A Good Catch

July 22, 2010

By Chelsea Wade, South Main Member & Buckner Ministries Coordinator

Quite frankly I didn’t need any convincing to attend Faith Singles Night at the Astros. All you can eat extreme hot dogs were more than enough incentive to prompt ticket purchase. Bottomless peanuts, popcorn, and access to the Champions Pavilion were also worthy additions.

I was also motivated by the possibility. This event was another opportunity to laugh, chat, and cheer on the home team. I don’t consider my relationship status as a determining factor of my identity but I do acknowledge it. I even persuaded a good friend to go with me. Of course I provided a disclaimer during the invitation: “Ok, I don’t know who will be there…BUT I have faith that they will all be single!” You have to appreciate events where the guest list is that straightforward!

When we arrived at the social we stopped and stood before two black doors. My friend likened her emotions to jitters on the first day of school. I opened the door on the right and we walked in…Michael Bourn approached me and said that he’d been waiting for me…pigs began to fly…

So FYI, that last part didn’t happen. I got to mingle with attendees from other churches! I added neon relish to my hot dog! I sat with fellow Young Adult Community members! I had a great experience that I got to share with friends.

I’m not counting down the days hoping that my life as a “single” will end. I’m thankful for the journey and I’m grateful for South Main as a home base.



Sharing Our Stories…Kaci Coble

May 2, 2010

By Kaci Coble, South Main Member

Kaci Coble is a new member to South Main Baptist Church.  She is actively involved in the Young Adult Community and periodically writes for The Main Blog.

Finding South Main Baptist Church was like searching for and finally finding my soul mate. Finding a church home was something I’d been meaning to do for some time, but just hadn’t gotten around to. I began “church shopping” – often feeling disappointed or uninspired, but the day I walked into South Main, I knew I was home. I didn’t want to visit another church – I had found my heart right there on that Midtown corner.

South Main is truly a church I didn’t think existed anymore. It’s a genuine, pure, kind-hearted place of love and acceptance. The church family is warm and welcoming without being overbearing; motivational yet non-judgmental. The passion, resources, and opportunities run deep. The pastor, Steve Wells, is nothing shy of amazing. Week in and week out he moves and touches my soul in a way I couldn’t imagine making it through my week without. The message is always an eloquent balance between pick me up and keep me grounded. Never fluffy, not dated, just right. This is truly a place where you can feel God’s grace and peace throughout the buildings and the people alike.

Despite the fabulously ornate sanctuary or the magnificent campus, should all the walls come crumbling down, the group of people left standing would have enough faith and love to move mountains. Becoming a member of this church family was like committing to a lifelong journey together with my soul mate, one I am certain will carry me through all of my sad days as well as my glad days, making life just that much sweeter.

We are never more like Jesus than when we SHARE…. As we learn to share our stories, we learn to share our faith…

Share Campaign 2010

Sharing Our Stories….. Hart Brupbacher

April 21, 2010

By Hart Brupbacher, South Main Member

Hart and Linda Brupbacher are both members of the Discipleship Committe.  Hart sings in the Sanctuary Choir and Linda teaches Sunday School to our Young and Median Adults.

During the year we spent looking for a church home, Linda and I went to many different churches. We visited South Main for the first time in August. The mountain of shoes that greeted us as we entered the Welcome Center told us that South Main is a church focused on missions and helping people in need. We proceeded to the church service where the special offering taken to help provide water for Houston’s homeless further reinforced South Main’s mission emphasis.  The missions emphasis was appealing to us.

Equally appealing was the warmth and friendliness we encountered as well as the theology we heard expressed and saw lived out. We visited Sunday School, and one of the first Sundays we were invited to go to lunch after church. We found the worship service to be very meaningful and Steve’s sermons to be thoughtful, challenging, and inspirational. Steve spent time with us discussing our beliefs and helping us figure out that South Main would be a good fit for us. After only a few weeks, we joined–and our lives have really changed in a positive way because of that decision.

We are constantly amazed by the way the family of South Main has embraced us. The Christian fellowship and friendships that we have encountered in our Sunday School Community, South Main at Home groups and choir have been a wonderful experience. Through some potential health problems we found out that we do not have to travel the road alone – we have a family at South Main who will be with us and support us in the journey. We also have friend to celebrate with us.

At South Main we’ve found friendship, service opportunities, meaningful growth and worship opportunities and much needed support—all of which make us really glad we are a part of this family of faith and totally comfortable recommending South Main to others.

We are never more like Jesus than when we SHARE…. As we learn to share our stories, we learn to share our faith…

Share Campaign 2010

God’s Hand Revealed – by Anne Tulek

October 23, 2009

By Anne Tulek

By Anne Tulek

I had travelled home from my surreal expatriate life in 1992-era Eastern Europe for Thanksgiving holiday week to see my close-knit family and friends.  On this particular evening, I was with my sister Tanya Marie (aka Pham Thi Than Nga), whom my parents of five children had adopted when she and I were eight years old.  When she joined the family I went from being the youngest of five kids to being the youngest of 6 (by 2 months!).  The story of her journey from war-torn Vietnam as a young child is an amazing story about God’s Hand being revealed through the unselfish and risky actions of many people across numerous time zones and cultures…but I digress.

On this night in particular, we were in Tanya Marie’s apartment, watching a video that she and her husband had taken during a trip to see her biological family in Vietnam, with whom she had made successful contact many years prior.  She and her Vietnamese siblings had planned this trip carefully.  It was her first trip home since being taken away at the age of five with a group of 80 school children whose administrators thought were going to be killed for learning about Jesus.  They thought this was their only chance to stay alive, and Tanya Marie was charged with the responsibility of keeping her two younger (!) siblings together and safe.  Although these many years later her parents knew that she was alive and well as a 26 year-old American, they had no idea that she was coming to see them.

The video frame bounced along in the van, showing the dirt road for one minute, the silk worm farm landscape the next, followed by my sister’s anxious and excited face — close up with hand rapidly waving saying something like “Hi honey!”.  (Reality TV before that cultural movement was born!)  A small shack appeared on the left horizon and eventually the van slowed to a halt in front of it.  Tanya Marie got out and knocked on the home’s door.  What followed brings me to tears every single time I contemplate it.

Her mother, so many years after having her 3 youngest children sent away to avoid the certain death all feared was ahead of them, opened the door and stood there, hands over her face and screaming.  It was a piercing guttural moan, really, that seemed that it would never stop.  She was expressing what?  Joy?  Pain?  Guilt?  Shock?  As a mother who cannot for a second imagine my own children being torn from me and raised on the other side of the world by complete strangers, I’m sure that at least one of the things she was expressing was deep and abiding love for this beloved child of hers.

I sat, glued to the home-made video sobbing, aching, and rejoicing with my brave and resilient sister.  I was struck by so much about this scene:  her mother’s joy, her father’s hugs, her siblings’ proud chatter about what they had successfully orchestrated, the kitchen wall plastered with every picture, drawing, and letter Marie had mailed to them over the years…all amidst the rustic beauty of the silk worm farm.

But I was most deeply struck by the raw expression of love in this miracle I had just witnessed on video:  the tender reunification of a mother and her daughter, long separated by the sin and hate of war.

There are moments when my intellect challenges my heart to doubt God’s capacity to love each and every one of us as his precious child.  And then I remember my sister’s journey and this video scene that is so deeply burned into my memory.  To me it is one of the times that God has revealed His hand in a way that none of us could miss.  And it is a key reminder that God wants to hold us – His unique and special creations – safely in His arms every day.  All we have to do is knock on that simple door.