I have often referred to “The Church on the Hill” building of a new worship space for our community as our “project”. What has become clear to me throughout the Capital Campaign is that we are setting out to accomplish much more than a construction project build of man-made materials. As slow and painstaking as it is in our human time, undertaking this planning, designing and fundraising process allows God’s people of St. Peter’s to experience another kind of growing opportunity. We must allow our Lord to accomplish HIS goal of transforming US into the people here that He wishes us to become. Perhaps within this important work, WE are the real Project! The recent design overrun has caused us to go back to the drawing board and re-structure the plan. This is an opportunity for us, too!
Just as He allowed the Hebrew nation under Moses time in the desert to shape them into His People, and the exiles under Nehemiah time to rebuild the temple walls and themselves in the process, I believe the Lord is working on each of us to bring us to a new relationship with each other and with Him. From the beginning we have called ourselves St. Peter’s. I am reminded of this scripture from Matthew 16:18, “You are [St.] Peter and on this rock I will build my Church and the gates of hell will not stand.” We cannot take this charge to our namesake lightly.
I truly believe that we are called to build here on several different levels.
• Individually, we continue to grow and be transformed into His likeness.
• Collectively as St. Peter’s Church, we identify and serve needs within the community.
• As THE Church, we join with worldwide Christians for the sake and spread of the Kingdom of God.
• We eagerly expand our worship and gathering space to welcome others into our fellowship.
Building a new worship space cannot be our single focus. It must be accomplished in unison and in cooperation with all of our people and amidst all of our existing ministries and service. These are not mutually exclusive but are part of the balance that we all apply to our everyday lives. Should we say, “I support one ministry but not another?” Do we break apart the church body and draw lines of division over mission, fellowship or discipleship differences? Never. One of our previous building campaigns was called, “Building Together”. Well said! We must always seek to find consensus and points of agreement, aligned with the heart of Jesus Christ.
Since our current space does not support growth, who will join us in the mission field? As we seek to offer others opportunities to serve, where will we draw them into? When does the Lord say to limit His reach and His ingathering of His people?
I jotted down these “take aways” from a recent sermon. Did they speak to you also?
• The Lord drives out the “Life Lie” so we can become what He calls us to be. (Jeremiah 1: 4-10)
• “Be all that you can be for the Lord.” “Go about doing good.” “Liberate all who are oppressed.”
Will you join me as I seek continual “fashioning by the Master’s loving hand”? Each of us has our own role, yet in unity we serve and accomplish great things for His Glory.
“Grant, O merciful God, that your Church, being gathered together in unity by your Holy Spirit, may show forth your power among all peoples, to the glory of your Name.” – Collect of the Day: August 21, 2016
In His Service,