With much prayer, counsel, and evident leading by the Lord, we have chosen to plant a church in the coastal town of Port Macquarie or “Port.” It is a “town” of over 73,000 in population, and it is growing rapidly. It is situated right between the major cities of Sydney and Brisbane, and it does NOT have a single, independent, fundamental Baptist church.
In the past months, we’ve allowed the Lord to show us where He would have us. We’ve received much advice in the past from preacher friends about starting a church in Port Macquarie, but we weren’t for sure this is what the Lord would have for us. I received a call at the beginning of January from a man who had been living in Port Macquarie for a year. He’d been searching for a church of like faith but couldn’t find one in “Port.” He and his family had been travelling an hour and a half to another church every Sunday. He then found out that we were possibly starting a church in Port Macquarie. After our conversation, they started attending our church in Taree a week later and haven’t missed a Sunday, even though it’s an hour’s drive away. He also mentioned to me that there were many others like him in Port Macquarie who were looking for a church like ours. This was like another “Macedonian Call.” We perceived that the Lord was trying to direct us towards “Port.”
With the prospect of starting a church there, we started looking for homes to rent. We saw a home on a major road, with a large barn-like shed, where we could possibly meet when the church gets big enough. It is a very highly sought-after property. We put an application in two Thursdays ago, and we visited the home the following Saturday. We loved it, and it was well suited for the visions we have for our ministry. The realtor mentioned that it would take about 48 hours until we heard from them. On the one-hour drive home, we prayed hard that if the Lord didn’t want us there, He would close this door. When we got home, I received a call from the realtor, saying we had gotten approved for the home and that the owner wanted us to live there. Praise the Lord!
Things have been progressing very quickly, and we’re thrilled about what the Lord is going to do in Port Macquarie. Last Sunday in Forster, we baptised six young people, including Elin, our second child. Please pray for these as they continue to grow. Please pray for Living Hope Baptist Church as we celebrate our 10-year anniversary in February. The 30th of January marked our one-year anniversary of working alongside Pastor Valeran and Living Hope Baptist Church. We are grateful for the time spent and will be spending with them as we continue to co-labour in the ministry.
Thank you for your continued prayers and support!
Your servant in Christ,