Regret can haunt a church for years. Thankfully, God brings new opportunities that can erase all memory of what could have been. Years ago, when Oakdale Baptist Church was located in a rural area of Oklahoma City, a developer offered to sell the church land for future use. But the congregation declined the offer because they thought it was too expensive and couldn’t imagine ever needing room to grow. Today, Oakdale’s current leadership has refused to make the same mistake twice.
For 9-year-old Hunter Parsons, the death of his church wasn’t an option. His father, Brent Parsons, was the new pastor of Franklin Baptist in Norman, Oklahoma, and the church was in trouble.
It’s not going out on a limb if God asks you to do to it. In 2005, several founding members of New Beginning Baptist Church, Salem, Ind., took a step of faith and signed a $500,000 loan for their young congregation to build a church facility. “We shared the vision to be a church for the unchurched,” says pastor Scott Huffaker, bivocational church planter.
Funding ministry has never been the easiest task. But that hasn’t slowed down Living Word Baptist Church of Indianapolis, Indiana. The 28-year-old church found a ministry partner in WatersEdge Ministry Services, and through that partnership, Living Word also becomes a partner with other churches far and wide.
Its name may sound traditional, but Country Roads Baptist Church is anything but. The Lenox, Iowa, congregation meets in a repurposed building in an old lumber yard. There are no pews or steeple — but the church is filled with friendly faces eager to share the love of Jesus.
“It’s kind of fun that our church building is in an old lumber yard,” says Country Roads’ pastor Mitch Green. “For some people it’s a ‘Huh?’ moment, and it’s kind of an interesting take on a church building.”