The Apostle Paul said in Philippians 1:3 that he thanked God every time he remembered the people in the church at Philippi. His main praise for them was that they had partnered with him in his ministry.
There are many ways to partner with someone in ministry. Some give of their time, some give of their talents, and then some give of their financial resources. I personally am thankful for those who the Lord has put in my path during this journey of planting a church in Richmond Hill, Georgia.
There were many who prayed for me and the ministry here along the way. There were those who encouraged me with letters, emails or calls. There were those who have felt led to join with us in membership as a local unit of the body of Christ.
Then there were people like Johnny Murphy, who God allowed us to cross paths with.
As I summarize this, it doesn't tell the whole story. Johnny met with us and sensed the direction to give us the land we now worship on. He made it possible for us to be able to get a loan for our building, being the first recipient of The Betterway Foundation, which helps nonprofits get started.
Johnny let us draw money from this organization while the building was going up and the interest would not accrue until we moved in, and then at 3 percent interest. Then he offered us to pay interest only for the first couple of years if necessary, which we did not take advantage of – but was a comfort to know it was available.
We were given an opportunity to take advantage of a $80,000 matching grant from the denomination with which we are affiliated. But as a very small congregation then, that was going to be a challenge for us to match all of it.
Johnny found out about it and committed to raising $50,000 from himself and friends. He did so many other things by connecting us with the right people. For us here at New Beginnings, Johnny Murphy was a Godsend, and may the Lord comfort those he left behind.
He will be missed, for we were not the only people he helped.