Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Kim, Evan, Ethan, Eli (dog) and I embarked on an exciting journey on December 1st. That was moving day. It was a bittersweet experience leaving our friends, our house, a fruitful ministry, and the feeling of comfort that comes with familiarity. We were following a course that God had charted for us. We knew not what lay ahead, but we knew for certain we were in His perfect will and in His hand.
Kim’s parents and Larry and Pat Dodd came on two separate weekends to help us get settled in. It is amazing how quickly our house was transformed into a home. We are blessed to be living in a brand new rental home 10 miles south of Center, TX. Our house in Malakoff is on the market. We are trusting God will send us a buyer soon just as He did when we moved from Texarkana to Malakoff a few years ago. The house in Malakoff is a concern, but I am not worried about it oddly enough.
Center is a town of 5,678 in deep East Texas. Nacogdoches is 30 minutes to our southwest, Carthage is 30 minutes to our north and Shreveport is an hour to our northeast. We are only 15 minutes from the Louisiana border (Logansport). The economy is strong here as a natural gas boon has begun. Other employers include Tyson Foods (chickens), General Shelters (Texas’ largest portable building manufacturer), and Hallmark.
I have begun my ministry at First Baptist Church. My position is Minister of Music, Media, & Senior Adults. The choir is very good. They really like to be challenged with difficult musical selections. I’m working them hard, and they keep coming back for more. The choir is about 40 strong now and growing every week. The senior adult ministry is a real joy. We have about 20 who sing a half hour program at the nursing homes on the 1st, 2nd, and 4th Mondays. We have a city wide meal and program on 3rd Mondays. Twenty are signed up to go to a Christian Conference in Branson, MO in April.
The Sunday morning worship service is beginning to take shape. I’ve been praying about the methods God wants me to use and waiting on His timing. I’ve become much more patient since I first entered the ministry. I now realize that I have entered into a new culture. I must adjust and meet our people where they are. Only then can I draw them in the direction god desires. A wise country preacher once advised me in saying, “You can’t push a rope. You have to draw it.”
I am thrilled to have our lives planted in this new ministry field. I believe this is the beginning of a great ministry. God’s hand is beginning to move and that is exciting. Please pray for us as we seek to please God as we minister to these sweet people.
Posted by Eric Beechem at 6:20 PM