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February 24, 2002

Greetings, dear Shannon!

I love you!!! What can I do to support and serve you as you seek to serve and glorify the Lord with your life and the blessings He has bestowed upon you? I pray about you and the other brothers and sisters often, and the Lord has shown me ways that you all could be blessed and a blessing to others in "church planting" ministries. Your willingness to put nothing above Christ in your life serves as a powerful example of godliness that could have a positive impact on both the secular, hypocritical, materialistic, idol-worshiping church and the society of which it is a part. The Lord could surely use you to establish small, healthy bodies of believers that practice what the Lord preaches. The New Testament provides evidence that He uses local churches to bring many lost souls to salvation and to the joy (which includes suffering!) of a biblical lifestyle, which includes loving and discipling one another within the body. You and the brothers and sisters are uniquely qualified to establish such local churches.

I've enclosed the booklet written by Pastor Dever about the nine marks of a healthy church. Oh, this vision provides a wonderful focus for the lives of those seeking to serve the Lord!!! Capitol Hill Baptist Church (CHBC) strives corporately to exemplify the standards for local churches and Universal Church set forth in the New Testament. We're far from perfect, but the Lord has abundantly blessed us as a body and as individual members. I pray that you and some of the others in your group will someday visit and perhaps work together with us as we seek to cooperate and serve the Lord.

You'll find people in all phases of Christian maturity at CHBC, where the Lord brings together those of all ages and in all stages of spiritual, social, emotional, intellectual, and physical development. To remain members, we must strive to live by biblical principles that are definitely counter-cultural and not politically correct. We practice the spiritual disciplines: assembling together 2-3 times a week to worship and study the Bible as a church body, small group Bible studies, daily devotions and prayer, and the other elements set forth in our Church Covenant (which was written in the 19th century!). I've enclosed a copy of the Covenant and other materials for you to read.


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