Milestones at Bay Area First Baptist Church

On Monday, June 1st, I had the opportunity to talk with Josh Allen, Executive Pastor and Brian Haynes, Lead Pastor of Bay Area First Baptist Church in Houston, Texas.  Many of you might be familiar with Brian Haynes as he is the author of The Legacy Path. We give out this book to parents during our parent/child dedication at Hesston MB Church.

I was interested in how the milestones are being implemented in Haynes' new church. In addition, I had questions about curriculum and how milestones strategy affects children's ministry.

Here are thoughts from my two conversations:
  • Vision drives specific ministries.  I know this, but it was repeated by both Josh and Brian. Everything they do in children, youth or adult ministry is determined by their vision which is "Bay Area exists to glorify God by making disciples, equipping families, and serving the world with the Gospel of Jesus Christ."
  • Brian shared that is important to recognize "how" we share our vision.  In our desire to disciple and equip others, we can crush or put unnecessary burdens on people.  He mentioned the importance of abiding (remember my prayer time at beginning of sabbatical) and he agreed on the importance of our identity in Christ.
  • We must be careful to not let family ministry or children's ministry or any other ministry become more important than preaching the gospel. The grace of Christ changes lives. The gospel is good news to unbelievers and believers alike. Just as grace saved us, grace also is necessary for our growth as well.
  • How do we disciple adults? One of the questions we continue to discuss at Hesston MB in our Discipleship Ministries Committee is what is the best way to disciple from birth to death. Is it a program?  Two phrases that Josh mentioned that resonated with me was discipleship must be life on life and organic. This confirms a lot of our discussions over the past few years at HMBC.
  • Finally, Josh Allen has recently graduated from seminary and has written a paper on Milestone 7 (Life in Christ).  His research sounds like it could be very helpful in developing a strategy of discipleship for adults.  Once the paper is available, Josh is going to send it to me and I look forward to reading through what he learned.
I appreciate Josh and Brian taking the time to talk with me while I am on sabbatical.  I hope these thoughts were helpful to you.


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