This past weekend was a good time to revisit a previous teaching series to see if what we said we should be as a church is actually who we are becoming as a church. Are we staying connected to God? Are we doing all we can to connect with others? And, are we helping to connect others to God?
In revisiting “This Is Who We Are”, we are looking at ourselves with an eye to see how we can be the church God has called us to be as we go forward in this new journey as Lake Community Church. We looked at the events in the Apostle Paul’s 2nd Missionary Journey ( a revisit ) and saw how his life, in the midst of not being allowed to do what he wanted, but instead, seeking God’s plan…impacted the life of Luke. We also were introduced to Lydia, a worshiper of God who did not have a relationship with God until her heart was opened to hear the Gospel from Paul.
Both of these instances are used to encourage us as we become the church. When we listen to God’s plan for us, by being connected to God through a relationship we have received through our belief in Jesus Christ, and live out that life for others to see the Gospel alive in us, we will experience people’s lives being changed; all in the presence of other believers and supporters of our journey, our mission. But, what happens when our beliefs are not welcomed; when the Gospel we share ignites folks to retaliate against us? Will we remain steadfast in our belief; in the Gospel; in being the church?
In Acts 16, starting at verse 16, you can read about an event where Paul frees a young girl from being a slave to demons and her owners, and he and Silas were both beaten and thrown in jail because they had caused the girl’s owners to lose money and they were different; different customs and a different life-style. If we were to be thrown in jail for being different, for being a Christian trying to help people with the love of Christ alive in us; would we remain faithful to the call; still running to the cry; still focused on the vision and the mission we have been called to…being the church?
When we personally consider this situation Paul and Silas are in, and how we might respond…reading the passage from verse 25-40 becomes very interesting indeed. (Here’s a little hint to help…Connecting with God…Connecting with others…Connecting others to God)