Church Life

The Nations are Moving to Florida!

October 3, 2016, 12 Comments

On Sunday, I accepted the call to serve as the pastor for First Baptist Church of Bradenton, Florida. For some time, I’ve known that the Lord was going to move me back into full-time ministry. I’ve sought clarity from God, confided in close friends, talked to church leaders, and waited. The time has come and we’re ready for this new phase of life.

I’ve spent eight years working at LifeWay Christian Resources. During that time, I’ve been around some great people who labor in obscurity to deliver trustworthy resources to the church. I’ll always be grateful for the many lessons I’ve learned from these men and women. I’ve also been a bivocational pastor for The Fellowship for six years. We’ve moved through some deep waters together. But, as to be expected, the Lord has restored what was troubled and is doing some wonderful work through the people of the church.

I’ll spend two more weeks in Nashville where I’ll finish up my work with LifeWay. On October 9, I’ll preach at the Mt. Juliet campus of The Fellowship and then preach my final message on October 16 at the Two Rivers campus. If you’re in Nashville, I’d love to have you as a part of one of those worship services.

Then, I’ll begin my ministry with fbcbradentonFirst Baptist Church. The church is 127 years old and is positioned in the small downtown district of Bradenton. The beach community county has an eclectic mix of long-time residents raising their kids, single parent homes that are struggling to make ends meet, retirees who love living near the beach, and tens of thousands of snowbirds who live there for a few winter months each year. The area, however, is growing younger and more ethnically diverse. The church has been doing some great work of discipling members and reaching the community. In fact, they have a simple mission statement that summarizes everything: Share Jesus.

Angie and I are excited to join them in God’s work to this county and beyond. My work as an author will continue along as I’ve just recently signed a contract with LifeWay to write a Bible study on the book of James. I’ll also continue my service to Houston Baptist University and traveling to do some speaking at various events.

My simple request is that you offer a prayer on our behalf. No matter what change you encounter, it comes with the unexpected twists and turns. I’ve sought to know God’s will and sense that this is the next step we are to take. It is a high privilege to lead a church. Any interceding prayers that you can offer would be of the greatest value.

And, if you’re ever in the area, make sure you stop by for a visit.

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  • Reply Mark Harrison October 3, 2016 at 8:28 am

    Congratulations Philip! Julie and I are excited for you and Angie. A new phase of life in so many ways dawns before you. We are praying for a smooth transition and a fruitful ministry.

  • Reply Crumbley's October 3, 2016 at 9:04 am

    Congratulations! We are so happy for you all and excited about your new journey. Your new church sounds wonderful! We’re so thankful for your service at The Fellowship, and also for your friendship. We will miss you all dearly. We’ll be praying for you. God bless.

  • Reply Brian Drinkwine October 3, 2016 at 10:58 am


  • Reply stephen drake October 3, 2016 at 4:58 pm

    Best of luck (or rather providence), Philip.

  • Reply Mark and Tammy Edwards October 3, 2016 at 5:21 pm

    You’re gonna do so great !!! That church has no idea what’s in store!! Blessings to you and Angie and the boys as you transition to beach life (not gonna pray for you about that……pure envy!!)

    All our love and best wishes to The Nations!!!

  • Reply Eddie Boyett October 3, 2016 at 6:12 pm

    Welcome to Bradenton my wife and I are glad you are coming to our church. We look forward to meeting you and your family. We are out of town for the fall and will return early November.

    • Reply Philip Nation October 4, 2016 at 2:37 pm

      Looking forward to connecting with you in November.

      • Reply Nan napier October 16, 2016 at 9:58 am

        We are snow birds who attended the chutch all last year and loved it! We are headed your way next week! Buckeyes from the great state of O-H-I-O!! Ted and Nan Napier

  • Reply Randy October 3, 2016 at 8:17 pm

    Welcome to Florida!

  • Reply Brenda Trice October 4, 2016 at 6:44 am

    Congratulations! They are very blessed to get you and Angie. You are in our prayers!

  • Reply Deborah Smith October 10, 2016 at 9:08 am

    lol I thought you meant Nations as in countries around the world! I just said a prayer for you & family. Also, the nations are moving to Florida and the USA. May God use 1st Baptist Bradenton to reach the many people groups in Bradenton. We now have an Ethiopian Church meeting at Gentilly Baptist, New Orleans!

  • Reply Mercy October 26, 2016 at 4:35 pm

    I’ve been attending the Fellowship since March of 2016, I’ve only missed two Sundays since we were out of town. I loved hearing you preach, your sermons were spirit inspired and always gave me food for thought. Rarely does a sermon stay with me the whole week but yours did. I was in tears on the day you and your family said goodbye, I couldn’t bear the thought of saying goodbye face to face, it would have been very painful. I will really miss you. Even though you didn’t know me, you left had a significant impact on my life. I wish you well and please come back and visit. If I’m ever in your neighborhood, I will visit your Church. Thanks so much and be blessed abundantly

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