We say around Buckhead Church that life is better connected, but don’t take our word for it. Over the next couple weeks, we’ll share stories from those in our church who have learned that first hand.
“Three kids in three different schools—elementary, middle, and high school. Two parents working, one full-time and one part-time. Volunteer commitments. Sports. Music. Social events. Life is full and we are blessed. Based on the above, there is just no time for any other commitment. Maybe in a couple of years when the kids are older . . .”
While we felt the pull to lead a group, we spent over a year resisting it because of our schedules—until the day we decided we just needed to do it. Maybe it was a call from Andy during a sermon or the realization that just going to church wasn’t enough for us. Our kids were getting so much out of their small group experiences, maybe it was time for us to mimic their behavior.
Fast-forward two years: We look forward to every Tuesday night and have built strong friendships with our group members. Most have children, ranging in age from 6 months to 18 years. The church has supported us with ideas for studies, and each couple has taken a turn choosing a study and leading the group. The life experiences represented in the group have provided very helpful discussions on a wide range of topics. Our kids help set up, but most important, they like that we are engaged in a group, seeking the will of the Lord, every Tuesday night.
David and Carol Shutley ::: Community Group Leaders ::: Buckhead Church
You can learn more about GroupLink and pre-register at www.buckheadchurch.org/grouplink.
Men’s GroupLink: Thursday, August 22
Women’s GroupLink: Friday, August 23
Married Couples’ GroupLink: Saturday, August 24
We love to hear stories of the impact our volunteers make both inside and outside of our church. Jen’s story below is one incredible example.
For me, the first day back after a mission trip is challenging. I’m tired, my heart is in another country, and I often have thoughts like, Is my work really meaningful? My mind was reeling my first day back to work after leading a group of college students to Haiti. Reality hit when I received a call from the assistant to the CEO of my company saying the CEO would like to speak with me. Now, I work for a large company, so it’s not every day—well, it’s never—that I receive a phone call from the CEO or even his assistant.
Over the phone, the CEO told me that he selected me to receive the CEO Award! In a company with over 5,000 employees, this award is a big deal. It’s given to an employee who is nominated by her peers, endorsed by her leadership team, and then selected by the CEO. The winner is someone who embraces our company values: valuing people and allowing their voices to be heard.
I was overwhelmed with joy and just couldn’t believe it! He talked to me about some work-related things he felt demonstrated going above and beyond the normal job expectations. Then, he began to tell me how my teammates and others in the company had recognized the activities I am a part of outside of my company. He mentioned my mission trips to Haiti and how I lead middle school girls in Transit. Later, I was able to see the emails from my peers supporting my nomination. I was so humbled to read how my service outside of my company had as big an impact on them as my work for the company.
I think about all the times we hear about volunteering on Sundays and how God calls us to love and serve one another. But I also think about how he can and will do so much more with our obedient acts of service. I’ve learned so many life and leadership lessons by leading small groups, hanging out with middle school girls, and going on mission trips. I’ve learned that leadership is not about a title; it’s about influence.
I can clearly see that because I decided to get involved at church, I have grown in my ability to demonstrate integrity and influence in the workplace. This can be such a powerful example to my co-workers of what it means to be a follower of Jesus. All the while, I get to do what I love doing most—serving. I’m so glad I did!
Jen Allen ::: Volunteer ::: Buckhead Church
Learn more about getting involved at Buckhead Church here.
On Sunday, July 14, Buckhead Church will host a Food Drive benefiting our Intersect Partner, Buckhead Christian Ministry (BCM). The excerpt below explains why summer is so critical for families in need.
What does summer mean to you? For me, as a child, it was early morning swim practices, family trips to faraway places, camp, time with friends, and freedom. I was blessed; summer was a gift.
As a teen, I was a counselor for middle school students in a downtown housing project. For four summers I shared the gift of summer with a group of boys. We were at camp during the week, and on weekends I would drive them to faraway places to bake cookies, swim in the lake, and eat. They would beg for the buffet at the Golden Corral. We would pile into my car and head for a distant strip mall where they would eat and eat and, you guessed it, eat.
Now I work for a nonprofit with a food pantry, and I am no longer that naïve girl driving to the suburbs for yeast rolls and roast beef. Now I know that it wasn’t just a special treat. Now I know that “my” boys were hungry. In Georgia, more than 700,000 children are food insecure (Feeding America), meaning their access to adequate food is limited by a lack of money and other resources. In Atlanta Public Schools, 75 percent of students receive a free or reduced-price lunch (Georgia Department of Education).
For these families, summer is not a gift; it is a daily struggle to provide, complicated by the extra expenses of childcare, transportation, and more meals to put on the table. Summer is the great divide, when givers are distracted by the magic of these 76 days, and donations to Buckhead Christian Ministry’s food pantry are down. But families in need are struggling simply to keep afloat; they need BCM’s food pantry to survive the summer.
What does summer mean to you? I hope it means lifelong memories and as many meals as you can eat. And, I hope that as you and your family enjoy the gift of summer, you will give a little bit of it away by donating to the food pantry at BCM.
Dudley Franklin ::: Development Director ::: Buckhead Christian Ministry
You can help by bringing food on July 14 to Buckhead Church. Visit buckheadchurch.org/fooddrive to learn how to participate.
In celebration of Independence Day, we wanted to share Sunday’s patriotic opener from Atlanta-based trio, Immeasurable.
We are incredibly grateful to all who fight for our freedom, past, present and future.
Thanks for an incredible Night of Worship last Thursday night! We loved lifting one voice in worship with you! Here is our set list of songs from the night and where you can find them on iTunes.
Relentless • Hillsong United
Furious • Written by Jeremy Riddle
The Lord Our God • Kristian Stanfill
Cornerstone • Hillsong United
Revelation Song • Written by Jennie Lee Riddle
Scandal of Grace • Hillsong United
How Deep the Father’s Love • Written by Stuart Townend
10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord) • Written by Matt Redman
No One Higher • Written by Seth Condrey
Whom Shall I Fear (God of Angel Armies) • Written by Chris Tomlin
God is for Us • Written by Mark and Clarissa Gibson
You Have Won Me • Bethel Music
See ya at our next Night of Worship on Thursday, August 15, at 7:30 p.m.