I feel badly that I did not send out prayer requests in September, because I know the prayers of God's people are powerful and effective. Below are things that are on my heart and that I pray about often. Please join me in praying. I am so thankful for you.
Praises: To God be the Glory for the 11 baptisms in our first year! Whoa, go God! Here is a LINK to the most recent baptism celebration video. In fact, we had our whole worship service on the beach! It was a great time and a high tide...deep water one might say! - Our Next Generation ministries are growing and we are sharing Christ with many children & youth. - I had the opportunity to pray before the IOP Connector Run and to pray in Jesus name! (Praying was a win for the Kingdom...my running was a loss for my ego, ha!)
Requests from the pastor's heart:
1. Our Leadership Team (picture above) attended a 2 day/1 night training this past week in Myrtle Beach sponsored by the SC Baptist Convention and called Immersion. We were challenged to be leaders that truly 'makes disciples'. I believe that the Lord has been and is currently shifting our paradigm on how to make disciples. One way that a shift needs to take place is that we need to have more non-believing friends, neighbors and family in our lives consistently - we are called to deeply love them and share the Gospel.
The team had a great time bonding and being challenged at the training. We have fun as a team and hopefully we don't take ourselves too serious! God has given us a dynamic team of leaders at DeepWater, I feel very blessed to serve with this team. Please pray for us.
Leadership Team from left to right: Chris Wiksell, Nathan Dewey, Jessica Coleman, Paul Coleman, Jo Giles, Angelica Annichino, Julianna Fletcher *Not pictured, Susannah Wiksell
2. New Members - on Sept. 22 we celebrated the 1 year anniversary of our launch and we also celebrated the 25 founding faith family members being presented and commissioned. Pray with me that our members will be cared-for, challenged, counted-on and corrected as God lead's. I pray that this group of faith family members would feel empowered to be the many parts of the Body.
3. For our D-Groups - we have a women's group on Thursday nights and men's group on Friday mornings. The fellowship is honest and real, and the groups are finding the right balance of the Word and relationships. Pray for meaningful relationships, for spiritual growth and for salvation to come through these groups. For future leaders with in our faith family membership to consider leading starting next January.
4. Salvation - I pray that our faith family would be bold in living out the Gospel and that we would share the faith. We are a grassroots movement and our growth will come as men, women & children come to faith in Jesus. I ask God to help us to be people that are 'workers in the harvest'. This fall & early next year we will be taking steps to be more and more intentional in our focus on sharing Jesus with others.
5. More Strong Missionally-Minded Believers - there are believers in our community that I believe are to join with us in this work. Being a part of a church plant is faith-building, stretching and exciting and I am asking the Lord to send folks (particularly on the islands) that are in need of a missional-shot-in-the-arm and a fresh leading. If we are to reach this geography, we need more laborers in the harvest.
6. Dominican Republic Connection - pray for us as we partner with the town of Los Botados in the D.R. We have stepped out in faith, believing that the Lord was calling us to global missions as a young church. Our faith fam is excited and has accepted the challenge of sponsoring children in Los Botados, currently we have filled 15 sponsorship's that will help share the love of Christ and bring children from poverty.
7. Building of our own - so this is a bold request and we trust the Lord's timing, but it would truly be a miracle for us to have a facility on one of the islands. We are growing and doing well without owning our own space, but as we think long-term it is on my mind that one day the Lord would bless us in this way. Another prayer request would be that maybe another church might allow us to use their building on Sunday morning (during a time that doesn't interfere with their service) on either of the islands, having a Sunday morning service is something I believe would be very good.
8. Personal - pray that the Lord would give me more courage to lead in evangelism and disciple-making, for Jessica and I to remain connected and that we would prioritize our relationship, for Ella, Lily & Maci to love Jesus and follow Him, for family members that are without Christ, for the joy of the Lord to fill our home!
Thank you for praying, I am so thankful for you and your willingness to lift up DeepWater Church. Have a wonderful day and may God bless you.
In Christ's Joy, Paul