Welcome to the second edition of “Chairman’s’ Chatter”! Based upon comments I have received over the past couple of weeks; the response to this forum appears favorable. I will continue to cover things that I feel are important and be a voice. This is a “good thing” as Martha Stewart might say. Whatever we do as a board we always bathe our sessions in prayer before and after each meeting. We collectively believe that God guides us to accomplish those things that are in the best interest of the congregation as a whole. We always welcome any concern that a member may bring forth after having given prayerful consideration to it. Having spent a day or two in the military, I am acutely aware that in any group situation there are going to be legitimate concerns and then there are those days that sometimes we share things “just because”: there is an open ear to hear it; we are frustrated, sad, lonely, etc. Cherokee FCC is a very open, giving, healing church body of disciplined believers. Again this is a “good thing” and it goes a long way towards being a successful voice for God, furthering His Word in our modern broken world.
On February 28th I had the very good fortune to attend the “Resurrecting the Rural Church Conference” held at the Sutherland FCC with several other members of our congregation. The keynote given by Minister John Erickson brought the conference into immediate perspective as he put a new spin on things that we already knew! Namely that we are rural and by Geographic’s we are few in number and are widely dispersed. However, instead of viewing these things as negatives, the emphasis was on the positive aspects of being “in the sticks”. The balance of the conference sessions focused on giving those in attendance new insights and ideas on how to communicate better; network more effectively and to find ways to “mine” resources that we may not have recognized that we possess. Some of the ideas that I have will be looked at in depth in future issues.
I have often found that it is very easy to “get comfortable” in doing things a certain way, and after having done them that way for a time, it then becomes difficult (nee unpleasant) to change them. We all fall into comfortable “habits”. It is becoming increasingly clear that for our congregation to continue to prosper and grow we will need to be willing to step out of our “comfort zones”. In the leadership module Mark Patton and I found a couple of things to be true. First, all of the churches represented are having similar problems. More importantly we discovered that an effective “cure” for nearly all of these issues is an increased investment of time, not more money!
In closing I am most grateful for the expressions of sympathy at the recent sudden death of my friend and long time co-worker Thomas W. Baack of Le Mars. I would ask that your prayers continue to go out to his widow Janet, his son Matt, his wife Amy and their young daughter Clara and well as Tom’s siblings. Have a great week in the Lord and continue to encourage each other and feel free to share your comments. I can be reached via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone: (712) 375-5035.