Yesterday had several wonderful and meaningful happenings. A huge distraction was removed when some tweaks were made to the sound system at my 10:30 church and they helped a lot. Still some issues to iron out, but we did have sound and my throat is very happy about that change. As for my musings …
-We had a great time with people responding to the message in my 10:30 church. It was encouraging to see many coming forward for their own needs, for burdens for others and to pray with other people who came forward. I love seeing the altars being used.
-In my 9:00 church the spirit was pretty good and there seems to be more people really engaging during the messages.
-We had at least one new person in attendance at both churches. There was also one person who visited the previous Sunday who returned to the 10:30 church.
-We had a great turnout of people interested in serving in our First Impressions/Greeter ministry in my 10:30 church. The number was much greater than we anticipated and they seemed genuinely excited about the changes that will be taking place.
-We are adding another children’s Small group/Sunday School class to my 10:30 church due to increased numbers. That means some rearranging and sprucing up of some rooms. What a great problem!
-I found myself really struggling with my prayer times this past week. I was constantly being distracted in my thinking. Thankfully I was able to keep coming back to praying. I am also grateful that I am getting more established in some prayer patterns that help keep me focused when I might otherwise get sidetracked or put it off.
-I will be very glad when I get my sermons back to being the same at both of my churches. VBS being at different times in the two churches got that off track back in the middle of July. Two more weeks then I should be back in line. Preaching a different sermon at each church has been mentally tiring for sure. Keeping my thoughts straight (which is always an issue for me) in preparing and especially presenting has taken a lot of focus.
-In my 9:00 church the attendance was outstanding. In my 10:30 church, not so much.
-In my role as chaplain at the local hospital I dealt with another family who lost a loved one this past week. I am honored to be available and able to minister to them, but emotionally that is difficult. Especially when it was not anticipated.
-On Saturday there was an open house celebration for the 60th wedding anniversary for a couple in my 10:30 church. What a great time of celebrating that was and what a great example that is to all of us.
-I will be making another trip to O’Hare this week. This time to pick up my daughter in law and their two youngest kids and then my son. My daughter in law just took our oldest grandson to college and my son just took their next two oldest ones back to Kenya to begin their school year. My son, daughter in law and their two youngest will be in states for another 5 weeks sharing in churches and seeing some family and friends before they head to a new work in another country in Africa.
-During worship yesterday we sang the song “Oceans” by Hillsong. The line “Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders” really got to me yesterday. Thinking of having our family in 3 different countries and the ones in this country being in 4 different states brought new meaning to the idea of borders. I am grateful that they are all serving Jesus and that He loves them and is with them all no matter where they are or what they are facing.
Here’s hoping you are allowing God to pick you up no matter what circumstance you are facing.