The 10 year anniversary of Midtown Baptist Temple as a church plant is coming up. In these ten years we have watched God do amazing things. Over the years we have seen many lives changed, many disciples made. We have seen many young children grow into adulthood and continue to follow Christ. We have witnessed God grow the congregation to the point where new church plants have happened naturally and with joy.
Deb Molder is a leader in C&YA and the Administrative Assistant to our staff at Midtown Baptist Temple. In this post she talks about how God has worked in her life since coming to MBT.
I started coming to Midtown when it first began as Crosstown Missions— a ministry outreach of Kansas City Baptist Temple—in 2005 on Sunday nights. A member of KCBT, I was discipling a girl named SaDonna Fincher and wanted her to meet some of the group there. From the very beginning we both loved it and continued attending.
About 10 months later KCBT leadership decided it was time to add a Sunday morning service to, Crosstown Missions, and it became KCBT-Midtown (although it was not yet an autonomous church). That was a particularly tough decision because I was employed by KCBT as Jeff Adams’ admin assistant, a part-time biblical counselor, and was helping some of the pastors that ministered with Jeff. After a lot of prayer I decided to go half of the time to KCBT-Midtown and the other half to KCBT; however, after attending the first Sunday morning service of KCBT-Midtown I realized it was exactly where God wanted me to be. I loved it!
About three months after that, Sam needed an admin, so the HR department and leadership of KCBT decided I should be moved to that position. I must admit that I initially wasn’t really excited about the job change. I wasn’t looking for a new job but decided to trust the Lord, hold on, and ride the change out. Looking back I am so thankful for that job change!
About a year later KCBT decided KCBT-Midtown was ready to become an autonomous church. We began working on all the paperwork to make Midtown Baptist Temple legal (tax exemption, 501C3, etc.). They gave Sam three months to put together a board and get ready to be sent out. Two weeks before MBT officially began the new board offered me an office position, which I happily accepted! MBT started officially on Nov 1, 2007.
“Don’t paste my name or face on anything. It doesn’t matter if anyone ever knows any of our names, or even the name of our church. The important thing is to make sure they know God’s name and see His Glory!”
I’m so thankful to be a part of MBT, a church that teaches and believes God has preserved His perfect Word and that we have access to it! A church clothed in simplicity where the blood of Jesus Christ is our foundation. Where making disciples through prayer and worship is the work.
From the very start of MBT Sam began sharing the vision God gave him, about creating a network of likeminded churches believing in the preserved Word of God, working together to make and send out disciplers! He said, “Don’t paste my name or face on anything. It doesn’t matter if anyone ever knows any of our names, or even the name of our church. The important thing is to make sure they know God’s name and see His Glory!” That principle has saturated most everything that goes on at MBT.
In writing this testimony, tears well up thinking back over the years, some from joy and some from sorrow. When we started, there was one high school student, three junior highers, no college-aged young adults, and kidtown was held in the small conference room (now Sam’s office). We were just a small, “called out” group of nobodies, desperately seeking and depending on Jesus.
We quickly became family with many special memories such as: moving main services from the basement to the sanctuary, beginning C&YA in a tiny room, starting the Student Ministry, work days, potluck Sundays, the huge garage sale, going out every Saturday to pass out invitations, parties to pray in the New Year, all-church retreats, our first Mission Focus with a handful of attendees, Community LINC outreach ministry, our first few missions trips going to El Salvador, and on and on and on....
There were also some very difficult seasons. For instance, just four months after MBT began, we suffered a horrific tragedy: the Lord took one of our precious toddlers home very suddenly and unexpectedly. But through all of it, because of a simple faith in Him and His Word, God has blessed this church and given us much fruit.
It’s also been exciting to see the vision God gave Sam coming to fruition! The Living Faith Bible Institute began about 5 years ago and is currently training hundreds of men and women all over the world! The Living Faith Fellowship came into existence around that time, and it’s been a joy to connect with so many like-minded churches! MBT has also had the privilege to start two Bible-believing churches (one in Lee’s Summit and one in Tampa) and send out several missionaries! I can’t wait to see what the Lord does over the next ten years, should He tarry.
Now, please don’t get me wrong. There is no perfect church. There have been both ups and downs over the last 12 years, but MBT is the perfect church for me, because this is where God has called me. How do I know this? Well, here are the verses that the Lord gave me many, many years ago about what to look for and pray about regarding both my walk and my local church:
1. What He said to the Philadelphian church:
Revelation 3:7-8 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth; I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.
2. What He said to His disciples:
John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
3. What He said to His son Israel:
Deuteronomy 7:7 The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people:
These verses (along with many others) sum up why I love MBT and am so excited about celebrating our 10th birthday. We are a church that recognizes we have just a little strength, but are mighty through Christ. We have kept his word, and have not denied Christ’s name. We have brought forth fruit by abiding in Him, though we are the fewest of all people. Praise the Lord for what he has done, is doing, and will continue to do at MBT!