As you may know, the church is putting together a picture directory for the members and friends of the congregation. This is a fun time to see how the young children have grown since the last directory as well as the addition of new members. Karen Dobbs is helping to select the pictures in front of the directory that captures something of our life as a congregation. We have many great pictures that have been taken by John Mitchell as well as others who have snapped a picture with their smartphone here and there.
This gets me thinking about what we see and hope to see when we think about the church. In some ways, the physical structure is the church. This is where we meet and it has been an ongoing part of the life of this congregation for nearly 90 years. But of course, the church is not a just building. The church is the people who join together for worship and prayer, to learn and to grow, to connect with others and to be in service to Jesus Christ. But the church is something more than just the people. The church is also a gift from God. We are people that have been formed and shaped by God’s grace and the call to follow Jesus Christ.
Together, we are on a journey to be a different sort of people than we would be on our own. At every baptism and reception of new members, we make the claim to be a community of love and forgiveness, who will proclaim the good news and live according to the example of Christ. With God’s help, we promise to live out our faith in the body of Christ and in this particular congregation by our prayers, our presence, our gifts, our witness and our service, that in everything God may glorified through Jesus Christ. That is a tall order, but it comes to us as a gift from God.
I’m not sure just how to convey all that in a few pictures. It will be fun to see what the directory will look like as a finished project, a snapshot that captures us in a particular moment of time. But the work of making God’s grace visible for all to see will always be a work in progress.
Grace and peace,