I realized that I am excited. And that I haven’t felt this way in… awhile. God is on the move and invites us to come along. With new musicians and building improvements, the scent of possibility is in the air. Adventure is one name for this journey; we are called to be part of something much bigger than ourselves and our individual spiritual walks. Together, as a fellowship, we have a role- as an action character with a speaking part- in the kingdom story.
After the Champaign County Christian Healthcare Center fundraising dinner, Jim Linder approached me with an idea. What if CCCHC could make their home at NCF? Could we meet their need for a space of their own, tailored to healthcare providers and patients, as a partnership in ministry? What an exciting idea! Like a shot of adrenaline. A spark of imagination for what could be possible.
Paul and Barnabas proclaimed the good news to the people in Derbe and made many disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch, where they strengthened the disciples and urged them to remain firm in the faith. Acts 14:21-22a (CEB)
Being included in God’s forever family is good news. Holistic healthcare is good news. Jesus’ primary ministries were teaching and healing. As Paul and Barnabas traveled, they did the same. The combination of words and actions that address spiritual and physical needs is powerful. For our building to become a place of healing as well as prayer, worship, and teaching would be a great gift indeed.
What strengthens us as disciples and increases our faith? I have lately been convinced of our need to give to something bigger than our own selves, jobs, homes, and families. Our sense of purpose and meaning is strengthened through service to others. Not just when we have “extra” time, energy, or money. Sacrifice is precious, and in it there is unexpected reward. This seems true not just for individuals, but for churches and organizations as well.
They told them, “If we are to enter God’s kingdom, we must pass through many troubles.” They appointed elders for each church. With prayer and fasting, they committed these elders to the Lord, in whom they had placed their trust. Acts 14:22b-23 (CEB)
Certainly, we have been passing through many troubles. Undoubtedly, there will be more ahead. The joy of our salvation, our inclusion in God’s community, our service to others- that is our strength.
When I look back at the ministries God has enabled us to serve, I am amazed by what God has done through our congregation and our building, and I am excited for what is ahead. The idea of homecoming, for CCCHC was conceived in our fellowship, brings a tingle of anticipation. I invite you to pray for the possibilities. Where is God leading you, leading us, leading these ministries? May we be disciples and elders committed to the Lord, in whom we place our trust. -Renée