What to Expect
We know that visiting a church for the first time can feel a bit overwhelming. This page is designed to give you an idea as to what you will encounter when you come to FBC Lindale. If we could only tell you one thing before you visit, it’s this: we are strongly committed to the Word of God. We believe that the Bible is God’s authoritative message to us today, and we work hard to shape our time together to reflect the standards He has given us.
Our goal in gathering together is that the Word of Christ might dwell in us richly (Colossians 3:16). Every aspect of our services is consciously built on God’s Word. We sing God’s Word, pray in light of God’s Word, read God’s Word publicly, listen to God’s Word preached, and respond to God’s Word. We seek to be relevant, not by following the latest trends, but by bringing the timeless Word of Almighty God to bear on our lives. Because the Bible is so central, we encourage you to bring a copy when you come. If you do not have one, we have pew Bibles available or we would be happy to give you your own personal copy. Our services are generally an hour and fifteen minutes.
There’s nothing on earth more wonderful than a group of people united around God’s Word. We think you’ll sense the joy that this commitment inspires within our congregation, which also fuels our genuine love for our Savior, and our care for other people. We’d love to have you visit on a Sunday. If you’re interested, read on to find out a little bit more about the various aspects of our church gatherings.
When You Visit, You Can Expect
For driving directions to our campus, click here. When you arrive, follow the signs that will direct you to our designated guest parking spaces (we also have available disabled parking). You’ll easily find our main entrance from there. When you enter, you’ll be welcomed by one of our greeters, who will be happy to point you to our welcome desk. Here, we’ll have some information about the church available, as well as a Sunday School guide for our bible studies. Any of our greeters will be happy to answer your questions and guide you where you want to go. If you’d like to get an idea about the layout of our campus before you arrive, you can view it here.
When you make your way to our Worship Center, one of our members will give you a bulletin, which contains our order of worship and announcements about upcoming events. You may also want to pick up a prayer bulletin, which are available at the entrances to the Worship Center. Take a seat in our Worship Center, and a friendly church member nearby will likely greet you. As you interact with our congregation, we think you’ll notice the love for God and each other that marks our fellowship. If you’d like, take a moment to read the Scripture passage for the sermon and pray that God will teach you from His Word during our time together.
Music styles and generational preferences are often the driving force behind a church’s music ministry. At FBC, we focus less on these factors and more on singing the truths that unite us in Christ. You can expect a wide range of musical styles, instrumentations, and ensembles; every week, the music at FBC is a bit different than the week before. To get a full picture of the music we sing, you’ll want to come back several times in close succession. The uniting characteristic of our music is this: we want to make it possible for every generation to sing God’s Word together. We won’t promise that every song we sing will be your favorite, but we encourage you to look deeper than musical preferences to the content of our music – the themes and truths of Scripture. We hope you’ll sing along with our congregation, even if you’re not familiar with every song. For more information on our music ministry, click here.
Throughout our worship service, we’ll pray in several different ways. Each week, we feature a pastoral prayer, where our pastor prays for the specific needs of our congregation, community, and world around us. We also pray in response to the sermon, for our offering, and for other special occasions. We also believe in the importance of reading Scripture in our services, so we feature a dedicated time to read aloud from a passage in the Bible, led by one of our pastors. The full counsel of God’s Word speaks to our lives today, and we want to let it speak for itself in our services. After we read, we will often look to the passage at hand to guide a prayer in light of its truth, which may be a prayer of adoration, confession, thanksgiving, or supplication depending on the passage.
On certain Sundays, we will celebrate the work of Christ by participating in these two ordinances. Baptism is for believers who wish to follow Christ’s example, publicly declaring their faith. It represents the Christian’s association with the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. As he is immersed in the water, he declares his death to the old way of life, and as he is raised, to follow Christ with the new life granted him at salvation. We generally have baptisms once a month. The Lord’s Supper is for all born-again believers who wish to follow Jesus’ example of sacrifice and surrender. A humbling event, the Lord’s Table is designed to help us reflect on Jesus’ body and blood, seen in the bread and cup, given for us at the cross. We generally celebrate this ordinance together on the second Sunday of the month. To read our doctrinal statement about these events, click here.
The centerpiece of our worship service is the sermon. It is the time when God’s Word is read, explained, and applied to our lives. In many churches, pastors pick and choose pieces of the Bible they wish to relate to their people, often leaving out substantial themes of Scripture that are important for a full picture of Christianity. At FBC, instead of offering a message on some topic important to the pastor, our sermons generally work through a book of the Bible so that we hear all of what God wants us to hear. We believe that listening to a sermon is an act of worship. We don’t listen merely to be entertained, but we gather around God’s Word to hear its truth, to take in its challenges, and to live it out in our lives. Accordingly, you might wish to take notes to help in this process. You might also wish to write down questions you have about the passage. Our pastors would love the chance to talk to you about these questions. To view a sermon online, click here.
The Bible speaks to the needs of everyone. At the end of our worship service, we want to allow for every individual, of every spiritual state, to respond to God’s Word. We often do this by singing specific themes related to the sermon together. Sometimes we allow for a time of silent prayer. Most Sundays, you will have the opportunity to speak to a pastor in the front of the room as we sing. However, we always encourage you to seek a pastor out after our service if you want to know how to appropriately follow God’s Word. Our pastors are easy to find after the service, and are available to talk with you in private, too. The preaching of the Bible changes our lives. We want to ensure that you have every opportunity to live out that change.
Our church does much more than what you’d see on a Sunday morning. Our other activities are featured in the bulletin, or you can have a look at our calendar here. In a way, our worship services are the main event. However, one of the key places to make personal connections with other church members is our Sunday School classes. We encourage you to visit one of these classes to get a wider picture of our congregation. At our welcome desk, you can find a Sunday School guide, which has a listing, description, and location for all of our Sunday School classes. These groups are a wonderful place to begin to get connected at FBC. Click here to find out more about them.