How Greater Joy Came to Be

How “Greater Joy” Came to Be:

While matriculating at American Baptist College in Nashville, TN, God began to speak to Pastor Z. about His “Church”. The revelations and inspiration were coming at a furious pace during these days. With prayer and consideration, thinking these truths and were the basis for a book or a sermon series, Pastor Z. faithfully took notes and meditated on what was being shared with him. Little did he know God was giving Him the blueprint for Greater Joy and would be calling him back to San Antonio to organize the church.

Back in San Antonio a short time later, Pastor Z. was naturally struggling with the vision God gave him and seeking direction for what to do next. One Sunday after attending his home Church, Greater Love, Pastor Z. was with wife and family in the car headed home when God clearly spoke to him, instructing him to pay a visit to a local Pastor he had just met weeks before. Here Pastor tells the story in his own words:

“I was leaving Greater Love that Sunday morning and for days had been struggling with what I felt God was telling me to do. My words: “God you cannot be serious, start a church???”. Leaving my home church that Sunday, not 2 miles down the road I turn around and my wife and children were asleep in the car, with only the sound of the wheels thumping on the road echoing in the vehicle. In this moment I clearly heard God tell me to go visit a local Pastor I had met weeks before, Rev. Gary Patterson, Berean Bible Fellowship.

Of course, I argued with God.
 “Why do I need to go see this guy, I barely know him!” I pleaded with God.
 “Go tell him what I’ve told you to do” God spoke clearly.

So I went to Rev. Patterson’s church and as I was pulling up he was walking into his office building and saw me get out of the car and waved me in, almost as if he was expecting me.

I told Rev. Patterson “I don’t know why I’m here telling you this, but God told me to come tell you that He is ordering me to start a church. I know we just met and barely know each other, but I know God told me to tell you that, so there you go.”

Pastor Patterson leaned back in his chair and smiled and said “You don’t know who I am do you?”

“No sir I don’t” I replied.

“I’m the Area Director for New Church Starts for the Baptist General Convention of Texas, I help people start churches. That’s what I do.”

So that is how God divinely instructed and confirmed to Pastor Z. what He was requiring of His servant. Since that day in 2004 people’s lives have been changed, souls have been saved, the Gospel has been preached and God has been glorified.

We are not through by any means, there’s still work to do and it must be done while there is yet day, “…for the night comes, when no man can work.” (John 9:4)

Meaning of the name:
“Greater Joy” comes from 3rd John vs. 4 which reads “I have no greater joy than to know that my children walk in truth.”

Our desire is to, as our mission statement says “Walk in the truth of God’s word”, those truths that convict and sting, as well as those truths that lift us up and encourage us. Any time the word is preached or taught at Greater Joy, you can trust that the standard of the one delivering the word is to be prepared and armed with truth. Each lesson and sermon should be delivered with prayerful consideration to the truth that God seeks to reveal to His children.

Church Inception:
2nd Sunday in August, 2004, in San Antonio, Texas, founded by our Senior Pastor Adam Zarb-Cousin.