I grew up attending First Baptist Church Naples. I accepted Christ as my Savior when I was in the 5th grade and was baptized at the Pine Ridge Road location. My family always went to church together on Sunday mornings, Sunday nights, and Wednesday night dinner and church. Every week, we would eat Sunday lunch with my grandparents after church. We were the typical Baptist family that believed that family worship and good food were important.
My wife and I continued this legacy of family worship and great food, but wanted to incorporate family missions as an important part of raising our children. My wife and daughter ventured to Argentina on their first mission trip. The experience they had changed their lives.
The following year, our entire family went on a mission trip to Atlanta, where I was able to watch my daughter and son share their testimony and the Gospel with other kids. As a parent, this was an incredibly rewarding experience.
Over the next five years, during our kids’ spring break, we went as a family to the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua multiple times. Each trip brought new opportunities. It always amazed me how doors would open for these high school students to boldly share God’s Word in schools, parks, baseball fields, and even in the middle of the street. In looking back, I am able to see God’s hand in so many aspects of the trips and how mission trips shaped our family.
The Church’s mission statement is “To know Christ and make Him known in Southwest Florida and Beyond.” I would like to encourage you and your family to follow the Church’s mission statement and look into many of the mission opportunities that First Baptist Church offers, both locally and around the world. The spiritual rewards for yourself, your family, and the people you come into contact with will be long lasting.