It really is a privilege to serve God within our network of Baptist churches in the west of England.  For me, this can involve working with individual congregational members, church leadership teams, individual ministers and Cluster groups of ministers. 

One of the groups I have been privileged to work with this year has been the seven people who have engaged in INVEST, our new training initiative run by WEBA with some of our local churches and Dave Kingswood, the Invest Facilitator.

Invest-ers commit to work one day per week in their local church; to being mentored; to receive input and training on a quarterly basis; and to engage in a bespoke process of reading and training designed to help them to develop their discipleship and leadership capacity. 

This year, has largely been one of positive transformation and growth. One of the Invest-ers, Claire writes: ‘The word God gave me at the beginning of the year is ‘abundant’ and this just keeps speaking to me! It takes me back to the start of Invest where my desire was to be more of God and less of me. God’s supply never runs dry and meets all of our needs, daily.  I feel that I am learning so much but the challenge now is to put some of that in to practice and make this a new flow of my life.’

A resource like Invest doesn’t just happen automatically, it requires programme planning, face-to-face conversations, time spent in prayerful reflection, and on-going mentoring and coaching.  It is your giving to Home Mission that has made this resource possible in 2019 and your continued giving will enable it to develop into 2020 and beyond, by God’s grace. 

Our WEBA Home Mission Grants Awards Group (made up of several WEBA ministers throughout our association) awarded a Special Ministry (Resourcing & Enabling) Grant last year so that Invest could be developed and rolled out this year.  Your giving made this possible in 2019, and at this point we have eleven people who have signed up for Invest in 2020.  That is eleven people who will be mentored and nurtured, who will learn how to serve more effectively as disciples of Jesus – people whom your giving has blessed in tangible ways.

Thank you once again for your partnership in the mission of God through your giving and your faithful prayers.  May God bless you and yours during this season of Advent.  May the presence, peace, hope and joy of our Saviour dwell with you and shape your circumstances this Advent and beyond that into 2020.