LIVING WHOLEHEARTED MEANS LIVING ON MISSION.
As a church, our mission is to make wholehearted followers of Christ, and living wholehearted means living on mission. To follow Christ means to follow His command - to make disciples of all nations, including ours. This starts here as we LIVE intentionally in the places God already has us - our neighborhoods, workplaces, schools and communities. We make disciples here that will be disciple-makers wherever they go.
But, it doesn't end here. We also GO and SEND to the nations, partner with local churches where they exist, or establish new churches where none exist all for the ultimate purpose of spreading the Gospel of Christ and making disciples of all nations for the glory of our great God.
We do NOT ask, "Am I called to missions?" because to follow Christ is to be on mission.
We DO ask, "How has God wired and gifted me? What skills, talents and opportunities has He given me that I can leverage strategically for His mission?"
And then, we lay it all on the table. Have you done that? Have you laid down your comforts, your future, plans, finances, time, preferences, your family and friends? Have you held them out before God and said: "I will go anywhere and do anything, anytime. If You send me, I will go."
Whether God leads you to stay or to go, to move across counties or continents, to cross the street or the ocean, we want to see you praying, giving, going and sending strategically on the mission of God, in our city and around the world.
SHORT AND MID TERM MISSION
All of us can and should go short or mid-term to encourage and invest in those that have gone long-term.
Going short and mid-term is an active way to be a sending church, to care and serve our long-term partners on the field.
Going short and mid-term is an intentional way to be open to the possibility that you may be called to go long-term.
Going short and mid-term is the best way to gain perspective on the realities of the world and to grasp the glory of our global God.
Going short and mid-term is a way to mobilize the church to live on mission wherever God calls.
LONG TERM MISSION
Some of us are called to GO to the nations long-term (2+ years), to give our lives for the spread of the gospel in a foreign land. Maybe you feel like God is calling you, but you aren't sure what that even means (or you know what it means, and you're wrestling with that reality); maybe you know He has called you and you are ready to take the next step, whatever that is; maybe you are already well on your way to the nations, you know where you are going and you can't wait to get there.
Wherever you are on the spectrum, we would love to pray for you, walk alongside you and potentially partner with you as you go. Let us help send you in a manner worthy of God.
"And how are they to preach unless they are sent?"
The good news of the gospel is clear in Romans 10:13, that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. But this is only good news for those who hear it, and thus Paul asks the question in the following verses,
"How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent?"
One of the greatest roles our church plays in God's mission is to send people out! And we don't just send them out, we partner with them as they help to plant churches and make disciples among every nation.
A big part of being a good "sending church" is caring well for the missionaries we send out. We want to be an encouragement and a help as we work alongside our missionary partners to fulfill the Great Commission together. To accomplish this we have set up Barnabas Groups for each of our global disciple-making partners.
Beloved, it is a faithful thing you do in all your efforts for these brothers...You will do well to send them on their journey in a manner worthy of God. For they have gone out for the sake of the name...Therefore we ought to support people like these, that we may be fellow workers for the truth.
— 3 John 1:5-8
MISSIONS STARTS HERE.
We believe we are called as individuals and families to live "on mission" wherever we work, play, eat and live. We do this as a local church by being an intentional presence in the community and by partnering with other churches and established ministries.
HERE'S A LIST OF OUR PARTNERSHIPS
+ LIFE AND HEALTH
Athens Pregnancy Center - Gospel centered help and counseling for women in crisis pregnancy situations
Bethel Haven - Christian center providing help, hope and healing to distressed children, individuals and families through professional therapeutic services
Mercy Health Center - providing physical, emotional, and spiritual care for our low-income uninsured neighbors in the Athens area
The Great Exchange - Engaging people one-on-one with surveys about their spiritual background and their understanding of God, Jesus, and Christianity. Mainly on college campuses around the US and the globe.
+ FOOD AND SHELTER
A.C.T.S. Food Bank - enabling churches to partner together to provide material and emotional support for those people with needs in our community
Sparrow's Nest - supporting the poor and homeless community of Athens in a number of ways.
+ FOSTER CARE AND ADOPTION
Division of Family and Children Services (DFCS) - government system through which we can provide temporary homes, love and care to children trapped in the foster system.
Baptist Children's Home - ministry of services designed to promote the spiritual, physical and emotional well-being of children from hard places
Chosen for Life Ministries - educating and engaging the people of our local churches and communities on ways they can live in obedience to God's command to visit orphans in their affliction in our neighborhood and around the world
+ INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY
International Friends - free English classes offered at Beech Haven Baptist Church, with opportunities to make friends and share truth with the International Community that is living right here in Athens. Teachers, drivers and nursery workers needed regularly. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more
+ EDUCATION AND MENTORING
Downtown Ministries - building consistent relationships with youth and their families in inner-city Athens through programs that demonstrate Christ-centered hope and encouragement
Downtown Academy - providing children of inner-city Athens an excellent and rigorous Christ-centered education that builds knowledge, character, and purpose
+ CHURCH PLANT PARTNERS
Calvary Bible Church - planted in Fall 2012 in partnership with Watkinsville First Baptist; located strategically on South Milledge, right off the loop, in the middle of the International community of Athens
Living Hope Church - planted in Summer 2013 in partnership with Watkinsville First Baptist; located on Lexington Rd. in Athens, near the loop
North Avenue Church - platned in Spring 2016 in partnership with Watkinsville First Baptist; currently meeting at 720 Danielsville Rd. in Athens.
+ MINISTRIES HELPING CHURCHES
Missionary Care Ministry - partnering in reaching the lost for Jesus Christ throughout the world by providing a guesthouse for missionaries, aiding in their need for rest and refreshment so they are physically, spiritually, and emotionally better able to minister to the needs of others
Sarepta - assisting churches in Clarke, Jackson, Madison, Oconee and Oglethorpe Counties in fulfilling the Great Commandment and the Great Commission, through strategic support for: Worship, Fellowship, Discipleship, Evangelism, and Ministry/Missions.
MISSIONS STARTS HERE.
Our church is heavily involved with foster care and adoption. Here is how you can be involved:
for children to fInd families; for healthy attachment in families; for the future of the (un)adopted child (unadopted.org); for the gospel to be spread through the means of orphan care
for the orphan - become a CASA (gacasa.org); promote right legislation locally and globally; encourage others to be involved in caring
your resources in a refection of the gospel by helping Watkinsville families with the cost of adoption (watkinsville.org/lifesong)
a child, domestically or internationally (email Joel@watkinsville.org to start that conversation)
across the street and across the globe to reach and care for the least of these. We are involved with projects both here and globally. Check back for updates on how you can get involved.
Here are our partners: