Meet JoAnn and Evans Wilkie. The Wilkies have been part of Rocky Creek close to 50 years. Evans became a Christian at the age of 11 due to a 4th grade teacher’s Sunday School lesson and the call of God on his heart. JoAnn also made a decision to follow Christ at the age of 11 when a preacher said, “This is not our home. We have a heavenly home waiting for us. If we never accept Jesus as our personal Savior, we will never see the lights of Heaven.” Having grown up in the Woodruff area, they have seen a lot of change on Woodruff Road and at Rocky Creek over the last 50 years. Observing those changes and hearing the needs presented at church, Evans and JoAnn have spent their lives meeting the needs of others through their ministry at Rocky Creek.
There are different ways to serve in the body of the church, and the Wilkies are leaders who lead quietly. Both Evans and JoAnn have observed the needs and have positioned themselves to step in to meet the needs that are close to their hearts.
The Wilkies are open-armed members of Rocky Creek looking to welcome others into our fellowship. They serve as part of the greeter team on Sunday mornings at the 9:00AM Worship Service in the vestibule. Meeting the needs of those coming to worship, the Wilkies provide an open door and an invitation to be part of what is happening inside the doors of our church. When a member or guest arrives on our campus, Evans and JoAnn welcome others with a smile on their faces and a bulletin in their hands.
While Rocky Creek provides spiritual food for the soul, the Wilkies know that often physical food is a way to minister to others. Meeting a primary need of food or fellowship can often be the catalyst that leads someone to see how much God loves them. Monthly, JoAnn prepares and Evans serves food for two groups at our church – the Overcomers and the Sr. Adults. Both groups have a tender place in their hearts, but JoAnn states the following as her reason to serve our Overcomers, “We decided to serve because it’s a ministry to others, but in serving we are the ones receiving a blessing from that ministry for the past 16 years.”
On Sundays, we often celebrate baptism for those who have made personal decisions to follow Christ. Evans is at church during the week prior to the baptism making sure that the baptismal area is prepared for Sunday’s baptism. On the Sunday of the baptism, JoAnn serves the ladies and girls as they prepare for baptism while Evans serves the men and boys. Both are there to set up the rooms, to provide towels and handkerchiefs, to present the baptismal candidate with a “Made New” T-shirt, and to wash the towels and reset the rooms following baptism. The Wilkies are both teary-eyed and tender toward those they assist on their baptism celebration day.
The Wilkies set a great example of servant leadership. They have seen the needs and have responded. Our desire as a church is to have everyone finding a place of service. In regard to serving at church, the Wilkies would say, “We heard about needs presented at church. When we were asked to serve, we jumped in to fill the need. You are missing a great blessing when you don’t respond to serve because we certainly have been blessed because we volunteered.”