The Word Has It
Ken Floyd, MARBC State Representative
June & July’s Word: “Powerful”
Hebrews 4:12 – “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
The powerful impact of the Word of God in men's lives was the primary emphasis of this year's MARBC Men's Retreat, held on May 3-5 at beautiful Lake Ann Baptist Camp and Retreat Center near Traverse City. Close to 500 men enjoyed wonderful worship, encouraging fellowship, great meals, and beautiful weather. We were blessed to find that for several men in attendance this was their first MARBC retreat.
This year's retreat theme was “Becoming Powerful Men of God.” Retreat speaker Ken Rudolph shared principles from the Gospel of John and the Book of Proverbs that illustrate how men can walk with God with a strengthened faith. Several men responded to the practical challenges shared in the messages. On Friday evening, over 80 men remained after the service concluded for counsel and prayer support.
We give our special thanks to all of the men who served Christ and ministered to us at this year's retreat. Worship sessions were ably led by Pastor Mark Cizauskas and pianist Steve Vandlen of West Cannon Baptist Church in Belmont. Special music was provided by pastors and lay men from MARB churches. Dodd Morris, WCSG Kids Ministry director, gave oversight of the media aspects of the retreat. Order forms for the main session messages are now available on the MARBC website, www.marbc.net. Messages are available in CD and MP3 formats.
A special season of prayer on behalf of our nation was held on Thursday night in recognition of the National Day of Prayer. The men were also encouraged to gather around the pastors and missionaries present at the retreat and commit them to the Lord in prayer. An offering was received on Friday evening to help the MARBC ministry provide encouraging ministry to pastors and churches in the MARBC network. We praise God for the $2,154.02 that was collected and thank the men for their joyful giving.
Attendance trophies were given to churches with the most men attending the retreat. Churches are placed in one of three divisions based upon the average Sunday worship attendance. The following churches were recognized this year:
Division 1 (300+): Emmanuel Baptist Church, Flint, 42 men
Division 2 (150-299): First Baptist Church, Cedar Springs, 16 men
Division 3 (up to 149): First Baptist Church, Portland, 22 men
We extend our great appreciation to Ken Riley, Executive Director of Lake Ann, and his wonderful staff for their tremendous ministry to the MARBC men leading up to and during the retreat. We appreciated the well kept campus, the delicious meals, numerous activities, and special service. You served Christ and us in an exemplary manner. We give thanks for God's continued blessings upon your ministry.
We encourage you to contact us by email with suggestions and input for the planning of future retreats (firstname.lastname@example.org). Be sure to reserve May 1-3, 2008 for next year's MARBC Men's Retreat. Registration forms will be available early next year.
Finally, I would encourage each man who attended the retreat to review the commitments God led him to make during the retreat. Seek out a prayer partner who will hold you accountable and encourage you in your walk with God. God promises to powerfully transform those who will trust Him by applying His truth in their lives. You have His Word on it!