unstuck

I went back and forth on whether or not to write this post today. But, I feel I have learned so much recently and I am hoping these truths speak to you as well.

I have been a member at Grace Fellowship since I was in 6th grade (so let me do the math)…. that’s 18 plus years.  I love this church. This is where my children go to school. This is where my husband works. This is where many of my dear friends are. This is where my family is. I love serving here. I love worshipping here. I love learning here. It’s my community.

Our church has gone through some major transitions the past couple years. One major one is the search for a new senior pastor. (Our previous pastor felt a calling to pursue church planting full time with The Timothy Initiative).

This morning we found out that the man we thought was supposed to be our next pastor is feeling led in a different direction now. It was discouraging to hear that at first. Our entire body was pumped that we were going to have that role filled and now it seems we are back at square one.

Immediately I started to fear how everyone was going to react. I thought of our elders and leaders who have been trying to keep the church running these past years and how discouraged they must feel. I started to worry that many attenders were going to leave our church and go somewhere else. I even wondered if some people were going to give up on church in general.

I actually got so upset about it, I find myself in tears. And while I am so happy that the pastor did what he felt he needed to do (we would never want someone here that doesn’t feel called to be here), it still was sad for some reason.

I think it’s because I felt like we were just stuck.

Then.. God laid something on my heart… a verse I had read earlier this week (it’s funny how He does that).

It was from Hebrews 10:24-25

Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.” 

I thought about our church and it’s current situation. While we still need to praying fervently for our Senior Pastor role to be filled with the right man, we don’t have sit still. We don’t have to be stagnant. We don’t need to be just “waiting” to do what God has called his body of believers to do.

A church is not built on a pastor or a man (and thank God, because we as humans are flawed).  A church is a community of people who want to grow, fellowship, worship, and serve our Heavenly Father. It’s God’s church.

I have talked with some people recently who have decided to withdraw from “organized religion” or perhaps they find themselves going to several churches simultaneously, 0r they still attend our church (but they just come to service and leave). In doing so, they’ve adopted a “just Jesus and me” approach to the church. But that’s not Biblical. (And disclaimer, this is not a slam to anyone who has decided to change churches at some point in their life. I think there are times when that is needed, so please don’t misunderstand)

I am not really talking about “where” you go… I am talking about us needing to be consistently fellowshipping with a local body of believers. Getting to know others and allowing them to truly know you back. Create vulnerability and accountability. Confessing to one another. Really learning to love and serve each other. That’s how we make the greatest impact on each other and on the world!

God designed us to live that way, so just like that verse said lets continue to meet, encourage, and build each other up.

Maybe God is also using this time to lead some of us to step up. If you see there is a need for a ministry, step up and lead it! God gives us all different gifts. Maybe He is calling you to use yours now.

My hubby and I started a small group for young families a couple years back. We aren’t the most qualified.. and we definitely haven’t done a perfect job by any means… but we felt there was need for it. I am so glad we took that step of faith, because those relationships are some of the most precious ones we have in our lives.

God is in control and has a plan, no doubt. And one of my favorite verses in 2 Corinthians rings true during this time…

2 Corinthians 4:17

“For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!”

Praying that this time will produce a huge growth for our church and also for each of us personally.

I know I have already learned so much through this experience.

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Comments

  1. Carrie Valilulis says:

    You are amazing and I thankyou for sharing!! It takes courage!! Way to go!!

  2. Julie Floyd says:

    Hi Jenny!
    Yes this is just another hurdle our flock WILL get through. Especially for those of us who are anchored to The Rock.
    I have to be honest: since the death of my Becky, I have been in a battle zone with God.
    The depths of my despair have me questioning DEEPLY, all I’ve faithfully believed for decades.
    Yet, no matter how disconnected I feel or have become, I have an inner sense of belonging to “this family of God!”
    I know there is a time coming, when I feel, as you said, called to “step up” and serve. I’d like to canvas our entire church family to find all those who have lost children. There may be none other, who had the tragic loss like we did. But, parents who have lost a child know a type of sorrow that no one else can.
    I am NOT doing a “good job” handling it, as I was initially.
    I can turn into a mess of tears just thinking of how soft her skin was to hug.
    It tears me up, knowing Capri missed her & has no Mommy.
    (Yes, I then think, “Even JESUS was allowed to have a Mommy!)
    This too shall pass.
    I know.
    This church body IS our family though.
    With or without a Lead Pastor.
    In smooth or rough seas…..this is where to set anchor.
    The RIGHT man will be called, while we wait again …….

  3. Jim Meldrim says:

    Jenny,
    Thank you for such an amazingly hopeful and biblical insight! I love the hope you express and the ministry you have to other young couples. They are truly blessed to have you in their lives.

  4. EliZabeth blonde says:

    Thank you Jenny for sharing this today. It’s amazing that you had some of the same thoughts I have had! God knew this church would be going through this and it is Christs church and we are responsible for being good stewards of what we have and to follow His will whether a pastor is there or not. I pray that the church is moved to action in this time of uncertainty and that we can Glorify our Lord with out thoughts, actions and words! I pray the elders, leaders, pastors,staff and members are sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Thank you for sharing. I am blessed to by you and this community we are a part of!

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