It has been a fantastic weekend. Saturday night my home was full of believers – serious followers and disciples of Jesus. By 6:30 the kitchen and front room were full to overflowing with people, young and old. And, there was life – the rooms were alive with people talking, sharing, laughing, eating… Of course, it really all began at 5:00p when a dedicated group showed up and prayed for an hour in the same rooms asking God to bless and for His presence to be felt. By 10:00p most were gone but there was still a group in the kitchen talking intensely… Way to go APEX – tremendous second service and, as one of the leaders, I am seriously encouraged. We are moving forward in God’s plan for us and, like Moses in Exodus 33, His presence is very real and is with us.
Sunday I was with a tremendous group of faithful believers at New Hope where we have seen God do so much over the past years. We are preparing for a wonderful launch of the next step in our walk together with the Lord. We are close to opening our own “church home” and leaving the rented facilities that has been our home for a good number of years. A while back we chose a new name – New Hope – and that is what we are offering to the community we are located in and those who live in the many communities in the area … new hope that is found only in Jesus. Our worship was honoring to God, God’s Word was preached and received into the hearts of the people, and the fellowship was good with many taking the time to share with others and pray together. It is worth the 520+ Km of driving to be a part of this vibrant family of believers.
Meanwhile three of our world-wide family of disciples were killed in an attack on a church in Kenya as they worshipped (BBC News – Sunday at 9:00a); believers in many countries are meeting to worship in underground churches because it is illegal to be a born again believer in their nations; in many nations meetings are held in buildings that would be condemned here in North America as unfit for habitation; people are being saved minute-by-minute in tens of thousands of house churches in Muslim nations … the Kingdom is healthy and expanding. Peoples lives are being altered and the history of many nations is being written in the blood of believers who are dying for their faith.
But, many sit in comfort in warm, modern buildings where the coffee corner is superior to Starbucks both in looks and in coffee available, sanctuary seats are padded and comfortable, the worship is of high quality using all of the best equipment available (with few really engaging in worship), and the Word is taught to people who will do little to nothing with it – lives will not be transformed. I am uncomfortable with the massive difference and the apparent indifference.
In my mind, there is a massive disconnect as we all belong to the same Kingdom and worship the same King. I am praying that God will continue to shake His Church and that believers will come to realize that they have “family” in every nation as they reach out to help their brothers and sisters… no longer able to simply ignore those whom we could help if we so desired.