I was 17 years old, had been a high school graduate for 2 weeks, and the camp preacher (a former NFL player) preached on Peter “making his break”—stepping out of the boat and into the call of God, no matter the unknown.
That’s when God called me to preach.
God didn’t make it audible, but I heard it, nonetheless.
However, that’s a personal story. A church can’t experience anyone’s personal story, but they can take part in God’s story through time… through the church.
Today’s milestones of Pastor’s retirement, our 34th year since chartering, and the transition of pastors is not about a man, or men, or people at all. It’s not even about the milestones, as memorable as they may be.
It’s all about God. It’s all about HIS story of HIS creation that WE messed up through sin. It’s about how HE stepped into time and made a way to be right again—to get back to how He designed it—through Jesus Christ.
And God’s church is the pillar and ground of that truth. It’s never been about man. It’s always been about God.
Because of that, today’s not going to be a spectacle about men, but a worship service to glorify God. It will feel like most other weeks of church—singing, praying, bowing, giving, and preaching.
A mark of a healthy church is its people. Even on a special day like today… are we coming as consumers or worshipers?
Worshipers gather to worship God. If you’re a worshiper, you have a part in church, and you are disappointed if you didn’t have the opportunity to express to God that you love and worship Him.
Consumers gather for the show. While consumers look for what they can get, worshipers come to “Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.” (Psalm 29:2)
Everyone comes to a day like today with their own ideas of how it should go. Some want more; some want less. We really tried to be sensitive to the Lord in determining how much to emphasize “honour to whom honour” (Romans 13:7) and “Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine.” (1 Timothy 5:17)
I believe we are right in line with Scripture to both celebrate our history and express our thanks to the people God has used to shepherd our church over the past three decades.
As we go into today, remember that God is the focus.