Building Bridges To Our Community

After the remnants of the nation of Israel were exiled into Babylon, Jeremiah delivered a word from the LORD to them from Jerusalem by means of a letter. The letter was encouraging on multiple levels, but we find this interesting instruction contained within it: “Seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.” (Jeremiah 29:7) In other words, as the city goes so will you go. 

This principle is true for us today as well.  We should seek the welfare of the city – and more specifically the community – where we reside. We should have a vested interest in the welfare and prosperity of our town. For this reason Lookout Valley Baptist Church has a long history of building bridges to our community. As I thought about this, I considered some of the ways we’ve done this just since I’ve been here:

  • Open our facilities up to Lookout Valley Elementary, Lookout Valley Middle/High, Chattanooga Christian School and homeschool groups for various functions and activities. This has included PTA programs, class fellowships, regular gym usage for basketball practice, and for the past four years a homeschool fencing group.
  • Provide transportation and drivers in our vehicles for trips and events for each of the above schools.
  • Provide volunteers at local school sporting events like running the concession stand, manning the sideline chains at football games, and feeding the football team.
  • Purchasing advertising in school programs and yearbooks.
  • Allow the usage of church owned equipment like tables, chairs, popcorn machine and more for school events.

As you can see, much of the “bridge building” has been done through the local schools.   Education is a great opportunity to connect with many families in order to create relationships for gospel influence.  

Back in January we were approached by another group that shows great promise for bridge building to our community.  The group is known as “Classical Conversations” (CC). CC is a nationwide homeschool network with several “communities” in the greater Chattanooga area.  As they looked at their roster of families they discovered they currently have 33 families involved in their program from the 37419 (Lookout Valley) zip code! The Chattanooga area coordinator met with our elders in March and asked that we host a local CC community one day/week from August to May.  They provide their own liability insurance and each student pays a usage fee to cover any increased utilities.


After much discussion and prayer we have determined this is another great opportunity for connecting with new families and building bridges to our community!  Additionally, it is good stewardship of the buildings God has blessed us with, buildings that currently sit empty and unused for 166/168 hours each week.

Pastor Troy

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