What I Saw in E-Town

by Philip Jenkins

To God be the glory: this past week around 34 teenagers from the Mt. Juliet church of Christ were doing mission work! Nine were in Honduras, while twenty-five joined the interns and me in Elizabethton, TN.

Here are a couple of thoughts that keep ringing in my ears about Elizabethton.

I saw a hunger for God.

Acts 16:9

And a vision appeared to Paul in the night. A man of Macedonia stood and pleaded with him, saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.”

It’s amazing that there seems to be so many people praying similar words today. It seems like every year we’ll knock on someone’s door that will say something like “I have been praying that God would help me find a church home.”

People have a hunger for God, and many of them just don’t know it yet.

I saw the inexplicable nature of prayer.

Tucker Worley, who is one of our seniors, sat in on a Bible study led by Mitch Poskevich. After the study was over, Tucker was asking him questions and getting pointers from Mitch (we all know how masterful he is at leading Bible studies). Later that day, Tucker told Mike Kibbe “I think I’d like to try to lead a Bible study,” to which Mike replied, “You know what? You set up the study and you can lead it.”

Well, Tucker prayed about it and the very next morning, the first door he knocked on was answered by a woman who told him, “I’m new to the area, and I’ve been looking for a church.”

Tucker set up the Bible study right then, led it, and later that night, Nancy and her son Richie, were baptized into Christ.

Jesus said, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.” (Matthew 7:7-8)