Sharon and I thank you for your ongoing prayer support on our behalf during the ninth year of our ministry with the MARBC. God bestowed to us wisdom and strength to prayerfully deal with the daily rigors of our ministry, the unique challenges of the financial crisis, and the severe physical needs of my parents. We thank Him for His gracious guidance.
This past summer someone asked me to describe my ministry as the Ministry Director of the MARBC. After pondering the best way to illustrate it, here is how I replied:
“Our ministry is much like my relationship with an acquaintance of mine named Sam. I really appreciate Sam and consider him a reliable friend. I know that if I call him he will promptly respond. If I need special attention he is equipped to assist me in determining my needs, discern important issues to address, and will then give me proper treatment or refer me to those who can.
Sam is actually a real person and a brother in Christ who is a member of an MARBC church in the Grand Rapids area. He is also my physician. I often pass by the medical building where Sam works sitting to the west of I-96 when I am traveling into and out of Grand Rapids. I don’t stop by to chat with him and he doesn’t expect me to call him weekly. Yet, I know that when he is needed I can pick up the phone, call him, and receive immediate attention. Sam’s almost instant availability and professional expertise make it worth the personal and financial investment that I make to maintain a relationship with him. Bottom line: I value Sam enough to trust my physical well being into his care.”
This illustration summarizes the relationship that I share with dozens of churches and ministry servants through out the state of Michigan. I may not hear from some pastors or churches for quite some time. But when they need the spiritual guidance and assistance of the MARBC we are readily available to assist.
When someone asks me, “What is your vision for the MARBC?” my response is that it is both intentional and practical. We are intentional about encouraging the doctrinal integrity and ecclesiastical effectiveness of sister churches in the association. We are intentional in our strategy to assist churches to be salt and light in the Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria’s of Michigan. This intentionality acknowledges that a strong missions thrust to “the ends of the earth” begins with strong, healthy Great Commission churches at home. Dr. Oswald Smith, founding pastor of Peoples Church in Toronto, effectively acknowledged this principle years ago when he observed, “The light that shines farthest shines brightest nearest home.”
Our vision is also practically based. Every Sunday we are in a different church sharing a variety of speaking and ministry resources, depending upon the situation. We recognize that much of the MARBC ministry assistance, like local church ministry, is not glamorous nor headline grabbing. My vision and calling as ministry director is to be available as a Barnabas to pastors and ministry servants. Every week our ministry includes phone calls and personal contacts with discouraged and struggling pastors or church leaders. We invest many hours and miles on the road to meet with churches needing assistance with proactive strategy, crisis intervention, pastoral search assistance, and practical resources. We also help churches with their practical needs, such as church ministry and facility assistance.”
It is hard to believe that with the submission of this report that we have now completed our ninth year of service with the MARBC. After logging roughly 400,000 miles and serving over 600 churches, we can truly say that our love, burden, and commitment for our churches and ministry servants continue to steadily increase. The MARBC Council of 16 is a source of great wisdom and support to us in this partnership and we thank them for their sacrificial service.
Our special gratitude is extended to two significant volunteers of the MARBC’s practical ministry: Karen Avey, who serves as MARBC bookkeeper, and Kevin Pierpont, MARBC web master. Their quality work and humble service are a great blessing.
Thank you for your prayer support and notes of encouragement to my parents. They recently moved into a retirement apartment following dad’s lengthy recovery from major cancer surgery. We praise God for His work in the lives of our daughter and son-in-law, Allison and Taylor, and our three grandchildren – Connor (6), Eloise (4), and Malachi (1). I (Ken) give praise to God for Sharon. She is a godly woman, faithful servant of God, consistent prayer warrior, trusted confidant, and great travel companion. Finally, permit us to thank you for your support and investment with us in this significant ministry. We look forward to many opportunities to bring God glory as church partners in the coming year.
We are blessed to complete our ninth year serving with you as representatives of this Biblically sound and viable church network. We thank God for each of you!
Partnering with you and praying for you,
Ken and Sharon Floyd
Statistics from 2014-15 …
• Travel: 24,558 miles on behalf of the MARBC this past year; roughly 400,000 miles in 9 years, serving in over 600 churches
• Church assistance: Speaking 83 times in 43 churches; 109 meetings in-person and online for counseling and consulting; CPR ministry opportunities, including the urgent response to the needs of First Baptist Church in Portland following the devastating tornado in June
• Pastoral assistance: Assisted 16 churches in the call of a new pastor; conducted 21 pastoral search orientations; interviews with dozens of pastoral prospects and pastor-less churches; spoke at 6 pastor installation services; moderated 7 ordination councils
• Strategic planning: led 5 churches through strategic planning seminars; worked with church planters and churches in 5 Michigan settings re: church planting or “re-boots”; participated in 8 church planting strategy sessions involving several North American church planters and agencies
• Office: monitored budget situation; led financial crisis effort and communications; prepared 4 dozen MARBC Messenger communications; worked on improving electronic presence through further web-utilization.