Monday, November 17, 2008

Words of Reflection and Gratitude

Well, I must admit, the 5Th Year Pastoral Anniversary Celebration held in honor of my family and I on Sunday was second to none. The wonderful people of GSJ left no stone unturned as countless expressions of gratitude fell from their lips and many tangible gifts were given to demonstrate their appreciation. It’s always good to sit down and allow others to share reflections of your labor of love throughout the year. Pastors are so busy serving their congregations until it’s often difficult to remember everything we do. Thank God for people of faith who don’t mind bringing our labor back into focus as they praise God for His awesome providence.

We were blessed with the presence of several pastors and their congregations who shared with us in worship all day. Pastor H. Gregory Haygood of Pilgrim, South Bend, preached a message during 8am worship entitled,” When Your Faith Is on the Ropes” taken from Matthew 11:2-6. We were encouraged through the message to not allow our crisis to cause us to lose focus on Christ. Pastor Haygood is a premiere preacher who has been a big brother to me ever since my days at American Baptist College of A. B. T. Seminary in Nashville Tenn. He was instrumental in my becoming acquainted with GSJ and I truly thank him for his friendship.

Pastor Charles L. Emery, my father in the ministry and pastor of Pilgrim, Gary, Indiana, brought the message during our 11am worship. We had a hallelujah good time! There was not a dry eye or immobile person in the place. In everyday preacher jargon, he dumped the house. The message he shared came from John 21:15-17, entitled “The Shepherds Love for the Sheep.” I thank God for my pastor and what he has meant to me through the years. After 11am worship, we dined sufficiently in the lower level of our church where the culinary staff did not disappoint. The food was simply delicious. Were it not for one more service, I could have gone to sleep. You know how drowsy we get after a sumptuous meal.

At 5pm, our services continued with Pastor Ray E. Owens & Macedonia Baptist Church along with Pastor Keith D. Witherspoon & Bethlehem Baptist Church as our guests. Something special happened to me during this service. Our youngest child, Jared (9yrs.old) favored me with a surprise tribute that left me with tears of joy. When they asked for the person with the special tribute to come forward, the church went in with excitement as he mounted the podium. His tribute was confirmation I desperately needed because I never want to become too busy as a pastor that I fail at being a family man. Thank God I’m not failing in this area of my life.

The services concluded with Pastor Keith D. Witherspoon preaching like a man possessed. He came through like a rushing mighty wind. He is sho-nuff some preacher. The house had already been dumped before he arrived but one more dumping has never hurt anybody. The message he preached was entitled “The Gospel” taken from Romans 1:16. My brother preached my soul happy and I am yet to recuperate.

This day will go down as one of the most rewarding, refreshing and richest days I have ever experienced. I owe deep gratitude to the GSJ family in general and the Anniversary Committee in particular. You guys have certainly out done yourselves and I am so thankful to be your pastor. Let’s stay together for as long as God will allow. Love Ya!!!


Pastor Lance A. Mann said...

McGhee I bless God for your time at GSJ, I know they know how blessed they are to have you as their Pastor.

The problem is how can you have Charles Emory and Keith Witherspoon preach the same Sunday. That's a very dangerous compilation, especially if you want to have walls and pews left standing after worship.

God be praised!


Keith D. Witherspoon said...

As always I am grateful for the freindship and fellowship that we share.

We had a wonderful time in worship, and I thank you for the opportunity.

GSJ serves as a beacon light to this community on how to treat their pastor.

May God continue to bless both the pastor and the pew!!

Ronald said...

Doctor McGhee, God is raising you up as a standard bearer in Christianity and I’m glad to call you friend. I’m grateful to have met you along with the other brothers that closely follow you. God truly put you and our fellow blogging brothers in my life at a crucial time; though I watch and read from afar, I don’t feel so alone knowing that God has men like you out there fighting the good fight.

May God continue to give you grace,

Fitts said...

McGhee, I am truly humbled by what God is doing through you and your ministry, you are some kind of preacher.

As I stated before, the world is yet to see what God has in store for Pastor A.A McGhee!

God bless you bro,


Reginald C. Payne said...

Sounded like a great day and we will continue to pray for you as you head into thisnext year of ministry.

Numbers 6:24

Anonymous said...

Wow McGhee, wish I could have been there to experience such a rich worshipping experience. Congratulations on 5 years of Pastoral ministry. We rejoice with you in all of the wonderful things He is doing in your life and ministry.

Stay at the wheel my brother.

Be Encouraged.

Tony R.

Anonymous said...

Pastor McGhee,
God is writing a book about you, The pages tell of your life and the lives you were created to touch. No one else will take exactly the same path as you, meet the same people, or have a chance to show the love of God in the same way. You are unique and so is your story. Thank you Pastor for allowing God to use you as His choosen vessel. Psalm 139:

Yours in Christ

Anonymous said...

Pastor, we are so grateful for your presence at GSJ. Early on in the planning stages of the Anniversary Committee our Chairman stated his expectation “I want this to be the GREATEST celebration the Pastor has ever had”, so we all agreed and gave 150%. We were so glad you enjoyed the special day. Your fellow Pastor’s really made the day extra special. We (Jean & I) can not wait to visit Macedonia and Bethlehem MB Churches. It was very rewarding to see the relationship you 3 Pastor’s share. And your Father, Pastor Emery, wow, he is truly .. I am lost for words…. What a man, what a Preacher, What a Pastor. I thought about Sunday’s celebration all day Monday. Jarrett, First Lady so many smiles, I was very glad I was part of the whole day.

My mother calls me every Sunday and asks how was church. This Sunday she was surprised because we got home so late. When I told her we were at church from 7:30 am to after 8:00 pm she thought we would be tired. But we were both so energized when we got home. The spirit within the walls of the sanctuary was so strong we never wanted to leave. That was one day we wished could have lasted longer, especially when we get to serve our Pastor.

Thanks for leading and teaching us at Greater St. John Pastor and may the Lord continue to bless you and your family.

Brother Armstrong



Congratulations again on your 5Th Year Pastoral Anniversary Celebration.

I could feel the excitement building in the air and that day exceeded all of my expectations and much more, my hat off to the committee.

We as a body of believers are truly blessed to have you as our Pastor/Teacher, GOD is smiling on us.

The physical food was superb, but the spiritual food was magnificent.

GOD Bless~~~

Rev. Barney said...

From the depth of My heart I am a better person, preacher and pastor for having you in our district and as a brother in this commuity.

I want to tak this time to say to you and your family congrats!! My mother-in-law and my brother-in-law speak very very highly of you.

Stay on the wall, continue to stand tall and most of all continue to serve the Lord with gladness!!!!

Anonymous said...

Pastor McGhee,

You are such a true man of God. I thank God every day that you have been placed to lead us at GSJ. The Anniversary celebration was very special and one dear to me because last year I missed the celebration but I had dinner with my Dad. It was the last time he visited my house. As you know I have had a very challenging year but I am glad to have you and Jennifer in my life.Please continue to pray for me.

Your Faithful Member
Doranna Byrd

Clinton Smith said...

Happy Anniversary and what preacing power houses you had attending the celebration. Charles Emory, WOW!

Anonymous said...


To God be the Glory for what He has done!

I hope Sunday was everything you & Sis. McGhee anticipated it to be. I truly was blessed by the spoken word from all the Pastors. Also, you are a true example of fatherhood. May the love of God continue to shine on you and your family.

P.S. GSJ church family is truly blessed by your presence. Thank you for all you do for your sheep.

Vietta P's two cents said...

Happy 5th Anniversary. Sounds as though there was a grand Jubilee in your honor. Certainly it was special to have your father in ministry present. I know the tribute from your son was extra special. You deserve this and more for your labor in the gospel ministry.

Sounds like a whole lot of dumping going on in that place on Sunday. Would have loved to hear my son Pastor Mann preach. Who knows, maybe I will get the chance to hear each one of you. Take care and be blessed.


Anonymous said...

Okay Hubby. You say I never comment on your blog, but I do read it always. I just want to reiterate what I said to you on Sunday. This year you have shown me more than ever, what a true man of God really is. I, more than anyone, know how much you pour into this ministry daily. I was so honored to share this year's appreciation with you, and I look forward to many more years as we work together in Christian service.

Lovingly yours,