Published November 1, 2012
DULUTH — Both pastors and the laity are generous in their praise of The Church Renewal Journey. The Journey is a series of lay-led, revival-type weekends that take the church on a biblically-based, spiritual journey to ignite a revitalized passion and purpose on the part of the membership.
Delmar and Peggy Murdock, who served as coordinators for Georgia Baptist Lay Renewal until recently, were recognized in a special appreciation service at the Georgia Baptist Missions and Ministry Center on Oct. 2. The Murdocks, who have been married 61 years and currently live in Stockbridge, have been serving in this strategic role since 1991.
Glen McCall, who gives leadership to GBC’s Men’s Ministry, hailed the Murdocks for their faithful, selfless service to the cause of Christ and acknowledged them as champions of The Church Lay Renewal Journey.
Jerry Cross, pastor of Flat Creek Baptist Church in Fayetteville, addressed those who had gathered for the occasion and expressed his thanksgiving for the Lay Renewal Weekends. Cross testified, “Our church was hurting, divided, and discouraged and we were looking for help when God put us in touch with Delmar and Peggy. The entire experience was God-sent. The weekend event restored love, unity, purpose, and renewal. Every age group in our church was blessed.
“The different interactive experiences provided throughout the weekend opened up many lines of communication and involvement between many generations of people. Lay renewal has prompted a ‘renewed’ sense of belonging within our family of faith.”
Mount Vernon Baptist Associational Missionary Bob Green explained to the celebrants that as a young man he wanted to be president of a large corporation and a millionaire. He admitted, “I was in the banking business and moving up the ladder of success when I attended a Lay Renewal Weekend. Something happened during that weekend that changed my life.
“Findley Edge, who taught at Southern Seminary, came on a second weekend and God really became real to me in a powerful way. I had two lay renewal weekends in my church and whereas we had baptized no one, we baptized 40 new converts in a short period of time.
“Lay renewal is the beginning of a reformation. It is when the ministry is put in the hands of the ‘laos’ – the people – but we have not really unleashed the people in our churches. According to Ephesians 4 we are all called, gifted, and sent.”
Henry Blackaby, of Blackaby Ministries International, spoke on Genesis 12 and cited Abraham as a man who responded to God’s call. He exclaimed, “God works corporately, but mostly in individual lives. Think of what God did through Martin Luther, Charles Spurgeon, and David Livingstone. There is no telling what God can do in your life when you are yielded to him.”
McCall then recognized the Murdocks and presented them with a plaque of appreciation for their service to the cause of Christ. The plaque is highlighted with a Lay Renewal focused scripture verse that has special meaning to the Murdocks: “As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another … that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ” (I Pt. 4:10-11).
The Murdocks invested much of their lives into their children and now all four children are faithfully serving the Lord. They are: Keith Murdock (wife – Margaret), minister of education at First Baptist Church, Duluth; Curtis Murdock (wife – Georganne), minister of music, Beech Haven Baptist, Athens; Jeff Murdock (wife – Renee), minister of music, Macedonia Baptist, Oxford; and Sharon Murdock Musslewhite (husband – Art) of Hartsville, SC.
The recognition service was concluded with McCall introducing the new Georgia Church Lay Renewal Coordinators, Dewayne and Joann Peterson, who are members of First Baptist Atlanta.
For more information about The Church Renewal Journey contact Georgia Baptist Convention Men’s Ministries at (800) 746-4422, ext.256.
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