The prophet Malachi records in 3:6 that God said “I the Lord do not change.” However we seem to always live with change and at FCC we continue to be in a season of change. Hopefully each one of us, on our “good days,” are growing and changing to be more like Him. Hopefully we are seeing the choices of life that are before us, and choosing, as He would have us chose, to live.
I have been thinking a lot about what it was like for the disciples after Jesus had died and was resurrected but they still did not know how they were going to live forward without Him. Jesus had told them to go to Jerusalem and to wait. He had told them to wait there until they received the gift of the Holy Spirit. They had not yet received the gift of the Holy Spirit, they didn’t even know what this “gift” was. This was a time of much unknowing and I think it is something we can learn a lot from as we continue in our own time of transition.
Watching with the disciples (all the followers of Jesus), we can truly learn from them. The first thing they did was that they stayed together. Jesus had led them, he had taught them, and he had united them and they stayed together waiting as he had instructed them to do (Acts 1:12,13) They “hung in there”. I’ll bet they stayed together remembering what Jesus had told them, the work He had done while He was with them, they probably comforted each other and I bet they began to watch for this promised “gift”. They anticipated, looked expectantly, for what God was going to do.
The second thing the disciples did, that and we can learn from, is that they prayed together (verse 14). Jesus had taught them to pray, He knew they would need to know how to pray by themselves, and so He modeled prayer and He gave them a prayer to pray. The text says they were “constantly in prayer”, the disciples, and the women, along with Jesus’ brothers. Can you imagine what they prayed about? Think of the questions that are on your mind today. We are all human, and we all wonder and question. Our questions today probably have a similar tone to the questions the disciples asked and prayed about.
The third thing we can realize that the disciples did was that they reasoned it out. They read the signs as Jesus had taught them and they reasoned out what to do. They remembered what God had said would happen, and how it had happened, and they came up with a plan. They trusted God. They trusted the God who had led them through the wilderness, provided manna, brought them to safety, and now was leading them again.
Here at FCC we are acting in much the same way. We are continuing to meet together. We are continuing to worship, serve, learn, comfort and reach out to our neighbors. We are watching and we are actively waiting for God’s direction. We are praying. We are talking to God about His desires for us individually and for us collectively.
Our Transitional Team of Pastor Marco, Pastor John and I are meeting together in longer sessions to pray and to “reason together” as we move forward. I am meeting individually with Pastor Danny, Pastor Calvin, Pastor Sid, Pastor Chamron, and Jon Blankmeyer to hear their hearts and to support their strong ministries. Our Staff, and our support staff, are working together in a variety of ways as we seek to be faithful to God’s ministry initiatives. The Nominating Committee is in direct communication and they are working diligently to bring forth a strong set of Lay Leaders to add to the strong leaders who are currently serving well.
I am humbled and proud to tell you that FCC is healthy and growing. I am humbled because, like the first disciples, I know what I don’t know. I know that I have to wait upon God and that it is He that knows the best path forward for us. I am proud because I see that we, like the disciples, are united and prayerful. We continue to see God at work and we are expectant that He is bringing us more ways to partner with Him as He brings His kingdom “here as it is in Heaven.” These are good days but I am confident that even better days are ahead of us.
I, and the rest of our staff and leadership, welcome your partnership in prayer, in questions, and in engaging fully in what God has for us at FCC.