On Friday I flew to lovely Fredericton, New Brunswick to meet my good friend Perry Edwards of Sovereign Grace Baptist Church here in Geary/Oromocto/Haneytown. To be honest, I am not sure where I am - everyone seems to call this place something different!
It has been a lovely time, meeting the people of the church and getting the privilege of preaching on some 5 occasions. Friday night we talked evangelism and church planting. Last night we met with "The Holy Club" - a men's group - to flesh those things out more particularly. This morning I preached on Romans 3 and justification - What is a Christian. Tonight I intend to preach on the Blessings of Being Justified, from Romans 5.
This is a military town and a number of the men in the church work in nearby CFB Gagetown. My respect and appreciation for our military has sky-rocketed this weekend. I am proud to have men like this serving our country and I have learned a lot from them. One thing I learned is that they can stand the cold better than me!
Wikipedia suggests I discovered what Stage Two Hypothermia is like:
Body temperature drops by 2°C - 4°C (3.6°F - 7.2°F, or between 95°F - 91.4°F). Shivering becomes more violent. Muscle miscoordination becomes apparent. Movements are slow and labored, accompanied by a stumbling pace and mild confusion, although the victim may appear alert. Surface blood vessels contract further as the body focuses its remaining resources on keeping the vital organs warm. Victim becomes pale."
They led me to a nearby car, drove me to a warm home and I waited for my breath to warm up under the covers - it is strange to exhale cold air!
Having military men adds another tension to church life here. One fine young fellow is shipping out to Afghanistan on Wednesday. His pregnant wife and two children will, of course, stay here. Six months of fighting Taleban is a long time. Pray for Neal. Others will be leaving shortly, some for overseas locations and others to different bases in Canada. Most are here less than three years.
I have also learned that God has His people everywhere. It is always humbling to me to be asked to preach anywhere, but one thing I thoroughly enjoy is hearing the stories of God's works of grace in the hearts and lives of people I have never met before. We can become so myopic. It is wonderful to step out of that and be reminded that the Sovereign is accomplishing His plan.
There will be much more to write later. I just had a few seconds to sit and check email and such and thought I would post.
Wishing I was with GFC today eating in the basement and hearing the Word of God! Yet, so thankful to be here and ministering it!