When the Apostle Paul wrote to the believers in the church at Philippi, he made it a priority to celebrate their partnership.
As the letter begins, Paul says:
I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, 4 always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, 5 because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. (Philippians 1:3-5, ESV)
Like Paul, I want to celebrate several dimensions of our partnership in the gospel today.
Partnership in membership. One of the ways our partnership is defined is through church membership. Our church began in 1951 with the commitments of 203 charter members. At the end of our recently concluded reporting year (October 1, 2017-September 30, 2018), our membership stood at 4,878 (up 123 over last year). For every Christ-follower committed to membership at Ingleside, I give thanks for your partnership in the gospel!
Partnership in giving. The New Testament reveals that from the very first days of Jesus’ ministry, the mission required money. The same is true today. That’s why I’m celebrating that over the past year 1,968 individuals representing 1,161 families (both up over the previous year) invested money in the ministries of our church. More dollars were given to support our disciple-making mission than ever before. Our financial partnership is strong, and that’s worth celebrating!
Partnership in going. Jesus expects all who follow him to be involved in going with the gospel. Over the past year, more of us than ever before were involved in missions locally (1.036), across our state and nation (183), and around our world (63). For every Inglesider who is actively sharing the gospel, I give thanks and celebrate your partnership!
Partnership in sending. Our church joins with more than 47,000 other cooperating churches to send missionaries and plant churches through the International Mission Board (IMB) and the North American Mission Board (NAMB) of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC). That means we currently help send and support more than 3,600 overseas missionaries and 5,200 missionaries in North America. Our Cooperative Program investment of $428,393 this past year was the largest ever. And, we are directly helping plant churches in Denver and Portland. So, for our partners in sending, I give thanks!
The bottom line: I have a heart filled with gratitude to God for your partnership in the gospel. Thank you!