EP 218 – Grateful for you
Hey Bootcamplers, we’re thankful for each and every one of you! We took a few minutes to pause reflect and share our thanks. Praying you have a blessed gathering time with church family and friends.
Jimbo and Bob
JimBo Stewart: [00:00:00] Here we are back at the boot camp Thanksgiving edition. Bob, I got a question for you. Do you in the Bickford household play Christmas music prior to Thanksgiving or post Thanksgiving?
Bob Bickford: Well, Jimbo, Barb is a Christmas Pharisee, and so that means we cannot do anything Christmassy. Until after Thanksgiving,
like she is letter of the law. She is letter of the law on this. And we were in a store the other day and they were playing some real jazzy Christmas music and she, she was grumbling.
Why are they playing Christmas music? Why are they doing, you know, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. So I’m like, wow. Well, I mean it is about Christmas time, but tell you what, she’s a Christmas Pharisee. So I might play Christmas music before Thanksgiving. But Jimbo for the sanctity and unity of our marriage. And because Ephesians says that we are to submit to one another in love, I do not fire up the Christmas music until after [00:01:00] Thanksgiving.
JimBo Stewart: man, it’s been a hot debate in the Stewart household. Adria is a strong advocate of starting Christmas music immediately after Halloween, Audria is in, like, as soon as trick or treating is done, she is on top of some Christmas carols.
And the kids have been giving her, especially our oldest trip, have been giving her a hard time, about, not playing Christmas music until after Thanksgiving. So it’s been, it’s been a hotly debated item in the Stewart household. but fear not. a day after this podcast episode comes out, play all the Christmas music you want.
I mean, wherever you want.
Bob Bickford: Except for this song, Christmas Shoes, like do not play that song, right? I know there’s a hot discussion every year on the Baptist Review. our good buddy, Kyle Bierman, who seems to be the nexus of all things Baptist y,
he is kind of the capstone, the keystone to all things Baptist y. He and Matt Hensley.
I think he has some hot [00:02:00] sports opinions about the Christmas you song. And I, I’ve felt that way for a long time, even before I knew Kyle, that that’s one Christmas song that along perhaps with grandma got run over by reindeer, that, that we would be okay to never hear again.
JimBo Stewart: not a grandma got run over by the reindeer fan either.
Bob Bickford: Well, no, I like it, but I mean, again, I think, some people, who maybe have recently lost their grandma are a little sensitive about it. So,
JimBo Stewart: Yeah, I guess maybe so. Well, hey, let’s, here’s the thing, Bob. I think everybody’s probably pretty busy. Cooking and getting ready for Thanksgiving and they’ve probably not even slated a full 25 minutes for the boot camp this week So here’s what I think we ought to do just real quick and fast What is something I want to ask you two questions one?
What are what are something or some things that you’re really grateful for? right now in your life and your ministry. [00:03:00] And then two, what do you see as the benefit and importance for pastors of keeping a grateful mindset?
Bob Bickford: great question. I love that. So good. Um, I mean, I am grateful Jimbo, with my new role at three on three, one of our locations is housed in the former Eastland Baptist church, which was a church in a 56, 000 square foot building on Gallatin Pike. In East Nashville at 25 people and not much hope.
And so about seven, eight years ago, I went and did a consultation there and Jimbo. I met with the pastor this last week and they had now have a close to 200 people that are attending on a regular basis. They’re baptizing people. They’ve got a significant recovery ministry. I mean, it’s just amazing to see what God has done in the years since.
I first met Eastland Baptist Church. And so I’m thankful for the [00:04:00] opportunity to see that, to see. That a church from the early process of thinking about renewal, making the courageous steps to become a renewed congregation and then endeavoring to do faithful ministry over a long period of time that God has blessed that.
So I’m thankful that every day that I get to walk in that building, I’m struck with the reality that what, I used to be doing on a regular basis with the replant team to work for church renewal still, and still doing in some ways, I’m thankful for that, for that work, That God has done something significant through that and that I, I get to see, I get to see it in a different way.
Right. You and I speak at a lot of churches and then we walk out and we go, well, I’m not sure what they’re going to do with that. Right. And so this is one where I spoke at a church, we worked with the church, did a deep dive consultation and the Lord’s done some amazing things, on his timetable and I’m just super grateful for it.
JimBo Stewart: That’s a good word. talk about the importance of having a grateful. Heart and a grateful mindset as a pastor.
Bob Bickford: Yeah. [00:05:00] Well, man, I think, it all comes down to our grasp of the gospel. And if we understand that we have been saved from our sin and We have been saved not because of anything that we have done, but it’s all because of what Christ has done for us. man, I, I think it’s, just an amazing and beautiful thing.
and so I think that’s really good.
JimBo Stewart: All right. So some things I am grateful for in my ministry right now. one is, so on the local church level, our church, Mandarin Baptist church in a Mandarin community of Jacksonville. not Mandarin as in speaking Chinese, but Mandarin is in the community. did our night of thanks, recently where we celebrate, it’s kind of our big.
family business meeting, family meeting at the end of the year. And, we talked about, all the things that God has done. And it’s just really neat to see, uh, the pastor was showing some things of like, 19 countries that have been impacted by the ministries of Mandarin over the last year. we’ve had, about this, [00:06:00] about that many people join the church.
over the last year and 12 out of the last 19, uh, out of those 19 are already serving. there was a pretty large amount of baptisms that were listed up there. over the last year and some cool mission stuff happening. We planted a Ukrainian church over the last year. and so there’s just so many things that it was neat to see in our church and our association. Man, First Coast Churches has been great. It’s been such a blessing to be a part of. we just had the smoothest replant, adoption I’ve ever seen in my life between a, African American church plant. And a, dying Anglo church in a community that is no longer an Anglo community. And so, this church plant has adopted this church and man, it just, it really went without any major bumps in the road for that to happen on the NAM level of ministry, in the new role as associate director, I just feel incredibly blessed to get to lead the team that we have.
kind of the new [00:07:00] initiatives that they’re accomplishing and things that they’re getting done and just getting to be a part of that, getting to help them figure out, what to do. And then on the family level, man, we’re in a cool season as the kids are super involved in a, theatrical production called Christmas Carol.
All three of them are in it. That’s going to be great. I can’t wait to see it next month. And I’ve even got some family coming down to see it. So, boot campers, here’s the thing. this is a short episode this week. We want to just want to give you your time and, pray that you have a grateful heart, pray that you enjoy the time you get with your family and your church family and your friends, as you celebrate this week and.
You know, Philippians chapter two says, do all things without grumbling and complaining or grumbling and disputing. And, you know, it’s such a low bar that that even gives us that it is, refreshingly odd when we are not complainers. And so, give thanks and all things.