Pastor Serves Through Adversity

By Sheila Allen

November 20, 2017

On a routine trip to the grocery store Joel Royce first remembers feeling numbness in his face and right arm. First responders at the fire station initially diagnosed the 36 year old with a stroke and rushed him to the hospital. Several hours later the pastor of First Baptist Church of Castle Rock, WA, learned he had glioblastoma, the most common cancer that begins in the brain. But cancer does not define Royce, nor do other challenges faced in his life.

 

“I was raised in a United Pentecostal church and my dad was ordained,” said Royce, who remembers feeling pressure to come forward in repentance and speak in tongues every Sunday. “But when my dad returned after being deployed in Desert Shield, our life was never the same and my parents divorced when I was 15. I lost respect for him and religion.”

 

Royce felt he didn’t have anyone to trust and look up to, and began to “party and chase girls.” It was while he was attending Eastern Oregon University in pursuit of a physical education and health degree that he met his wife, Leslie.

 

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Refugee Shepherds New Flock

By Sheila Allen

November 20, 2017

The commitment to Christ and God’s calling on his life came with great cost to Pastor Cing Sawm Sang.

Born and raised in Myanmar, Sang grew up with loving Christian parents.

 

“Since before I was born, my parents were praying for me and during my childhood, they dedicated me unto the Lord to do his ministry with my life,” said Sang.” Afterwards, when I grew up, my parents told me about all these things. So I couldn’t neglect God’s plan as well as my parent’s vision of my calling.”

As his parents encouraged and loved him, God also spoke to him through many Bible passages after he professed faith in Jesus 20 years ago.

 

“Portions of the scripture challenged me very much to preach the gospel and to feed his lambs and take care of his sheep, which means to do his ministry,” Sang stated. “Therefore, I began God’s ministry in our church and in our village, Thimang, in the Chin State of Burma. Also I preached the gospel in different churches and to different peoples as well.”

 

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2017 NWBC Annual Meeting

By Cameron Crabtree

November 20, 2017

EUGENE, Ore. -- When Northwest Baptists from 15 churches organized formally as a convention in 1948, they embraced as part of their mission: “blessing of the world.” As messengers to the Northwest Baptist Convention’s annual meeting convened Nov. 7-8 in Eugene, OR, the theme of “blessing” once again was prominent.

 

“Northwest Baptists were placed by God in our communities as a blessing to the peoples where we live,” said Randy Adams, NWBC executive director. “As we live the gospel in righteousness and truth, as we walk in the way of the Lord, the gospel message that we speak becomes clear and powerful to the watching world.”

 

The gathering – which drew more than 290 messengers and more than 70 registered guests from 133 churches -- began by welcoming 25 churches into the NWBC network, bringing the total number of convention-affiliated churches to 517.

 

During a brief business session, messengers elected a slate of new officers, a 2018 ministry budget and a regional offering goal of $120,000 for next year.

 

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Northwest Baptists Celebrate New Churches

November 20, 2017

Summit Life Church began weekly services in Issaquah, WA in September. Pastor Will Forrest counts it a great privilege to be on mission in such a beautiful community. Summit Life Church exists to bring people to faith and help them grow in it, experiencing the abundant life found in Jesus.

 

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Human Dignity

By Sheila Allen

November 20, 2017

“To assault a human is the same theologically as attacking God,” declared Matthew Savage, lead pastor of Journey Church in Everett, WA, and presenter of a topical study on human dignity held during the annual meeting of the Northwest Baptist Convention.

 

“Today, our secular age doesn’t believe in the spiritual self behind our physical reality.” 

Savage and associate pastor Luke Emerson reminded participants that when God forms us in the womb, it is applied at all stages of life.

“Man receives authority as an image of God,” Savage stated. “We belong to him, as he is our creator and has rights over us. Man is a fitting vessel as an image bearer of God and is central to God’s plan of salvation. But human dignity is assaulted and denied at every stage of life.”

 

People typically do not like anything that restricts their freedom and will seek to eliminate things that stands in the way of the ‘me first’ rule, according to Savage.

 

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Complete November-December 2017 publication

2017 September-October.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [15.5 MB]