Thursday Thoughts

June 8, 2023

June 8, 2023

You may notice a new face in the church office this summer. Lillian Land resigned as Administrative Assistant on Wednesday, May 31, and Toni Banks, who regularly serves as the assistant director of our preschool, is filling in during the summer while we search for our new Administrative Assistant. We wish Lillian well in all future endeavors and are grateful to Toni for filling in this summer.

We are, therefore, looking for a new Administrative Assistant. This position works 24 hours per week, Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Applicants for this position should be ready to help our ministries flourish by taking on clerical and support duties with proficiency and efficiency and should interact well with members of the congregation and outside guests.


• Kindness and a willingness to listen, to learn, and be challenged.

• Proven experience as an administrative assistant or similar role is preferred.

• Excellent written and verbal communication skills

• Strong organizational and time-management skills

• Proficiency in Microsoft Office with an aptitude to learn new software and systems

If you know of anyone who might be a fit for this position, please encourage them to apply by sending their resume to

Thank you,


June 1, 2023

June 1, 2023

Encourager Church Need & Opportunity 

As you may recall, on February 26 we entered into a covenant with Grace and Main Fellowship and Third Chance Ministries of Danville, VA in the role of Encourager Church.  The Missions Committee has communicated with Jessica Hearne as to their needs and the result is our first opportunity to put our prayers and support into action.  The ministry in Danville needs certain items to maintain their urban garden and to offer opportunity through their tool library for those they serve in the community seeking food & shelter.  If you have any of the following items in usable condition, please consider donating to this cause.  The items will be cleaned & re-furbished prior to transport to Danville.  This is a great opportunity to clear out that cluttered tool shed of duplicate tools in good shape but seldom used.  

Chainsaws—used but in operable condition  

Hand tools—loppers, pruners, trowels, small garden shovels, etc.  

You may drop-off hand tools in the mission cabinets located in the hallway across from the church office.  For chainsaw donations, please contact David McGuire in advance at (803) 221-2282.  

If you would like to provide support in another way, you may send cards of encouragement to:  

Grace & Main Fellowship 

Attention: Jessica Hearne 

228 Broad St 

Danville, VA 24541  


Mission Committee 

May 18, 2023

May 18, 2023

We are so excited to announce our 2023 high school and college graduates! Please join us this Sunday, May 21 as we celebrate them and their accomplishments during morning worship!

May 11, 2023

Prayer Quilts  

The Prayer Quilt Ministry at Aiken’s First Baptist Church has been active for most of the last fifteen years.  In that time, our church has given away more than 300 quilts to church members, community friends, as well as family members at a distance.  This past year was our most productive year yet, as we gave away 40 quilts in 2022!!  

Our church has made an impact on many lives through the quilt ministry.  The impact begins with fellowship in the quilt room every Thursday morning from 10-12, when our quilters meet.  Generally, there have never been more than ten workers at any given time, but through the years, we have taught half a dozen ladies to sew, improved our own sewing skills, and made lifelong friendships.  We have had award winning quilters work with us, as well as beginners, and even a few who do not sew at all!    

The quilts, with the prayers that they contain, make a difference in people’s lives.  Several church members have asked to be buried with their quilt – because it is from their own church!  Community members recognize that they have been prayed for, “Almost 100 ties, and I only know a few people there!”  One neighbor, after receiving a quilt and realizing its meaning, asked if we could please make one for her brother who was going through a tough time.  A young mother, a thousand miles from here, continued to ask our church to pray for her infant daughter as her illness progressed.  

Just recently, a friend in Virginia who had received a quilt a few years ago, asked us for prayers for her terminally ill stepson.  Of course we sent him a quilt, with all the prayers that you, the congregation, supply.  The quilt was a conversation starter for a young man who had questions about eternity.  The stepmother was relieved when she realized that he was “right with God” when he was called home.  And now, she has started a quilt ministry in her own church!  

When you see a prayer quilt on the table outside the library, please stop, say a prayer, and tie a knot.  Your prayers matter to those who are going through the darkest times of their life.  

Wanda Payne 

February 23, 2023

Dessert Auction

It’s almost here! Sunday, February 26th at 6:30 is our annual Dessert Auction! The Dessert Auction has proved to be the largest fundraiser in the life of our youth ministry. The funds raised provide scholarship money to supplement the cost of our trips for our youth. Currently, our youth have three main trips: Fall Retreat at $150, Middle School Mission Trip at $150, and Unidiversity at $350. Camps and retreats are essential in youth ministry! They provide the opportunity to focus on building relationships and strengthening relationships. Youth who participate in retreats experience God in ways impossible to convey in a couple hours a week in a church building. Getting away from home and church allows time for the youth to simply be together. Experiencing different environments and new challenges along with spending an extended time with their peers will help to create unique memories, which are vital parts of forming more authentic and long-lasting friendships. Youth trips can get expensive, and I never want money to keep any of our youth from having these opportunities. Participating in this auction ensures there are always funds available for our youth.

Last year’s Dessert Auction was a HUGE success! Let’s do it again! It will be $5 per person at the door. Coffee, tea, water, and milk will be provided and served by the youth as you enjoy your desserts! A new addition to the auction this year is we will be selling cakes by the slice. There is no expectation of participating in crazy bidding wars if that is not something you are interested in. But everyone loves community, and everyone loves dessert. So please come, buy a slice and spend the evening fellowshipping with your community!

I love this event. I love that this auction is possible because of the willingness of our congregation to donate desserts. I love the laughter and banter that comes along with bidding. I love watching the excitement on faces when dessert gets delivered to the table. More than anything, I love that so many people show up to support this ministry. Thank you for being a congregation who cares and so generously gives. I am excited to share this evening with you all!

Grace and Peace,
Sarah Laurence

Missions! Missions! Missions!

Do you have a heart for Missions?!

Your AFBC Missions Committee is offering 3 opportunities in the near future to impact our community in Jesus’ name.

Encourager Church.  This Sunday, Feb. 26 in the 11:00 am service, we will sign a three-year commitment to be an Encourager Church.  We will encourage the ministry of Grace and Main in Danville VA, which ministers to the homeless and near-homeless. AFBC will commit to pray, visit, send encouraging cards and items, and give financially through our Missions Budget. Plan to be here Sunday to hear Jessica Hearne speak of the work she and her husband, Josh, do in Danville.

Blood Drive. March 22 we will be hosting an opportunity to give to our community through a blood drive. From 2:00-6:00 pm in the gym, Shepeard Community Blood Center will be set up to receive your donation of the gift of life!  Appointment information can be found in the Tuesday Update.

Mission: HERE  (Helping Everyone Reach Everyone) will be offered this year in April. We will again be repairing homes for those in need in partnership with United Way. Project work dates are April 27-29, Thursday-Saturday.  An organization/kick-off will be held 6:00-6:45 pm Wednesday evening April 26.  A Celebration Family Time will be right after church April 30.

Children can participate through the Children’s Workshop Wednesday evening Apr 26, 6:45-7:30 pm during Children’s Missions and Sat April 29, 9:00 am-12:00 noon.

Youth can participate Saturday, Apr 29 on a ramp build.

Sign up for Mission: HERE now through March 31 in the office or through this link:  You can indicate how you would like to help and which days you are available on the sign-up form.  We’ll need volunteers to prepare and deliver lunches, Children’s Workshops helpers, house repair workers and assistants, and project team leaders. We’ll also be collecting items for gift baskets like last summer, so donations of small items can be left in the cupboard across from the office.

Be prayerfully considering how you will participate in these Mission opportunities to show our love and concern to our community.

February 9, 2023

Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!

I have heard from so many of you this week about how meaningful our worship with Second Baptist was this past Sunday. Some of you raved about the warmth and hospitality extended to us by Second Baptist. Some of you highlighted the joy of the worship experience. Others of you named the meaningful impact of worshiping with such a diverse body of Christ—some of you even worshiped with friends from the community or colleagues from work for the first time. And still others of you referenced the incredible food, the stunning facility, and the ease of the whole experience. Collectively, I think we all were astounded by the way God blessed this experience beyond our highest hopes.

As your pastor, I want to tell you how very grateful I am to each and every one of you. You showed up and exclaimed in a powerful way how very important this opportunity was and how committed we are to finding fruitful ways of bridging the divides—or as our choir beautifully sang, of tearing down every wall! You ministered hope to me. You showed our community who we truly are. And you added strength and trust to our ongoing relationship with our brothers and sisters at Second Baptist. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I cannot wait to see the unexpected and powerful ways that God guides and blesses this good work in the months and years to come.

If you will remember, during worship we were challenged to “Affect the Culture” by offering 5 random acts of kindness to individuals outside of our usual circle of relationship. If you accepted the challenge, I hope you will follow through on those acts of kindness in the month ahead. It doesn’t have to be anything grand or expensive, just a kind act offered to another human being. If you are open to sharing what you have done as an encouragement for others to do the same, you can share about the act on social media and simply add the hashtags #affecttheculture and #1stand2ndunite to your post. Adding the hashtags will help us to track and collect those experiences. If you aren’t adept at social media, you can also share your experiences with us on staff through email so that we can collect those experiences in that manner.

Again, thank you for leaning into this opportunity. Let’s pray that God will continue to bless this effort in surprising and powerful ways in the months and years to come.