What Are You Thankful For?

The blessings of the Lord are ever present and new every morning. The question is are your eyes open to see them? Sure, it is easy to focus on the obstacles that lie before you and a challenge to turn your eyes to your heavenly Father. But when your perspective shifts from yourself to the Lord your eyes are open to His active hand in your life. 2019 has been a monumental year in the life of our church and we want to share what we are thankful for as we look back. 

The Lord has been performing miracles within our midst all year! We have scene renovations to: three bathrooms, a breezeway, our gym, and our kitchen! Also our Children’s Wing, Youth rooms, and College room have been updated, renovated, and cleaned up! God is truly at work within our facility which we are very thankful because each space helps us better serve our Lord and community!

God continues to open doors for us to better serve our community! As a church we are knee deep in the midst of revitalization and have sought to consolidate within our campus as much as possible. The Lord worked through this process for our church to house a food pantry! God continues to bring ministries to our church to serve along side of us as we seek to reach our community. God is so faithful.

As the pastor of Exchange, I could not be more thankful of our congregation! The faithfulness they embody as we continually step out in faith to follow the Lord is inspiring. The heart of our congregation is to love God and love our neighbor for the glory of God! This is not just a saying but a way of life at Exchange. God is working through our church in remarkable ways and it is fun to look back and see the wake of His mighty hand. What a blessing. What an honor. And what a joy to serve and shepherd this flock of believers. 

-Jon Johnston, Senior Pastor

The definition for thankful is “conscious of benefit received; expressive of thanks; well pleased.”

I am thankful for the people who are called to work in our Children’s Ministry, who love the Lord and who love working with children, and I am thankful for the children He has blessed us to love.  Thank you for the people who love the Lord and want to serve Him by making updates to our Children’s area.

Another area to be thankful about is Whiz Kids. We have two other sites besides ours that meet in our facility. He has provided people who love the Lord and want to help the children learn to read. He has also provided people at each site who minister to the kids by teaching the Bible to the kids each week.  Not only are they receiving help with reading but they are learning about Jesus. We reach over 50 kids each week through this ministry.  

Some days such as today when my computer is not cooperating and I get frustrated, I forget that God has provided me with a job, a computer to use and great people to work with.  Thankfulness is an attitude no matter what our circumstances are. So during this season of Thanksgiving, let’s have an attitude of gratitude and be thankful for everything around us which includes family, friends, coworkers, and everyone that we come in contact with so they can see Jesus in us. It’s much easier to smile than it is to frown and more rewarding to be nice and considerate to others than to be a grouch, even though sometimes that’s exactly what we feel like being.   

May this season of the year remind you of all that you have to be thankful for and that others will see Jesus in you as you interact with them.

-Billie, Children’s Director and Financial Secretary

I am incredibly thankful for the provision of God in our Church and in my life. Throughout 2019, there have been blessings that couldn’t be counted both within our family and within our Church. For our Church, God continues to provide new ways for us to reach our community and unexpected blessings that remind us of His glory. I am thankful for the unique ways God is using our resources for His good. 

In 2019, our student ministry was able to have our room renovated, take leadership students to Super Summer, build community with one another through the launch of a girl’s Bible study, and solidify a core group. It has been an incredibly exciting year in this ministry. The Lord has provided the ability to launch a brand new college-age ministry at Exchange, the Collective, and we have also been fortunate to add members to our musical worship team. These moments in 2019 have displayed God’s character and His passion to see the Church built. 

And personally, I am also incredibly thankful this year that God has blessed me with a wonderful wife. I see God’s faithfulness through her kindness and the example she displays for others. She has been supportive of every step of our work in ministry, even in the launches of new ministries, and continues to be an encouragement to me every day. 

Even the small things in life can be examples of God’s provision. For you, maybe it is your family. Maybe it is the friend of yours who is always there to lift you up when you need it. This year, I pray that we would seek God’s provision, and have faith that He will provide. It might not always be provided in the way we hope or think of, but His provision is perfect. As the season goes by, let us recognize that, praise Him for it, and seek out ways we can bless others in this time of thanksgiving. 

-Preston, Student and Worship Director

Happy Thanksgiving from the staff of Exchange Avenue Baptist Church!

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