Pastor’s Newsletter 2019

December 2019

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” John 1:14

Dear Fellow Believers,

It is hard for us in our finite minds to comprehend what the words quoted above really mean. We can assent to the definitions of the words and the concept that is described. But to be in eternity, the fact that God without limit willingly submitted to put on human form is beyond fleshly comprehension. However, this is exactly what we are celebrating in Christmas. The Creator communing with creation in order to redeem the creation. This is indeed an unmatched gift. Thank you God!

Jesus was God’s agent of creation (Colossians 1:16), He speaks and His words become reality, and then He is born as a baby that could not speak a single intelligible word. Christmas is full of paradoxical thoughts like this. He was born to die, God in flesh, Son of God and Son of Man, born innocent to carry the sins of the world, Jesus is the greatest gift in the universe.

As Followers of this Christ, we are commissioned to tell this story and that of His death, burial and resurrection as often as we can to those who know it and to those who do not. Many years ago it became a popular catch phrase to say, “Jesus is the Reason for the Season!” There has been a movement in culture to focus on the more secular aspects of Christmas instead of the real reason. I pray that we will all remember the journey to Bethlehem, the shepherds keeping their flocks, the angels singing peace on earth, and the wise men coming from afar, all for the birth of the Christ who was born to save all mankind from the wrath of God.

We are so blessed. This year we will have a special night of celebration on December 8th, “Keepsake Christmas.” Jamie will be leading us in this family event for all, we will have finger foods and desserts as well as participate in a unique presentation of the story of Christmas. Join us for a great time of fellowship and remembrance. Also, we will have a Christmas Eve Candlelight service to celebrate the Light of the World coming to give us hope and salvation. This will be a reflective and inspiring time to consider God’s great sacrifice that was initiated in this event.

On December 14th, Cindy and I will be opening our home for the church and for our neighbors. You are all invited to stop by for some fellowship and Christmas refreshments. We have been working hard on some big renovations and we are excited to have our church family and neighbors in our home to share in this wonderful season. We will be sharing more specific information about this day soon.

Lastly, this is budget month. You should have received the proposed budget for 2020 in your email last week, or you can pick one up at the church. Please be praying for our Family Meeting on December 15th. God has great things in store for us in the New Year!

I pray that you all will have a Wonderful Christmas!

Michael C. Smith

November 2019

Dear Friends and Fellow Believers,

November is upon us again, and Fall is in full display. How beautiful are the colors of the Fall with leaves changing, how nice are the cooler temperatures, and the anticipation of the holidays that are ahead of us? This month we will enjoy the gathering of family and friends to celebrate and remember all that God has blessed us with this year. How great is it to live in a nation that set apart a day to Thank God for His many blessings? Regardless of what the revisionist-historians say, Thanksgiving is to give thanks to the One True God of the Bible who led our forefathers to come to this continent and found this great nation. We are not without our historical faults, that is true, however, this is the greatest nation in the history of the world.

In just a few days we will be hosting the Christianity & Culture Conference in partnership with The Worldview Academy and The Bridge Network of Churches, who gave us a generous sponsorship and has endorsed the conference to its 98 churches. I hope you have been and will continue to pray that God will bring many to attend and be impacted by this event. There is so much going on in our culture today that needs to be addressed biblically. This will be an opportunity for all of us to be equipped to answer important questions, and be conversant in matters that are affecting so many. Please register now and plan to attend and serve on November 8 & 9.

During September and October, we also began our new season of D-Groups. It is great to see more of our body embracing the Disciple making life style. We are encouraged my so many verses to make disciples, to grow, study God’s Word, to be involved in personal accountability, to pray for the lost, and so many of the aspects of D-Groups. Again, I am hearing how even at the beginning of our year how some are seeing a change in their life due to the D-Group experience. We will launch again next September! Begin to pray now about being in a D-Group!

Make sure you introduce yourself (if you haven’t already) to Andrew and Hannah Carpenter, our new Minister of Music family. We are excited to see how the Lord has led them to be a part of the Restoration Church family.

One other thing, this week we will have an election. As followers of Christ we have a duty to be good citizens. Romans 13 and many other passages instruct us to respond rightly to our governmental leaders. In our nation there is no better show of appreciation or displeasure than the vote. Our hope is not in the government, but we do need to be represented and guarded by “magistrates” who hold to similar convictions as we do. Most nations of the world do not have the freedoms we do, and do not experience such peaceful change of power. We must participate as we are allowed in order to stand for the Lord and for our Nation. Please remember to vote.

I hope that you will have a safe and joyous holiday season. Remember to share at every opportunity that Thanks are to God and Christmas is for Jesus! We should all be warmed and encouraged by the time we will spend with friends and family, as well as blessed by the remembrance of the great lengths God was willing to go to demonstrate His love. Happy Thanksgiving!

In the bond of Peace,

Michael C. Smith

October 2019


Dear Friends and Fellow Believers,

Last week the church staff all took a day and went off-site to a local retreat center to pray, plan and connect. The day was a true blessing to each of us individually and helped to bring us closer together as a team. During our calendar session, as we were looking at the coming fall months and 2020, I was asked about discipleship and other aspects of church life. In response to that question I asked rhetorically, “What should the life of a Restoration Church member look like?” As I answered that question, Kelley responded by asking me, “Did you explain it to the church like that?”  The answer was no, but I will now.

How does it all fit together in a cohesive vision and strategy to help us form community, relationship, character and mission for God’s glory? Most of us are experienced church goers from way back. I did not grow up in church, but I came to know the Lord 40 years ago, and I have been active in church ever since. Many of you have been here at Restoration at least that long or longer. Some of us don’t know how not to come to church, but to what end? Is it a thing that we do because we do it, or does it truly have meaning in our lives? We are told in Romans that God has called us and chosen us to receive His Gospel so that our lives will be conformed to the life image of Jesus. Coming to church by itself will not accomplish this end.

Jesus was sent to be born according to the plan of God, as a boy His self-proclaimed mission was to be about His Father’s business, as a man He prayed not My will but Your’s (God the Father’s) be done. For Jesus, mind, body, purpose, life and death were for God and in God’s hands. Jesus was raised in a worshiping community at temple, He lived in relationship with family, friends and neighbors, He was taught by His Father and His earthly father also, and worked and served with His talents. Jesus was a real person that was born, grew, was educated, and lived as we do. Then He died like none of us could.

As the church, we are charged with helping each other become more like Him in mind, body, purpose, life and death. We do that in a few primary areas:

WORSHIP – Each Sunday we come together as a community of faith to worship the Lord. We join together in prayer, songs of praise and worship, preaching and teaching of God’s Word, taking of The Lord’s Supper, and fellowship. This is the corporate gathering of the church body where we celebrate God and love each other.


SMALL GROUP – On various days of the week we come together in small groups, in homes or at church to build relationships, study the word, fellowship, pray and connect. Small group is more relational than the Sunday experience and allows for deeper relationships and more intense caring.


DISCIPLESHIP GROUP – For the past 18 months, we have had active Discipleship Groups of 3 or 4 men who have been meeting together for personal Bible Study, accountability and character development, and prayer for the lost. This group allow for personal transparency in a covenant group of trust. Participants commit to daily devotions, honest disclosure, and sincere prayer.


MINISTRY TEAM – God has endowed us with the manifestation of His Spirit living inside of each one of us individually. As such, we are gifted to serve in His church. We are told in 1 Corinthians that, “He has given gifts to each one for the profit of all.” As we serve teaching, assisting, cleaning up, hanging fliers, giving out breakfast, making copies, counting money, and in ways I don’t even know about, we are experiencing the fulfilling purpose of God in our lives, and growing in Christ-likeness.

To put it more succinctly, at Restoration Church we demonstrate our love for God when we WORSHIP in community, we demonstrate our love for people when we connect in relational SMALL GROUPS, and serve within and without on MINISTRY TEAMS, and we transform lives through growth in DISCIPLESHIP GROUPS. Connecting at each of these levels should be an intentional part of your personal spiritual surrender to the Lord. It is not our desire to make you busy for the sake of busyness, however, scripture clearly demonstrates each of these spiritual disciplines as formative in the life of a Christ follower. Pray for us as a church as we seek to live out the biblical mandate to provide you, our church body, with the opportunities to grow into Christ, and pray that you will surrender to the process by taking advantage of those opportunities for growth.

On September 28th we held a Discipleship Group Breakfast. At that gathering the ministry was completely explained and our D-Groups for 2019-20 were launched. If you are not in a D-Group this year, pray about joining one next year.

I hope this helps all of us to understand how everything works together. If someone asks you what it means to be a part of Restoration Church, consider this answer, “We gather together in community for WORSHIP, connect relationally in SMALL GROUPS, develop Christ-like character in DISCIPLESHIP, and find purpose through serving in MINISTRY.

Please let me know if you have any questions about this article and how you can get engaged at any level of our community of faith.

In the bond of Peace,
Michael C. Smith


September 2019

Dear Friends and Fellow Believers,

WOW!  Did summer fly by or what?  This month, college students are back on campus, regular school is back in session, and home school started the end of August.  When I worked at NSU for nine years, one of my favorite parts of the Fall was band practice.  The practice field was not far from my office, and I could hear the fight song being played repeatedly.  It always put a little bounce in my step when I lead a campus tour during that time.

Now as a pastor of a church, there is a similar phenomenon that happens.  Throughout the Summer families go on vacation (including mine) and it seems that every week someone is missing that I hope to see.  With the Fall and the return to school, families travel less and many come back to church on a more regular basis.  It is a joy to see the family of believers together and celebrating the presence of God.  It is exciting to see you all returning to a more consistent worship experience.  I do hope that your families are refreshed by times of travel and by new and exciting ventures which make lasting memories.

For the next couple of weeks, we will be looking at some important aspects of discipleship and church life.  Together we are called as a family to encourage one another in our walk with God, we are called to glorify Him in every aspect of our lives, to hold one another accountable to our God, and to be there when any of us is struggling.  The world is not kind to our faith and we are given to one another to help, console, and forgive.  We will be having a fellowship lunch on September 8th to kick off our new discipleship groups, as well as our home and small groups.  I am looking forward to all that God will do over the next 10 months as we again walk together in love and unity for the Glory of God!

This month, the staff will be taking a day and going off-site to have a planning retreat.  We will be considering all ministry areas and how God wants to use us to grow our faith as well as proclaim the faith to our community in love.  Please be praying for us as we go on this retreat.  Ask God to lead and direct our hearts as well as our heads as we seek to do exactly what He wants us to do as we seek to guide our church in the roles He has called us to.

It is my hope that all of us as fellow believers and children of God are praying to the Lord and asking Him to reveal to us through His spirit all that we need to see personal and corporately so that we can be fully surrendered to all He has for us.  At the end of my message at the end of August I said, “Give all that you have so that you can have all that He gives.”  Ask the Lord to show you where you affections are misaligned and when He shows you repent to let Him fill you beyond anything you have experienced in the past.  My prayer for you is that you would grow in grace and knowledge and devotion, that your greatest desire would be for His presence and power to be in you every day.


In the bond of Peace,


Michael C Smith


August 2019


Dear Friends and Fellow Believers,

As I write this newsletter I am sitting n the hotel lobby in Bishop’s Falls Newfoundland, Canada. We are one week in to a two week trip with my mother and sister. My brother was here, but he has returned to Virginia already and is back at work in the sweltering heat of our home state. We are experiencing cool weather, low 50’s in the mornings and highs in the low 70’s. Most mornings are foggy and cool, the sun does break through in the mid-afternoon.

We have seen some beautiful scenery (pics included). The coastline here is rocky and jagged with high cliffs and turbulent seas. We have seen whales, and hope to see an iceberg today. Yesterday we were in Twillingate, also known as Iceberg Alley. We did not see any, but we are still hoping.

Cindy and I have taken two wonderful hikes, one around Fairhaven, my mom’s home town, and one on the Skerwink Trail in Bonivista, rated as one of the top 10 trails in North America. God’s creativity is seen at every turn. The expanse of the seas and bays, the rugged cliffs and rocks, the vivid green meadows and trees, and the beautiful colors of the wild flowers are absolutely awe inspiring.


We have had a great time seeing family, aunts, uncles, cousins some of whom I have never met, but many I have prayed for over the years. Being able to sit and relax and share about our life and hearing about theirs has been great. We will return to Fairhaven in a few days where we are hoping to see more family and continue to experience more of Newfoundland.

Newfoundlanders are a wonderful people. As we are traveling we have been treated with warmth and kindness. Most are willing to stop and talk, offer a kind hello, give directions or information with gentleness. The people of this province are known for their hospitality and kindness, and so far they have lived up to their reputation. There are many churches in Newfoundland. Most of even the smallest villages have at least a Salvation Army Church or a Church of Canada (Anglican). I get the sense that there is a great need for the Gospel here.

By the time you read this we will be back home. I appreciate the opportunity to be here on my home soil. I have never spent this much time discovering the land where I was born. To be able to share this with Cindy has been the fulfillment of a life long dream. We are even traveling to places that my mom has never been. We are all discovering things for the first time, what a great memory to share.

I will have much to share when we return to Hampton. I hope that we all will have great things to share from our vacations this summer.  On the day we return to Virginia, I will be leaving immediately to take my final class for my studies at Southeastern Seminary in North Carolina. I have been reading during the trip, and I am gaining new perspectives that are important.

In light of that, I want to remind us all of the out reach on August 24th with Buckroe Pointe. The event is called the “Back to School Barbeque. We are going to be supplying the bounce houses, and games for the afternoon event. We want our members and attenders to come out and facilitate the games and entertainments, do face painting, and just be present to meet people and share some encouragement. We will continue to share information about the event as it gets closer, please mark your calendar and plan to attend.

God bless you, I look forward to seeing you all soon!

In the bond of Peace,

Michael C. Smith

July 2019

Dear Friends and Fellow Believers,

WOW! The summer is at full steam! VBS is behind us, members are heading out on vacations, temps are north of 90 multiple times per week, and the longest day of the year has already been lived. Don’t blink!

Speaking of VBS, God did a great work! This year we moved our VBS to the week after school let out. This was a lot earlier than we have done it in a long, long time. We promoted the experience by door hangers (thanks to all who helped), personal invites, post cards from previous events, and for the first time, we used social media advertising.


We had a number of parents who told us they saw our ad on Facebook. The result was we had a total of 57 children register and attend for at least one night. Our high attendance was 49 on Thursday evening when the Gospel was shared. Many parents also heard that presentation. To God be the glory for the seeds that were planted in the hearts of families! Also, we had an average of 53 volunteers who were available to be used to love and lead those children. Thank you to all who assisted!

In June, we also had the great privilege to witness the Baptism of three of our young people. Grace and Ben Bullard, and Audrey Brewer all made their public profession of Jesus. What a great time it is when young people with so much life ahead of them stand and say it is all for Jesus. I pray that you will all walk with Jesus and know the power of His love and forgiveness for your entire lives!

As most of you know, Cindy and I will be taking some time off in July to go with my family to Newfoundland, Canada. My mom was born and raised there, and I was born there and came to Norfolk at the age of two. I am excited to return with my brother and sister for the first time since we were all teenagers. One of the reason I am so excited about this trip is the opportunity to show Cindy where I was born. In 2014 we went to the youth camp at Saranac Lake, NY where I gave my life to Christ. After this trip I can say that I have shared the most important places in my life with the most important person in my life.

As most of you know our Awana Commander stepped down at the end of the Spring term. We have a number of openings for leaders and assistants in Awana. We need the following positions filled: Commander and Co-Commander/Secretary, T&T Girls Director, 2 leaders and 1-2 helpers, Trek Director and leader, and a Cubbies helper. I know many of you are very dedicated to Awana. We cannot do this ministry without solid, committed leadership. If you are interested in any of these positions, please let us know as soon as possible. If we do not have all of these positions filled with trained church members by August 16th, we will not be able to have Awana this fall.

I also want to invite you to join us on Wednesday night in the Summer! We are here! In July and August, we will be enjoying some of the best preachers in Baptist life. As with last year, I purchased the sermons from the SBC Pastor’s Conference and Annual Meeting. The theme for the Pastor’s Conference was based on the B-Attitudes in Matthew 5. There were some tremendous messages and preachers who declared Kingdom Character in a very special way. Also on Wednesday evenings, we are engaging the children in Team Kid, a missions focused children’s education program that helps them to understand God’s work in the world to spread the Gospel in a culturally relevant way. Join us this Wednesday!

I want to encourage you all to continue in your spiritual disciplines over the summer. Spend time in the Word and prayer, be ready to share an encouraging word, invite people to be your guest at church. When you are at the beach or pool, the amusement/water park, camping, or where ever else you may choose to go, share your faith with someone. I have engaged many people on the beach during the summer, and most are very willing to talk and share. Step out and see what God will do!

Have a great Summer,

Michael C. Smith

June 2019

Dear Friends and Fellow Believers,

Here come the high temperatures, long days of sunshine, the end of school, mosquitoes and lawn maintenance. With the changing of the seasons and the coming of summer, many of us will be taking family vacations, trips to the beach or the mountains, going back home to see family, and just taking some time. This month Cindy and I will be traveling to Birmingham for the SBC Annual Meeting with a stop in Easley, SC to see one of Cindy’s lifelong friends.

Summer also brings VBS! This year the ROAR we will hear from the scripture is about the goodness of our God. When life is unfair, scary, changing, sad or good… God is Good! Indeed, our understanding of who God is, is not based on the daily fluctuations or our emotions or circumstances, but on His character and consistent love for us as His children. This year VBS is June 17-21, the week after school ends. This means that we are in go mode right now. The worship center is being decorated, training is taking place and we should all be praying that God will draw a number of families to entrust us with sharing His love with their children.

In light of what we know and learn about God’s goodness in the midst of change, at the end of this month we will say farewell to the Bullard family. Erik, Jenn, Grace, Ben and Abby have made a huge impact here at Restoration, and in the lives of so many. Jenn has served well as our Children’s Ministry Director. Her tireless efforts have blessed us all in so many ways, too many to enumerate. Jamie Starr will be stepping in as our Interim Children’s Ministry Director as we pray about God’s direction for this position. Personally, I will miss seeing Ben and Abby in the afternoons, they give great hugs, and like to play a little office basketball. Grace has been a real blessing to watch in her love for the Lord. I will also miss Erik’s humble spirit and the conversations we have had in the office. Even though Cindy and I have only been here for 15 months, I am so appreciative of this family and all they mean to this church family. It has been a privilege to help lead both Ben and Abby in receiving Jesus as their Savior in the past year. I know that Jesus will be glorified and lifted up in their lives. On June 30, we will be celebrating our love for the Bullard family in a gathering following the morning worship service.

On June 23, we will be celebrating baptism for a number of our children and young people. Many of the children being baptized put their faith in Jesus during last year’s Vacation Bible School. What a joy it is that we are seeing God impacting lives in our church. Cindy accepted Christ as a 9 year-old and has often spoken that her testimony is not what God saved her “out of” but what God saved her “from.” Pray for all of our children, that they will live lives in love with Jesus, His Word and His people. Pray that they will devote their hearts and lives to His pleasure, and that their identity will be firmly established in His sacrificial love for them.

I hope we are all praying for and seeking God’s glory at Restoration Church. We are called to be disciples, and we are called to make disciples. It is my hope that God will draw people from all backgrounds into our church and into our everyday lives to know Jesus as we live for Him and He expresses Himself in us. We are His representatives to a lost and dying world. This week my D-group has been reading 1 & 2 Thessalonians. In 2 Thess. 1:8-9 we are told that those who do not obey the gospel of Jesus will go to an eternity without the presence of God. In context, there is a sense that this was written not as a warning to those who did not believe, but as an inspiration and motivation for those who did. Does the eternal peril of your lost family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, and community members motivate you to boldly share the love of God in Christ Jesus? Be ready and share without fear!

In the bond of Peace,
Michael C. Smith

May 2019

Dear Friends and Fellow Believers,

First. Let me say a BIG THANK YOU! to all of you who prayed, painted, invited, hung door hangers, or did anything to make BIG DAY a success! Easter was a great day at Restoration Church. We showed ourselves that we can rally and create a great environment for worship, fellowship and celebration that is inviting and welcoming to our community! We are meeting to discuss lessons learned and looking to our next BIG DAY this year.

As we move toward a busy summer, I hope all of you continue to pray for our many guests that came to our church for the first time. We have a very active schedule coming up. On May 24th we will have our Breakfast on the Go outreach to Buckroe Point Townhomes, and in June we will all again be on deck for Vacation Bible School! Jenn is enlisting for positions to love on our kids this summer. Please be praying for all that is to come.

As many of you know we have had a number of families to have babies in April, including mine. On April 23rd, Emelia Smith was born, our fourth granddaughter. She weighed in at 8 lbs 14 oz, and measured 20 inches long. We are so happy to have another child to love!

In many ways, I feel like our first BIG DAY event was like having a baby. It is more than the work up for the day, it is an ongoing responsibility.  We employed a number of volunteers for Big Day that we could use throughout the year. Many of the people I talked with after the service and during the amusements commented on how great it was to be greeted as soon as they drove on the property, or before they even walked in the building, many just said how warm and welcoming our church was. I noticed the energy produced by all of us wearing the same t-shirt, and how focused we all were on inviting people, it was a great effort all around.

While we cannot stay at that level of intensity, we do need to continue to be intentional. Please continue to take invite cards and give them out when you can. We can all continue to treat our guests with enthusiasm and genuine care. We can notice areas around our building that need special attention and chip in to see that we are presenting the best possible environment to all who attend our services and activities.

God has given us an eternal purpose to see transformed lives and destinies. Every invite, every kind act, and every ready word of encouragement can lead to a changed life for an individual or family! Remember, “…in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,” 1 Peter 3:15.

We are seeing in the Book of Acts, that God uses His faithful followers to build His church. We are seeing that it takes persistence, boldness and faithful reliance on Him to bring the increase. Our role is clear, we proclaim and pursue relationship as good stewards of the Gospel, and He will draw all unto Him. Thank you for all you do to increase His Kingdom in the hearts of all.

Let’s have the best May ever!

In the bond of Peace,
Michael C. Smith

April 2019

Dear Friends and Fellow Believers,

April is here! This year Easter is at the latest point in the season that it can be. We will be celebrating the resurrection of our Lord and Savior on April 21st. This year we are planning a grand celebration. The Easter BIG DAY Celebration will be an exciting experience for all who participate. We are canceling Sunday School, moving the service to 10 AM, and incorporating many elements for children and families. There will be a drama from our youth and young adults during the service and after there will be an egg hunt, bounce houses, popcorn, cotton candy and hot dogs.

We are going to invite our community to come, hear the Easter story of Christ’s Resurrection and celebrate the life He gives us with friends and family and fun. Through personal invite cards, door hangers, elementary school post cards, and even social media advertising, we are getting the word out to get the gospel out. We are asking you, our members and regular attendees to make this a “Sacrifice Sunday” by being ready to serve our guests with love, a welcoming smile, and a hospitable spirit. We need you to serve in the parking lot, helping our guests to have a pleasant time from the second they drive onto the property. You can serve on a greeting team to help families
get in the building with a warm handshake and a welcoming smile. You may need to help our guests find a restroom, nursery care, or a good seat in the worship center. We need willing members to work with our children’s ministry to organize and run the egg hunt, the bounce houses, and serve our snacks and food to those who come.

On April 14th we will be having a family meeting following our Palm Sunday service to get organized. Plan on staying so that we can be ready for all who God will send us to hear His message of love and experience His community of love at Restoration. Please be praying for this BIG DAY outreach to our city. Pray that God will draw the lost and de-churched to come to Him and to His family with hearts open to His love. Pray that we will be ready, organized and loving. Pray that everyone here at Restoration Church will be willing to serve, share and care for our guests. The staff and Elders are praying that we will “double-in-one-day.” That means we are asking God to see
twice as many people here on Easter Sunday than we do on an “average” Sunday. This means that potentially a hundred more people hearing the Gospel, given the opportunity to change their eternal destiny, and experience the life transforming power of the Holy Spirit. Please be praying, please be willing to serve, and please meet, greet, seat, and treat all of our guest with the love of our resurrected Savior on His BIG DAY!

Contact Kelley or Jenn for more information about how you can serve on a team for this great day of celebration.

Thank you for your faithful prayers and service to the glory of our God and King, Jesus!

In the bond of Peace,
Michael C. Smith


March 2019

Dear Friends and Fellow Followers of Christ,

The months seem to be flying by! It is hard to believe that March is upon us. Before you know it the beaches and pools will be open and the kids will be out of school. Wait a minute! Spring before Summer please?

Oh, OK. This month will be another month of retreats as the young ladies head to the beach and the mature ladies head to Williamsburg.  Last month the men went to the mountains and learned about being spiritual men, while also shooting and throwing things. The young adults went to the mountains and learned about building their lives on the foundation of Christ. What a great time to pull aside from the busyness of life and ministry to seek reconnecting with the Lord and the life He has given us. I pray that all of you who have been or will be on retreat will experience a blessing and move forward in your relationship with Jesus, for His glory and your good.

This month we will be launching a special 4-week study on sharing our faith. For many followers of Christ there is nothing more unnerving than sharing our faith. Many feel that it is scary, intimidating, complicated and relationally risky. However, we can share our faith in a way that is loving, simple, Bible based without having to memorize, and proven to be successful, without being pushy. Sounds great doesn’t it? Sharing Jesus Without Fear is a simple Bible based method of presenting Jesus without force while respecting people and honoring God. We will begin our study on Sunday evening, March 17th at 6:00 PM. Books will be available soon. If you have any questions you can contact me or the church office.

Additionally, Easter is almost as late in the year as it can be. We need to be praying now that God will do a special thing on April 21st. We have fasted, we are still praying, and we are hoping for a great outpouring of His Spirit. We must understand our role in inviting, and even bringing people with us to this special celebration of His Resurrection. Remember what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15:14, “And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain…” (ESV). We believe and know that Jesus was raised, and He is our hope. Ask God to make you sensitive and ready to share your faith with those who need to hear it. He will guide your thoughts and words when you need Him to.

Lastly, I hope that you are as excited as I am about our study in the Book of Acts. As we begin to see the power of the Holy Spirit move on the early disciples and Apostles, we should be encouraged that God is the same today as He was in those days. He wants to do in His church today what He did in His church in that day. Are we truly ready? Have we prayed? Have we confessed? Have we submitted ourselves? Are we truly desiring all that He wants in our church and in our individual lives? Will you pray with me that we will be ready?

Let us seek Him and His glory in His church!

In the bond of Peace,
Michael C. Smith


February 2019

Dear Friends and Fellow Believers,

Happy Anniversary to us! What a blessing it is to celebrate one year of being at Restoration Church. Cindy and I have been so blessed by all of you who have loved and supported us through a very challenging year personally. The sale of our house, the purchase of a new house, moving and all the construction on both ends.

God has been truly better to us than we deserve, thank you God for your mercy!

Here at the church we have been laying the ground work for what we believe the Bible tells us God wants His church to be. From the In Christ series, the Experiencing God Together study, our new discipleship culture, to our new relationship with Buckroe Pointe Apartments and their residents; it has been quite a year. I look forward to see all that God will do in the New Year following our time of calling out to Him this January.

Now we will venture into a series through the Book of Acts. In Matthew 16:18, Jesus says, “I will build my church…” In Acts, we have the foundation of Jesus doing just that. He tells His disciples to wait for the Holy Spirit and they obediently gather and pray together for that very thing. As God empowers His church it boldly proclaims Jesus as the Son of God, the Messiah, and the one who has brought salvation to all mankind, through faith in Him. Starting as a small group and growing to a worldwide church in just a few decades, Acts is the record of Jesus’ work that stands today. His work is not finished! We must learn from Him and His early followers as we will see them
spreading the Spirit empowered message of the Gospel. We will see the church as a community of loving brothers and sisters, a persecuted band of rebels, and as passionate messengers of life giving hope and truth that transforms.

I am anxious to see what God will do in His present church as we look closely at what He did to build His ancient church. Will you journey with me? Will you open your heart to consider what God wants to do in your life as His Spirit comes alive in the messages from the pages of this Book, will you allow Him to do a new thing in your heart and mind and life? He has called you, equipped you with His Spirit that dwells in the heart of all who call Him Lord, and He has prepared works for all of us to walk in them. What a great God we serve.

Thank you for allowing me to serve as your Pastor. It is an honor that I cherish. I pray for all of us that we will experience His presence, His power, and be witnesses to miraculous and marvelous works for which only He can get the glory!

In the bond of Peace,

Michael C. Smith

January 2019

Dear Friends and Family,
Happy New Year!

What lies ahead for you, your family and Restoration Church in 2019?

We are starting the year with 21 days of Prayer and Fasting.

We will initiate our fast on January 6th with the Lord’s Supper, and conclude our fast on January 27th with a fellowship meal following our Sunday worship.

What is our hope for this time of spiritual seeking? It is my hope, as your pastor, that you will first personally hear from God in a powerful way to bring clarity to His love and purpose for you. That you will become aware of His great holiness and our great need for Him, that He will show to you (and to me in my life) areas of your life that need to be confessed and cleansed. Additionally, it is my hope that He will speak to you and bring clarity to your calling as a believer as He uses you to build His church and reach those most desperate for His love. He has given you gifts and wants to manifest His power in your life and ministry every day. Are you open to Him using you in
ways that you are not personally capable of being used, but with the endowment of His Spirit you are capable through Him?

To enhance and encourage our 21 days of prayer and fasting we will be having special times of prayer each week day morning at the church at 7:00 AM. This time will be a time to come together to encourage each other, to hear a devotion from God’s Word, and pray together for our personal walk and our ministry at Restoration Church.

Begin praying now as the time quickly approaches. Ask God to begin to show you what you need to be praying for during this season of prayer. Discern if there is something inhibiting your communication with God. Consider if God is calling you to service in a way that you have never served Him before, including full-time service.

I pray that you, all of you will experience a spiritual breakthrough that will inspire you to follow Him closer, love Him deeper and experience Him in greater power in 2019 than ever before!

Cindy and I wish you all a wonderful and blessed New Year! We look forward to seeing all that God will do for His glory and your good.

In the bond of His Peace,

Michael C. Smith


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Loving Jesus. Loving People. Lives Transformed

508 Fox Hill Road,
Hampton, VA 23669
757-851-3625 – phone
757-851-3629 – fax

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