Beyond the Arkansas boarder, the foothills of Southeast Missouri are beautiful. Recently I traveled up Highway 67 to visit the congregation of Mount Zion Baptist Church in Poplar Bluff.
Pastor Matt Johnson serves bi-vocationally. More and more, I am becoming convinced that bi-vocational ministry is not a limitation –but an opportunity (to learn more read this). Matt agrees. His career as a human resources director for a large corporation enables him to meet unbelievers and relate better to the members of his church. He explained that when a member realizes that their pastor is ministering in addition to a 40 hour-per-week job, they feel like he is “one of them.” This creates an environment where members are more prone to share ministry responsibilities and take ownership in the work of the church.
On Sunday morning, you can feel this sense of shared responsibility within the congregation. During morning worship, a myriad of volunteers led music, played instruments (the church is full of talent), and conducted elements of the service.
Also during the service, I noticed a full range of age groups represented. Young families with children sat next to retirees and middle-aged couples. A sense of family filled the environment.
The church was gracious in allowing me to preach and share about the ministry of DiscipleGuide. I certainly hope to visit again soon!