The Progress Baptist Church just completed three days of special services we hope will become a regular event in our yearly calendar. On Sunday, we “kicked off” these special services with great preaching from men in our church family. Bro. Allen Morgan, Bro. Larry Raynes, Bro. Justin Quales, and Bro. Breck Landreth preached in the Sunday morning and Sunday evening services, and all four men brought tremendous messages that fed our souls and gave us a greater desire to see God work and move in the special services planned for Monday and Tuesday.
On Monday night, the church family held the ordination service for our pastor, Bro. Doug Raynes. Pastor’s father, Larry Raynes, preached his charge, and Pastor James Jones, from Harriman, TN, brought the charge to the church family. Both men preached in the power of the Holy Spirit, and God honored the service with His presence. A special blessing to everyone in attendance, was the arrival and participation in the service of the Hispanic congregation God has given our pastor in Lancaster, SC, at Iglesia Bautista El Faro. These dear folks were joined by several Hispanics from the upstate of SC, and God used these fellow believers to minister to everyone who was at the service. After the service, the entire congregation was invited to a reception held in honor of 40 years of faithful ministry by Brother and Sister Larry Raynes. Brother Raynes was ordained on April 4, 1971, and the sweet fellowship and congratulations of all the dear friends who had come to the service were a great blessing to both he and his wife.
Severe storms tore through the area around midnight Monday night, and a small area right around our church lost power. By late afternoon on Tuesday, it was obvious that power would not be restored before service time, so the church family began to round up lanterns for the auditorium. After the song service, Bro. Larry Wells, from Newport, TN, began preaching on Jabez’s prayer recorded in I Chronicles chapter 4. God used the message in a powerful way, and as Brother Wells finished preaching, the altar was filled with folks calling on God. Then, Brother Alfred Willis’ grandsons, along with their cousin, were asked to sing right before Brother Willis came to preach the final message of the meeting. A sweet, sweet, spirit came over the service, and for the next couple of hours, God met with His people in a great and wonderful way! It would be impossible to describe everything God did, but all who know the Lord, knew that He was “at home” on this very special night. The absence of electrical power did not diminish the presence of God’s power, and this was a service folks would long remember!
Wednesday night prayer meeting turned out to be the sweet conclusion to the services that began on Sunday morning. After a message on, “Some Things I Have Learned By Experience,” God’s people once again began to testify to God’s goodness as well as to exhort and encourage one another. The service was concluded with altar prayer as the church thanked God for the rich blessings of the week.