On Sunday, November 17, our church overwhelmingly affirmed Vision 2020! See below for updates!
Thank you for your questions and comments on our vision; our Vision Team has read through all of those, evaluated them, and is in the process of responding where necessary. Most of those responses will be handled individually.
Two questions/comments were brought up by several, so we want to address those to the entire body.
1) What about a gym for sports activities, for student activities, for church recreational events?
We are planning to build a building large enough to accommodate these needs. We are not going to the expense of building a fully outfitted gym, but we are going to build a space that is large enough for gym use and for gatherings of several hundred at the Raymar property.
2) I am concerned about spending too much on us, upgrading the sanctuary and lobby spaces.
The Vision Team and I are both very grateful for the heart of our people to make our ministry more about others. Perhaps in our vision statement it would have been better to use the word “maintenance” rather than the word “enhance.” We are going to get quotes on the basics like replacing the worn carpeting and repainting walls. We are not going to make major changes to the Sanctuary, just cosmetic. That being said, the cost of the maintenance will determine if we proceed or not. When it comes to priorities, our expansion to reach new people will be our first objective. Funds spent on our buildings will be limited to necessity and may be delayed depending on cost and availability of funds.
At this time, we are putting together teams to plan and determine cost projections on each component of our vision. We will not proceed with the Raymar expansion or Sanctuary improvements until you have seen the plans and costs and have opportunity to vote. Committees will gather and prepare information to present; all of the body will have the opportunity to participate in any decision to move forward.
Thank you again for your strong affirmation; continue to pray for the Lord’s clear direction.
Having a thriving church requires a vision to know where you are going and a plan on how to get there. In 2018, I gathered a group of men and women of different backgrounds and ages to come alongside me in the journey to understand God’s future vision for our church. This Vision Team prepared to hear from God by completing the Experiencing God Bible study together. After several months of preparation, our team began to pray and meet, seeking out God’s will for Geyer Springs. We have come to believe God has given us a vision that both celebrates our legacy and embodies our mission to Live, Love, and Reach. It is a vision for us, a vision for our community, and a vision for the future. We feel confident God is calling us to Vision 2020: Expand, Enhance, and Engage.
During our time seeking God for His Vision for Geyer Springs, it became very clear He does not intend for our ministries to be fully contained at our main campus. The Vision Team believes that God has graciously provided the Raymar property to us for the purpose of furthering the influence of the gospel-centered ministries of our church. Upward sports and other events have created a forum for engaging the community in the vicinity of Raymar; however, we have not been effective in connecting that engagement to the ministries of our main campus. We believe God is calling our church to begin to cultivate the great potential of this property by expanding our gospel-centered ministries to have a permanent, ongoing
presence at Raymar in order to engage further the community and meet needs that we might not otherwise be able to meet from our main campus. [Acts 11:19-21; Jeremiah 29:7]
Build a multi-purpose Geyer Springs ministry facility at the Raymar Road property that will reach the unchurched and unengaged. This facility will serve as a second Geyer Springs campus that is focused on serving the community in the vicinity of Bryant.
Utilize the Raymar Road property and facilities to engage and serve the community by meeting spiritual, physical, and social needs. This could include expanding our recreation and sports outreach opportunities by providing more recreation options, opening the facility to host civic meetings, or even provide space for after school care or support meetings.
Partner with the Arkansas Baptist State Convention and local Baptist associations in the use of the Raymar property and facilities to foster and facilitate church planting endeavors.
God has blessed Geyer Springs First Baptist Church tremendously in the facilities He has provided at our main campus. These outstanding facilities not only support vital discipleship opportunities on Sundays and Wednesdays but also provide opportunities to serve our community through the hosting of various events that bring thousands onto our campus every year. These facilities and the ministries that they support are essential to the Vision that God is revealing to us. For these reasons, the Vision Team believes an emphasis should be placed on maintaining these facilities in a manner that will allow them to continue to be a welcoming and relevant environment for gospel-centered community for years to come. We believe enhancing our Main Lobby, Worship Center, Venue, and coffee shop areas will help us accomplish these goals. [Acts 2:46-47]
Update/refresh the Worship Center and Main Lobby areas. This could include new paint, floors, stain, and furniture.
Improve community gathering spaces for both services. This could include moving Shepherd’s Corner to the main floor, providing an open lobby area for the Venue, and a better overall usage of our space to foster relationships.
Demonstrate a passion for our community by enhancing and updating our current environment.
Throughout our time studying Experiencing God together, a common theme of our conversation was to engage where God is at work. We believe God is at work not only where we are now but also across our cities, state, nation, and world. We also believe God works through His church to further His Kingdom. It is for these reasons we emphasize in the Vision a commitment to continue to engage with church planting ministries locally, nationally, and internationally for the furtherance of His Kingdom through the spreading of His gospel. This emphasis not only allows us as a congregation to participate in Kingdom work around the world but also provides a medium by which we can be challenged to keep the gospel at the forefront of all we do and of who we are. [Acts 11:22-30; Matthew 6:33]
Communicate and celebrate the many missional opportunities God has connected us to locally, nationally, and internationally. This could include developing an intentional strategy of connecting every mission partner we serve to the body.
Support local churches and ministries to help revitalize their influence in and service to our community. This may include helping new churches with buildings, ministry events, and even personnel.
Partner financially and relationally with church planting ministries that focus on the unchurched and unengaged of our cities, state, nation, and world. This may include developing a Church Planting Residency Program in affiliation with the Arkansas Baptist State Convention.