Joel & Debbie Banham
- Our Local
- Our Reach
- Our Self
Joel and Debbie Banham serve in Plains, Montana, an area that has changed over the years from a rural, transient community to mainly a retirement community. While some of the families there are long-time locals, most are transplants from surrounding communities. It is difficult to make a living in this area due to a lack of available jobs, causing many of the previously prevalent families to move towards bigger towns and cities.
The community mainly has a conservative feel, especially politically. There are many residents who feel distant from the gospel for one reason or another, and are hesitant to accept religion or take part in a church community. The need for healing due to hard experiences in church soon after conversion is present for many locals.
The world has become weird and unfamiliar to many of us as we move into new uncomfortable realities. Suicide has risen so much in our county and people's real and felt needs for security are no longer a reality for many. Ministry is everywhere, but so is strange embracing of false spiritual realities that would not even have been thought of or considered a few years back. Ministry can be overwhelming because it's like we're all in an earthquake together and the terra firma we're used to is constantly shaking at different quake levels. We believe this is just the start of separating those who will continue to build their lives on the Rock and those who will look for other promises of security and hope. It's been a testing time for us...We read Scripture more than ever, but still struggle to really trust and believe. The idea of the Lord's return is a hope that is growing stronger than sanity in our political systems.
The Banhams have served as InFaith associates since 1988.