new years message from the pastor

The 1991 edition of “The Baptist Hymnal” has only one of the many hymns composed by R. Maines Rawls, native of Jacksonville, Florida. “Take My Life, Lead me Lord,” has to be his noteworthy hymn.  Over the 96 years of his faithful service to God, Maines used his musical gifts as a staff member for both the Georgia and Alabama Baptist State Conventions and worked with LifeWay Christian Resources for 40 years. He was a Baptist Minister with a theological degree from Mercer University, Macon, Georgia, hymn writer and pianist all rolled into one committed servant of God. Maines and his wife of 73 years, Frederica Roberts, had two children, 2 Grandchildren and 6 Great Grandchildren. They lived in Brentwood, Tennessee for 60 years, and resided in Lexington, Ky at the time of his death October 28, 2012.

This week we begin a New Year, a fresh page of life.  Someone has wisely said, “Who we are is God’s gift to us. What we make of ourselves is our gift to God.”  The words of  R. Maines Rawls notable hymn could be our theme song for 2020.  As in so many cases prayers become poems and poems become hymns.. What more meaningful prayer, poem, hymn, could we adopt for the New Year in our striving to present to God the gift of a committed life? Here is the essence of that prayer –

Take my life, lead me Lord

Take my life, teach me Lord

Take my life, send me, Lord

Make my life useful to Thee

May it be so for you and me in 2020. HAPPY NEW YEAR!

In His Love,


Happy New Year!