Well, this is the first blog of the new year and a lot has happened. We have voted to sell our building, we have moved our schedule and we have no idea what all the Lord has in store for us. I guess as we begin this year I want to begin with a story and then lay out a few truths.
Around three years ago I sat across from a man at lunch and he said to me, “With the direction we are going, if someone held a gun to my head and told me to tell them if Trinity would be around in 6 months, I would tell them 'no.'” Now, I am happy that no one did put a gun to his head and I imagine three years later he is also…but I play that conversation in my mind very often. In fact, I have played that conversation many times over in my mind the last several weeks. To say that the Lord has protected us, undergirded us and shown us favor is still an understatement. But there are some things we would do well to remember during this transition. I will only list a few, but these few are important.
- We serve a Big God: Even when we do not see His hand, we can rest assured He is working for our good and His glory.
- Striving to “Do Church” Biblically Is Tough: In the American culture with the attitude of “live and let live,” it causes great struggle in the American church. It is messy and it is uncomfortable, but it is biblical to walk with others, confront with truth and grace and stand faithfully on the Word.
- Unhealthy doesn’t turn to healthy overnight: It takes the Spirit working through the Word in the hearts of people to strengthen a church. Trinity is far from what we are going to be, but praise God we are not what we used to be. It wasn’t until this year (year five) that I really saw any signs of health. Now, the goal to be a God-honoring church is something that I believe we genuinely want and are working towards.
- Expository Preaching is healthy food: Many believers raised in much of what is called “church” today are happy hearing “7 Ways to be a better….” They are not accustomed to walking through the Word of God and what it says, verse by verse. The Word of God cuts, it convicts and it makes my flesh uncomfortable, but it must be preeminent.
- The Kingdom is so much bigger than Trinity: God is forcing us to look at more than just ourselves, even more than missions. As we will worship alongside another congregation in sometimes crowded spaces, we will have to learn to “wash feet” and to prefer others. This is very easy to preach but very tough to practice.
- Relationships are mandatory: We must live our Christian life in community. God never created us to be isolationists, we are called to do all these “one another” things in the Word and it begins in our congregation. I have all these people in church that are not like me: some are older, some are younger, different backgrounds, different preferences, and we live out life beside one another for the glory of God. The way we love each other is the greatest testimony to a lost and dying world.
There are many other lessons that I am sure we will deal with in the coming months. Thanks for your commitment to staying in the Word and staying faithful at Trinity. The blog will be back up and running through this new year and will hopefully be one more way to keep in touch with what is going on and what changes are happening. I pray that we at TBC are committed to Hold To Truth!