Global Vision Bible Church on Old Lebanon Dirt Rd. in Mt. Juliet is one mile from my house. (Old Lebanon Dirt Rd. isn’t really a dirt road.)
I drove by this building literally thousands of times in 15 years before I ever set foot in the place. I was always en route to some other destination, oftentimes a different church. I’ve been going here with my wife for two years now.
There are many good churches in the Mt. Juliet area. I have been in some of them. I have nothing negative to say about any of them. But GVBC is the most authentic church I’ve ever attended as an adult. By “authentic,” I mean I have never gotten the feeling that anyone was putting on airs by pretending to be someone they weren’t.
We are all sinners in need of a savior. We freely admit that.
The first time my wife and I visited this church, they concluded service by praying over a young man who was going to start a prison sentence the following day.
Our pastor, Greg Locke, is an expository preacher, meaning we’ll take a book of the Bible (currently 1-3 John) and preach through the entire book one verse at a time. Some Sunday’s we’ll only cover 2 or 3 verses. Even a short book can take months to properly “unpackage.”
Pastor Locke unashamedly preaches the truth of the Scriptures. He has a burgeoning Facebook ministry with more than three quarters of a million followers. People come from all over to hear him preach. They are so starved for truth that they’ll sometimes visit from different states. Our pastor is fond of saying that the truth sounds like hate to those who hate the truth.
Some of the people who follow him on Facebook say vile things about my pastor. I don’t think Pastor Locke is the ultimate object of their discontent, though. I think they are really mad at God. Pastor Locke is just the conduit.
I respect a man who preaches truth in the face of withering opposition from the enemy. They hated Jesus, too. Christ warned us there would be opposition and that the world would hate us for it.
You could say that GVBC is an outpost of truth in a world that has gone crazy. Both our morning services are full, and sometimes the 11 a.m. service is standing room only. We are adding a Saturday evening service to alleviate the “problem.”
We recently bought some adjacent property for office space and extra parking. About 80% of the current building is the auditorium, and there was no office space.
In addition to a full house, we broadcast our services over the Internet. I’m the guy who runs the video camera. I enjoy having a job to do there. It takes a lot of volunteers to properly “do church” at GVBC.
I genuinely pray that God would mold us into a true New Testament church. That might sound archaic, but believe me when I say that human nature has not changed at all since the events in the Book of Acts were unfolding. That was more than 1,900 years ago. We have better technology now, but we are otherwise the same.
Even though we are still a relatively small church by the numbers, I prefer to think of GVBC as a mega-church. Any church that has Christ at the head is a mega-church.