuff on top of the simple gospel. We don’t do that at Baybridge Community. We keep it simple. We keep it biblical. The old time gospel.

Right. Yes. I think that’s how Denise’s folks are too, aren’t they sweetie? Your folks are kinda like that, right? They know their Bible backwards and forwards. They’re very serious about it.

Well, praise God that’s us too. Old time gospel. Now we’ve got the modern music though, am I right? How you folks liking that praise band at the 11:00 service? They rock, don’t they?

Oh yeah, that’s part of what brought us here. I told Caleb that the music was always the part I loved about church when I was a girl.

Praise the Lord. You folks mind if we prayed together?

Oh no, go ahead reverend.

You can call me pastor Will. Or just Will if you like.

Father God we just lift you up here today. We’re so grateful for brother Caleb and sister Denise, so grateful for your tender mercies, your peace that passes all understanding. You guided them here and into your blessed salvation. And I just pray that you give them a double portion of your spirit, a holy anointing, so they may be blessed with spiritual riches and a bounty of your grace beyond all understanding. And we just pray that in your time, you just show them their own spiritual gifts, so that, uh, they can be a blessing to your wandering children in this world. In the name of Jesus, our blessed savior, the one who bore the stripes that we might be healed and righteous in your eyes. Amen.

Amen folks, am I right?

Yes. Amen.

Okay. So I’m guessing ya’ll want to talk about your benefits package, am I right?

Benefits?

Yeah, you know, the bennies. Dear saints, you’re now children of God. Adopted, praise the Lord, into the family of Abraham. Grafted into the roots of the Jesse tree. And as Jesus said, “Little flock, it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the Kingdom.” Jesus also said, “Seek ye first the Kingdom of Heaven, and ALL these things shall be added unto you.” Amen?

Well, I never heard that before, but it sure sounds good. My mom and dad…

Denise, blessed sister, God wants to enlarge your fields. And we believe that starts right here at Baybridge Community Family Church. Take a look at these membership packets.

Okay.

If you open them, all the stuff on the left side is details you might want to look at later. There’s a complete list of our programs, Bible studies, small groups, ministries, outreach teams, you name it. On the right is all the things you’ll want to take advantage of here at BCFC.

Wow Caleb, look at all they have for the kids. Basketball, volleyball, Bible scouts?

That’s our version of the Boy Scouts. Same kind of thing, but with scripture merit badges and the parents can know that their sons are growing spiritually as well as physically. Like Jesus, we want our young boys to grow in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.

And we’ve got the Little Esthers for girls as well. Bunch of sweeties. Absolutely adorable.

You’ve got Zumba? And Pilates? Wow, there sure is a lot of stuff.

Well, there is a lot. But that’s because we want everyone to find a place where they can fit in at Baybridge, glory be to God. The thing is, Caleb, Denise, we’re supposed to be in the world, but not of the world. And our world is, well, very worldly if you know what I mean. Of the flesh. But here at Baybridge, you can invest your life in a safe community, love and serve your savior, and grow closer to God.

It’s all wonderful.

Well, the Lord has blessed us. Here’s my card. Now mostly I deal with our new families, getting them assimilated and all that. You’ll be contacted by your deacon in the next few days. He’ll be a wonderful resource for you. Our deacons are anointed men of God, called to be servants. So never hesitate to call your deacon. And Jeb is our pastor to young families. That’s families in their 20s and 30s. You’ll hear from him too. No, but of course, feel free to call me if you ever need me.

Thank you, pastor.

Pastor, the Richardsons are here for their appointment.

Thank you, Carolyn. Folks, I’m going to have to see my next family. But again, welcome to Baybridge Community Family Church.

Welcome and God bless.

 

  • http://twitter.com/velveteenrabbi Rachel Barenblat

    I. Yeah. Wow.

    Pretty far from my life as a smalltown rabbi, gotta tell you. :-)

    • http://tertiumsquid.com Gordon Atkinson

      Yeah, I would think that sounds like something from Mars to you, rabbi. And it kind of sounds like that to me to, this far removed from it. But the rhythms of the speech and the feel of the worldview has never left me.

  • http://twitter.com/noteon Keith Snyder

    My second time through, I used Ned Ryerson’s voice for pastor Will. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkW_ZkMtmlQ