Going through the motions

This weekend Diane and I went to church somewhere else.  I spent the weekend with some other pastors and their spouses at Canaan Valley.  There was a pastor there that I don’t know, but I know of.  I came home and checked the UMC conference journal and found out that he will be 62 next month.  He has served the same church in a rural West Virginia community for the last 10+ years.  And as I sit in my office and reflect on the weekend, I can’t help but wonder how he feels about his last 9 years as a pastor.  This is on my mind because, Lord willing, I will be his age in 9 years and I will have been pastor here at Wesley Chapel Short Gap for 11 years.  And that day will be here in the blink of an eye.

In his book Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire Jim Cymbala writes,

“I despaired at the thought that my life might slip by without seeing God show himself mightily on our behalf…I longed and cried out for God to change everything – me, the church, our passion for people, our praying.  One day I told the Lord that I would rather die than merely tread water throughout my career in the ministry… always preaching about the power of the Word and Spirit, but never seeing it.  I abhorred the thought of just having more church services.  I hungered for God to break through in our lives and our ministry.”

How many church people and pastors spend their entire lives arguing over things that make no difference?  How many people go through life just trying to maintain the status quo?  And this isn’t just a reflection for pastors.  Do you want God to show Himself mightily in your life?  Do you hunger for God to break through in your life?  Or are you satisfied that you have enough of Him in your life?

It’s going to take more than going to church (all the time of half the time).  It’s going to take more than complaining about the way things are or lamenting for the way things used to be.  It’s going to take prayer.  It’s going to take humility.  It’s going to take risk.  Are you willing to call out to Him, asking Him to change everything, including you?

“Lord, I want to dance with the Holy Spirit”.

And I want to look back one day and say, it’s been a great dance.




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