Celebrating God's goodness to Maranatha this year

1 Peter 2:9 – But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”

We have been called by God for a specific purpose – the purpose of PRAISING God! All throughout the New Testament we find the explicit instruction to give thanks.

  • Eph 5:20 – “Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

  • 1 Thess 5:16-18 – “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

  • Col 3:17 – “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”

  • Heb 13:15 – Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.

These verses underscore the significance of thanksgiving and praise in the Christian life, yet if you were asked to give 10 specific reasons for praise this year, would you be able to do it? My problem is often that I remember the challenges, but forget the answers to prayer. I tend to dwell on the problems, and forget the blessings. So, at the outset of this 20/20 we thought it would be appropriate to celebrate God’s goodness to Maranatha this year. Here are the many ways God has answered prayer and shown His faithfulness to our congregation.

30 Years of Faithful Ministry – Maranatha has enjoyed the stability of long- standing pastors since its beginning in 1965. Pastor Kenoyer’s ministry reaches back to January 1987, and because of his godly leadership, humble example and faithful teaching, Maranatha has enjoyed many years of God’s favor. We celebrate God’s work through his life, and praise the Lord for his leadership.

New Pastors added to the team – This year marked another milestone in seeing God answer prayer that began 7 years ago. With the addition of our Community Life Pastor (Pastor David and Brenda) and our Family Ministries Pastor (Pastor Ben and Ashley), we have witnessed the culmination of years of planning, praying, and waiting. God has truly blessed our church with these new partners in ministry.

Pictorial Directory – This resource has been an incredible blessing in so many ways. Not only has it helped us with names and faces, but it has brought all of the contact information for our church family together and made it accessible.

Pictorial Directory – This resource has been an incredible blessing in so many ways. Not only has it helped us with names and faces, but it has brought all of the contact information for our church family together and made it accessible.

Scheduling Tool for Children’s Ministry – We are grateful for the number of children at Maranatha. What a blessing to think of the strategic opportunity we have to build up the next generation of godly saints. One way we can connect you to this opportunity is by giving you the chance to serve. Our new scheduling tool gives you the visibility you need so you can plan to take part in this strategic ministry.

Our New Website – For the past year we have been pushing our website to the next level so that we can maximize our reach and assist our congregation. We have added new tools, new resources, new forms, new ways to give, and new channels of information. Our purpose is to use this venue to introduce ourselves to the community and to give you access to the things you’re looking for on a daily basis. As a result, we have seen a rise in our first-time guests, and have people from 26 different countries watching our services throughout the month. That is cause for praise!

Spring and Summer Missions Trips – This year we’ve had the joy of sending individuals around the world to advance the gospel. Our people have gone to the Gambia, to Montenegro, to Costa Rica, and to central Ohio to partner with local missionaries and care for indigenous people. God has used your encouragement, prayer, and finances to advance His cause and bless the nations.

Installing two AC Units for the Gym – Because of your financial stewardship, our church was able to replace two faulty air conditioning units for the gymnasium. These represent a huge financial expense that we were able to absorb due to your faithful giving over the years.

A New Generation of Leaders – We have a growing number of volunteers and staff helpers who oversee the various parts of our ministry. We are blessed by your faithful service and willing spirit, and trust that God will use your efforts to serve the body of Christ.

Neighboring Initiative – Over the past couple years we have sought to build relationships with our community and find ways to connect with them. One of the things you may have noticed is our new ball field. That is not only a resource to our fellowship, but is intended to reach into our immediate community. Already a couple of small groups have used this resource and made some valuable connections. We have also invested in a solar powered street light for our bus stop. We trust that it will help our neighbors at the bus stop to feel safe, and will help us see them better when we turn into the church.

Chinese Students – In July Mark Ruegsegger brought 23 Chinese students and 2 Chinese faculty to our church for a service. Afterwards, we fed them lunch, gave them a Chinese Bible, and took the time to engage them in conversation and games. We welcome these kinds of opportunities and rejoice in the privilege of serving these young people in this way.

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