Thursday, March 28, 2013

Signs and Raised Feet

When our family met the SPRC (personnel team) of Christ Church on Friday evening March 15, Les shared that he looked over at the parsonage, while we were still checking it out, and saw white smoke come from the chimney. I won't put myself in the same league as Francis, but I too, in times of uncertainty, look for signs. (The rest of the time I am too rational for signs - a weakness or a strength?)

A week prior, as we were presented with this opportunity, and worried about the loss of what is familiar and good, I noticed that the move announcement at Bethany would coincide with my message on the 6th of Jesus' Last Words on Life from the cross: "It is finished". It was a series of messages planned months prior, and, as always, God goes before. "Eben-ezer" (Hitherto has the LORD helped) and "Jehovah-Jireh" (The LORD provides).

Back to Francis and the white smoke...  I love a line from Christopher Lowney's remarkable book, Heroic Leadership: Best Practices from a 450-Year-Old Company that Changed the World. He tells the story of the Jesuits, the "Society of Jesus" (of which Francis is a member). And, he describes the Jesuit calling as "living with one foot raised". Not as Captain Morgan, but as the availability to go anywhere at any time for the mission of Jesus Christ.

Monday, March 25, 2013

On the move to MountainTop

I am reminded of God calling Abram (a.k.a. Abraham): "Go from your country and your kindred and your father's house to the land that I will show you" (Genesis 12.1).  He leaves behind so much, so much that is familiar and good, in order to be obedient in pursuing God.  And, in the process, he is blessed and becomes a blessing to others in ways he could not have anticipated.  That's my prayer for our family, for our churches and communities.

I am reminded of Jesus' instruction to the disciples when they collect the donkey for the ride into Jerusalem.  When asked, "What are you doing, taking my donkey!" -- and I assume it was not a polite question -- they were to reply, "The Lord needs it."  Our part is to say "yes", pack our bags, and step out on a new adventure.  God goes before us to prepare the way.  Please join us in prayer.  (And help pack, or unpack, depending on which end of this adventure we meet you!)

The announcement of our pending move, shared at Bethany Church on Sunday March 17
The announcement of Bethany's new pastor, shared at Bethany Church on Sunday March 24