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Sure Has Been a Long Time Since….

This week, I am writing blogs to the family of First Baptist Church, Broken Arrow, OK and to Community Baptist Church in Coweta, OK (a campus of FBC, Broken Arrow).  These wonderful people who are deeply committed to serving our LORD in each of these communities of faith are about to do something this Sunday, Dec. 8, that they have not done in 33 years. 

Dr. Matt Brooks will be presented by the Pastor Search Team as the New Pastor candidate to be affirmed by vote of the church this Sunday. Our Search Team was ordained by God for “a time such as this”. They have done a remarkable job in planning, praying through and conducting the search for our new leader.

The church adopted a transition plan in August 2018.  That plan was immediately implemented.  A Pastor Search Team was elected in March 2019 and began the process of getting organized in order to find the new pastor for our church. From the first days of their selection by the church, the Search Team first spent time in prayer seeking counsel and leadership from the LORD.  As they discussed openly with each other their respective desires in the process of seeking out this man, they made those their prayer requests for God to direct them. The Team was made aware of a search group called Vanderbloemen.  This Christian Search Firm works with churches and Christian ministries to assist in the search process of those seeking new leaders.  

In early October, eleven names out of over 100 applicants were brought to our Search Team from Vanderblomen’s research based on the data and input that they had received from numerous meetings with our Search Team and a wide cross-section of our membership.  During three stages of interviews, our Team narrowed the group of names they received to three men.  After extensive interviews and a site visit, one name rose to the top of the list of all seven Search Team members.  On yesterday, December 1, the church was informed that the name of the man they are unanimously recommending is that of Dr. Matt Brooks.  Dr. Brooks is currently serving as the “Associate Pastor – Online Campus” at Prestonwood Baptist Church in Dallas. Prior to that he has served as Senior Pastor in churches in New Mexico, Alabama, and Mississippi.

Over the next few days, our church will prepare for a full weekend of opportunities to meet, to get acquainted with, and to hear from Dr. Matt.  Obviously, the Brooks are eagerly preparing to make the trip to Broken Arrow to begin to meet our church staff, leadership, and membership of both campuses.

All of the weekend’s activities will culminate on Sunday, December 8, when both campuses will meet at FBCBA for one huge morning service so that all can see Dr. Matt Brooks, Bren, and their children, meet them, and hear him preach. Immediately following his sermon, Don Thompson, Chairman of our Search Team, will give instructions to the church regarding how the vote by ballot will be done.  The church will pray, vote, and sing.  The ballots will be counted, and the results will be reported to the church as soon as the ballots are counted.  By the time FBC and CBC leave worship, the congregation will know the result and welcome their new pastor.

Surely has been a long time since our church was at this intersection!  I praise the LORD that as we come to this time in our church, there is a sweet spirit of unity, focus, and joy as we anticipate this new beginning.  May the LORD lead us and direct us by His Mighty Hand.