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The apostle Paul often used the analogy of running a race when illustrating our pursuit of Christ. The pursuit of Christlikeness is a daily exercise that all true believers should endeavor to achieve throughout our lifetime. (Romans 8:28-30) Therefore, the Christian life is more like running a marathon than a sprint. It requires discipline, endurance, and conviction. Too many well-intentioned people have fallen by the wayside because the race became too difficult and the path too hard to follow. But there is great joy for those who persevere to the end knowing that their faith was indeed genuine. The Scripture is very clear that those who persevere will also bear fruit. (Matthew 13:3-9, 18-23)
During the past six years your church leaders have been on a journey to seek the Lord in a new and fresh way. The elders and your staff have been examining our methodology to see what truly enhances and presses forward the advancement of the gospel. Sometimes the road has been easy and peaceful. At other times the road has been rocky and challenging. But we recognize that we are in this race for the long haul.
We are not seeking to do that which is popular, but that which is right and best for the kingdom of God and for our people as disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ.
With respect to our budgets over the past six years, we have held fast to our intent to make paying off the debt on our facilities a priority. It has meant that we have had to tighten our belts in some areas and make sacrifices in other areas. Now we are reaping the rewards and benefits of these efforts, and experiencing financial freedom as a church body to be fully engaged in the mission of making disciples of all the nations as given in Matthew 28:18-20.
The goal of being debt free may be admirable, but it is not the end game. We now have the capacity to expand our outreach as a church body to the ends of the earth as the Lord has directed us (Acts 1:8).
Many of you have generously given above the tithe to help us achieve the goal of eliminating this massive debt. As we consider how the Lord might have us to give generously in the future, your leaders would invite you to consider joining with us in prioritizing Give2GO as our primary focus beyond our tithes for the general budget that provides for the regular ministries of TCBC.
The fact is, we cannot expect the “world” to come to us. We have to go where the people are whether across the street or around the world. So let’s run the race of the Great Commission with endurance, and do this for the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. May our lives, and our church, truly serve as a beacon of light in a world that is filled with the darkness of sin. May we see the glory of the Lord shine into the hearts of men and women everywhere.
May God help us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus as we run this race with endurance - for He is the author and finisher of our faith. (Hebrews 12:1-2)Pastor Gene