Meet Ebenezer Baptist Church’s Family and Worship Pastor Benjamin DeCou.
Brother Ben is a hometown boy, born and raised right here in Jackson Parish. His parents, Bill and Betty DeCou, are well known here for their work in education as well as their lifelong commitment to serving as deacon and music director at First Baptist Church in Jonesboro.
Ben was groomed to be a minister of music before he even realized what God was doing. He sang specials, both solos and with the choir, and he played different instruments including the piano, guitar, and drums. This was to prepare him for music ministry in which he was called at an early age.
However, Benjamin decided to go to school in music and received degrees in music performance and music education, which led to him being a public-school choir teacher and part-time music minister. As time went on, he could not avoid the calling to get equipped at seminary and become a full-time worship pastor.
Though teaching in the school setting is a gift and a calling that Benjamin has enjoyed in his life, he can assure all that there is such a peace that comes from surrendering completely to the calling that God has given you with serving in His Kingdom.
In April of 2021, Ben moved back to North Louisiana with his wife Heidi and their three college-aged children Michael, Madison, and Jonathan to serve as Family and Worship Pastor for Ebenezer. In addition to Ben serving, Heidi is also a pianist/vocalist for our Praise and Worship team and Michael, Madison, and Jonathan sing or play instruments as part of the team also when they aren’t attending church in their college towns.
When asked what his favorite bible verse is, Ben responded that Colossians 3:16 is also his focal verse for music ministry. Here, Paul tells the church at Colossae to “Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”
This is a wonderful verse within a powerful chapter and letter that explains what it looks like to have the new life that is brought about in accepting Jesus as Lord and Savior. The precious, inerrant Word of God should fully reside in and freely overflow from the life of the new creation who has been transformed by Christ. This allows for teaching, correcting, and even singing God’s Word in all manner of songs with a spirit of thankfulness for all that God has done.
With such a wide variety of music that includes interests that vary and fluctuate in each genre, it is very difficult for Benjamin to label one worship song as his favorite. However, songs that would be considered his favorite would meet these qualifications:
-that which communicates the truth of God’s Word
-that which musically expresses the text well
-that which allows for the average church member to sing along easily
-that which possesses a musical, exceptional, and aesthetic appeal to it.
If there was one thing that Benjamin would share with others about Ebenezer, it would be the personality of the church. Because of our leadership and the great men and women of faith at Ebenezer, the church has a personality or spirit that can be described as kind and authentic. Ebenezer is a kind church where all are welcomed by compassionate and humble people who will genuinely show the love of God in their lives. It is also an authentic church that has determined under the conviction of the gospel to not entertain the masses with ear-tickling preaching and music driven by emotionalism and presentation, but it is rather a church who seeks to diligently disciple the true followers of Christ with expositional preaching and gospel-centered singing that involves the mind and the spirit of each believer in Christ.
The most joy that Benjamin receives from serving at Ebenezer is twofold. It is a wonderful blessing for any Worship Pastor to serve at a church like Ebenezer where there is a love to sing the old and new worship songs and where there is a desire to have a choir and praise band assist in leading worship. This is a wonderful sign of maturity and selflessness in the church that is sorely needed in the universal Church. The second part of what brings Benjamin the most joy is the fact that Ebenezer lives up to her motto: a family of families.
Ebenezer Baptist Church is truly blessed to have Brother Ben and his family serving and standing as great examples of how God uses an entire family to minister and share His word.
(reprint from Ebenezer Baptist Church Facebook post on March 29th, 2023)
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