Yesterday was another beautiful Sunday and quite a pleasant surprise for the last Sunday of January. As for my musings …
-Yesterday marked my 4th anniversary as pastor of this church. The contrast in weather between the two Sundays is staggering. Yesterday it was pleasant, sunny and in the 40s. 4 years ago the weather was about 40 degrees colder and the ground was covered in snow several inches deep.
-One thing was still the same as it was 4 years ago. The people were wonderful then and they were just as wonderful yesterday.
-One major difference from 4 years ago was that there are many more people in attendance and a lot more children. Another noticeable difference is who was missing. We have lost several great people, to death (especially in the past year), who were here 4 years ago.
-Our time of music went well yesterday, and when you consider that 2 of the 3 (my wife was one of those) on the worship team were battling bad colds, it was even more impressive.
-There seemed to be a very good spirit throughout the worship service.
-Last Wednesday night we had 24 children attending our ministries and 6 youth. That is huge for us and those numbers were not imaginable 4 years ago. There were also 27 adults here last Wednesday evening.
-Last week I did not have a funeral, nor did I have a wedding!
-This week begins another Fatherhood class (24/7 Dads) at the prison. These are powerful, and meaningful, groups that I have the privilege to help lead.
-The volleyball teams I help coach had a tougher week. One of them went 2-1 and the other went 1-2. They are 6-1 and 5-2 on the season.
-3 families started a journey last week to change the legacy of their families. They were part of a Financial Peace class that started last Wednesday night.
-On my day as Chaplain at the local hospital last week, I once again prayed with, and ministered to, a family that was with a dying parent.
-This coming Sunday we are going to finish the current sermon series “What’s Your Why?”. This week we will be celebrating our why. Part of our celebration will be sharing communion together.
-“…As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” In John 20:21, Jesus said this to his disciples on one occasion when he appeared to them after his resurrection. That phrase has been echoing in my heart and mind the past 2 weeks. Trying to understand what it means to be sent. Coming to grips with the statement that I am sent in the same way that Jesus was sent by the Father. That is a staggering realization. I tried to convey this as part of my sermon yesterday. I fell woefully short in my attempt, but I am still working to practice this regularly in my life personally.
-Easter is just over 2 months away.
-Have you noticed how many messages in our media, in advertising, television shows and movies, send poor messages about having healthy relationships?
-I was recently given a book. It was an unusual book in that the main character was a pastor. It was a fiction book, but it touched on many real issues that a pastor, and family, faces. I want to thank my friend for sending it to me. Part of the struggle this pastor was dealing with was trying to live as one who is passionately following Christ and showing Christ to people around them and challenging their church to do the same. The personal part of living as a representation of Christ is difficult and attempting to guide, and challenge, others to do the same creates tension. The author of the book did a good job of capturing the tensions this creates in person, their family and their church family.
Here’s hoping you find ways to show Jesus to those around you this week. In loving, compassionate and meaningful ways.