We’ve officially been partnered and worshiping with our sister congregation Guthrie First UMC for an entire month, and I wanted to take a moment to share an update on how things are going. Eagerly accepting such a partnership is exciting but can also prompt some anxiety between both congregations. Yet from both churches I have encountered nothing but enthusiasm and inquisitiveness!
For the month of July, Guthrie FUMC has averaged 57 in worship—an almost doubling from the previously reported 30. This kind of response way surpasses any preconceived assumptions I had! When you factor in all the changes—particularly earlier worship time and new music styles—this kind of worship growth tells me two things. First, the Guthrie congregation has shown me exceptional spiritual maturity in being open to how the Holy Spirit is moving in this partnership. The kind of faith it takes to not only agree to this partnership, but to also dedicate themselves to faithfully attending is incredibly inspiring and humbling.
The second thing I’ve learned in this partnership is how blessed we are at Edmond First! From the entire worship team to our members who have been praying for this Guthrie ministry to bloom, I thank God every night for my appointment. We have families who attend Guthrie every Sunday, and I am consistently surprised at who from church decides to “drop in” to support. Each Sunday it seems there is a friendly face from church who decided to wake up early and make the drive to worship with our sister congregation. You cannot know the energy it gives me when I see your faces while I’m up there preaching.
Our youth are continuing to partner in programming; Guthrie youth meet on Sunday night, led by Rev. Kevin Tankerson, and we’ve been joining together for monthly fellowship activities. This week both youth groups went bowling at Guthrie’s 89er Bowl to kick off Youth Week 2019, and yesterday we explored Downtown OKC.
I ask that you continue to pray for this partnership. Please keep asking me how it is going because I have so many stories to tell from just one month! If you are interested in further supporting Guthrie, you can join us for a concert at Guthrie FUMC to hear Kyle Dillingham & Horseshoe Road fresh from the Grand Ole Opry! Stop by the church office to buy your tickets for $15!