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By Truman Smith. Photos by Win Grant.

Paul Bickford’s beginnings at FBC included volunteering to assist David Powers with the Television Ministry. Growing up with no church involvement, how unlikely to begin working with the minister who would become his spiritual mentor. This had not been in Paul’s plans or dreams for his future. His University of Miami studies included double majors, Film and Computer Science. He could not have guessed that an opportunity to learn television directing was evolving. But Paul says: “Unbeknownst to me, God planted a passion for visual story telling in me that He would use later.” Paul started out doing anything that David asked him to do. When he was offered opportunity for hands on learning, Paul was ready for this new role. He is now one of the directors, often in the control room on Sunday morning.

Paul came to FBC in 1997 after his girlfriend let him know that church was a vital part of her life. Paul shares that she “was always inviting me to come to church with her. Finally, our relationship matured to a point where she had to clearly lay out the path she was taking versus the path I was taking.” He took the hint and showed up without telling her. Engagement to Alexa followed, and they were married in 1999. It could be said that the rest is history, but there is more to Paul’s story.

Paul Bickford directing Sunday morning worship services.

Work in the TV ministry opened to Paul new ways of thinking about life and what is really important. He became aware of a new spiritual dimension that had been missing. Friendships, worship and ministry all came together with clearer purpose. In late 2001 and January 2002 Paul made concrete what had been growing in his heart and spirit. The music and Dr. Flamming’s preaching on sacrifice and tithing helped him realize it was time to make public the commitment of his life to Christ. His assignments with the TV ministry now became, “Here I am Lord.” The Sunday morning TV congregation is very important to him. He knows that many depend on the televised service for their worship, comfort and spiritual nurture, “helping to provide this is my calling,” he says.

During the week Paul works for Apex Systems, Inc. He has been with them since 1999 and is now their Director of Enterprise Systems. In his office he has a calendar with a spiritual thought for the day that often gives the right word to guide and focus him on what is truly important. While giving time and energy to doing his job well, his life as husband, father and God’s servant is the core of who he is. In March of 2010 Paul joined the Ministry Planning Team, a group that receives ideas to help the FBC family find new ways of bringing heaven to earth.

The Bickfords, Paul, Alexa and their three sons, are part of the Kingdom on earth, still growing into what God intends.

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