The top 7 things I have learned over 7 years.


This past Sunday I celebrated 7 years as Pastor of Open Bible Baptist Church. It has been a blessing to be able to come back and pastor the church that I grew up in. I am thankful for the group of people that God has brought together to serve Him in our area. The people of Open Bible are some of the best Christians that I know, that is because of there former Pastor of 43 years who weekly proclaimed the Word of God and taught them strong doctrine, for which I am very grateful.

Having the privilege of preaching and leading such a wonderful band of Christians, there are somethings that I have learned as Pastor and I wanted to share them with you.


  • God is always faithful. 1Corinthians 1.9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.Open Bible has gone through a tremendous transition over these past 7 years and through it, all God has remained faithful.


  • Some people do not handle adversity well. During these 7 years, the church, as well as myself, have experienced a great deal of adversity. I have found out that some people just can not cope with adversity so they choose to leave. Sometimes this is God’s way of purging His church.


  • When adversity strikes at times all you can do is stand. Ephesians 6.13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.You may not see to be moving forward but just stand. Like a ship that is being pounded by a storm will at times drop anchor and just wait for the storm to pass. Just stand. As believers, we must anchor our souls to Jesus Christ and just stand.


  • God does not owe anyone an explanation and that includes me. In our humanity, we want to know why. Why has God allowed this, why are we going through this situation. But God does not always give us the why. Sometimes people have said to me, “Pastor, if I just knew why you were doing what you were doing I would be able to better trust you.” That may be helpful at times in human relationships. But in all reality NOT knowing WHY is what really breeds trust. God does not always tell us why so we will just learn to trust Him.


  • The faithfulness of God’s people is one of the greatest encouragements for a pastor. As I said earlier this past Sunday was my 7th anniversary as Pastor of Open Bible, but we also celebrated the anniversaries of some long time members. It was such a blessing to bring these folks up in front of the church and honor them. Here are the names of the folks that we honored:
    • Deborah DelRosario – 30 years
    • Jeff Elliott – 30 years
    • Al Granda – 30 years
    • Carol Granda – 30 years
    • Norm Robinson – 30 years
    • Norma Fitting – 35 years
    • Kelly Barber – 40 years
    • Sam Booker – 40 years
    • Dwight Hartman – 40 years
    • Betty Hartman – 40 years
    • Bob Smith – 45 years
    • Marion Smith 45 years.


  • There is nothing that generates more excitement in a church than seeing people saved and become disciples of Christ. You can have new programs, new procedures, and new products. But these are just window dressing in comparison to seeing the gospel change peoples lives.


  • My wife and my family are my greatest earthly assets. In these past 7 years, my family has walked with me through many of the challenges and blessings at Open Bible. They have constantly been a support and encouragement to me. I am so blessed to have them by my side.

Open Bible, thank you for the 7 years you have allowed me to be your Pastor. I pray that we have many more years together.

George Riddell
Husband of a wonderful wife, Father of two terrific girls, Pastor of Open Bible Baptist Church

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