This Sunday Morning Update is more than an Update. It’s also an invitation to our Farewell Potluck for Richard, Vanessa, and Donna League!
Since Richard was forced to re-consider his whole career path, thanks to Caterpillar’s financial problems, the whole family will be moving soon to go out West. Now, they aren’t all heading out this week, but they are heading out soon, and we wanted to make sure that we could spend some time loving on them well and letting them know how much we appreciate the 28 years of dedicated love and friendship that they’ve invested into our church family here at First Covenant. So please come join us for worship and then lunch after the service this coming Sunday, March 19, for a special time of appreciation for our departing Elder and his family. If you can’t bring any food, then please just bring yourself -- but if you can bring food, then please just contact the church office to ask what we still need.
In the service this week, we welcomed Paul Larson and Erika Agans into official church membership. As we always explain to people, membership isn’t about gaining special privileges or becoming a Christian or anything like that -- it’s rather declaring that this is someone’s church family, where they’re sinking their roots relationally and spiritually, and where they commit themselves to making a difference in the lives of other family members. It’s the difference between only dating a church (or, let’s be honest, just kind of flirting with it) and truly being engaged.
Actually, we talked a little bit about that in our message this week. So many of us tend to think that we can be Christians without truly engaging ourselves with God’s plans for us. Now, I’m not just talking about people who just sit on the sidelines and do nothing -- I’m also talking about those of us who are actively involved in ministries, even full-time. Because the issue isn’t always that we aren’t doing stuff -- the issue can also be that we aren’t letting God use us the way(s) that He desires us to be used.
For instance, the disciples had been out and about, sharing the Gospel, performing miracles, and casting out demons -- they’d been totally doing stuff (even really impressive stuff) for God. But when Jesus asked them to perform the specific miracle of feeding a multitude, they were confounded, because they didn’t believe that it could be done. They’d done miraculous things, they’d seen Jesus do it, but they were still unwilling to truly let God work His will in and through them, because it didn’t match up with their own expectations.
Fortunately, God’s patience is much, much greater than our patience for one another. He’s not prone to giving up as easily as we are, and He keeps giving us the opportunity to change and to grow and to make the decision to do the hard things, even if we’ve dropped that ball several times before. Don’t be surprised if you keep facing the same hardships and conundrums over and over in life, because it might just be God giving you another chance to do it right this time.
So what is God telling you that He wants you to do?
Don’t just assume that action equals obedience -- stop and listen to His will for you, and walk in it.