Pastor Michael Thomas of Love and Faith Christian Fellowship

by Tonya Dixon | March 12th, 2016
Pastor Michael Thomas

Pastor Michael Thomas

It’s not an easy feat to run a church; especially one with more than a thousand members. The fact of the matter is that people come and people go; there are good times, as well as bad, but no matter the situation or circumstance a church purposed by God will stand.

Love and Faith Christian Fellowship located in Greensboro, N.C. has done just that; it has stood the tests (and there have been many) of time. Over the years, the physical aspects of the church have changed, but the ministry has always boldly stood on one main principle, and that is the Word of God.

Senior Pastor, Michael Thomas says it’s the one thing that has singularly sustained Love and Faith. “I have been committed for 25 years to preach the Gospel and I think part of the success of our church, and when I say success that means that God is pleased with you, is because I have never strayed away from the Gospel. I have always preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” he said.

This year the ministry is celebrating 25 years of spreading the Gospel, by not only serving God, but also serving the community. Twenty five years is certainly an amazing accomplishment, but what may be even more amazing is the significant and notable growth the church has experienced, to which Thomas says can only be attributed to the power and faithfulness of God.

In 1991, the Mt. Gilead, N.C. native had no idea when he and his family set out to start a church, he would one day be entrusted with the spiritual guidance of so many people. Not only was God faithful, but Thomas was as well. He has taught and preached the Word of God with the same fervor and tenacity whether there were 200 people or 20 people in the congregation. Indeed, God has honored him for it.

“We started very small. It was just my wife, my daughter and me. I think we have grown with the church. We didn’t set out to be a big church,” said Thomas. “I knew we would have to love God and love people. I knew people would come with baggage, but I also knew the power of the Gospel. What makes our church unique is that we have grown mostly from people coming in and getting saved. People have heard the Gospel, responded to it and their lives have changed in a way that friends and family and even some enemies have seen a dramatic change.”

The growth has been so exponential that the church even expanded into a second location in Kernersville, N.C. However, the church didn’t grow by happenstance or coincidence. They prepared for growth. While the church as whole, prayed for it, they also began to plan and anticipate the growth they wanted. Thomas says he realized that in order for the church to grow, the people had to grow as well.

He truly believes in developing leaders instead of followers. Moreover, he says a healthy and strong church is constantly reproducing leaders. With over 90 ministries and well over 500 leaders, it’s a direct result of strong Biblical teaching, endeavoring to mature and grow people in Christ.

“I want to see people grow and I want to see people mature in Christ. It’s all a part of discipleship – bringing people from spiritual infancy to spiritual maturity,” he said. “I love seeing people saved. At 17 years old, I saw how my life was changed when I heard the Gospel. The Bible says that all of heaven rejoices when a sinner repents, so I’m endeavoring to make heaven happy every week.”

In a time when churches have often seen lack, Love and Faith has seen abundant blessings, but Thomas says it’s not because of anything he or any other leader has done, rather it is because the church gives back in a mighty way. Love and Faith is dedicated to missions. When the ministry first began, it was dedicated to sending $20 each month to assist a group in Israel, at the time it was all the church could afford. However, that little, consistent, monthly seed opened remarkable doors and paved the way for the church to truly be the hands, legs and feet of God and spread the Gospel to the uttermost parts of the world.

Over the years, Love and Faith has been able to build hospitals, orphanages and offer support in various ways, across the world, including Tanzania, China, Malaysia, India, Israel and countless other areas. Not only do they build, but they teach and people are receiving salvation and the love of God like never before. “I believe one of the reasons why God has blessed us these 25 years is because we have always been mission minded. We sometimes think God is an American. God is not an American,” Thomas said. “I believe if you really take care of God’s business, then He will take care of your business. He does not need us to manipulate anything for finances.” Nevertheless, Thomas says that the mission field is not relegated to a country thousands of miles away. Love and Faith is just as dedicated to supporting and serving within its own community as it is foreign countries.

Recently returned from a mission trip to Ghana, Thomas has been working on a book dealing with nine spiritual principles. Not only has he been teaching it as a series in the church, but he also teaches it and other leadership topics to pastors through the Good Shepherd’s Fellowship International, an extension of the church solely for the purpose of developing and mentoring pastors after God’s heart.

In celebration of 25 years of spreading the Gospel, a special banquet has been planned to be held at the Koury Convention Center. The occasion is certainly momentous and noteworthy, but Thomas chalks it up to simply being another reason to glorify God for one more year of provision and expansion. Love and Faith is “One Church in two Locations” but as God continues to reward the ministry and pastor’s faithfulness, the tagline will surely need revising. Indeed, the Gospel will be expanded and more lives will be changed through the ministry “where Jesus Christ is Lord and the people are loved.”

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