The Witness – March 29 – April 12, 2015

 

Bittersweet!

I am excited! There is a lot going on this week and in the weeks to come. So please find a way to participate and join the fun and excitement.

Sunday will be a bittersweet day. We will have mixed feelings. There will be tears and smiles, sadness and joy as we say farewell to this building and journey forward.

I can only imagine that the emotions of those who moved from the original building to the one we have worshiped in since 1950 are similar to ours. I also imagine we all had similar purposes for building new accommodations: The present facilities were not adequate to meet the challenges of the day; The movement of the Holy Spirit in our midst led to the construction of a new building; Perhaps what weighed most heavily was the desire to effectively reach people with the gospel in our families and communities.

The building will not determine how effective we are in reaching people with the gospel. It will only be a tool. I pray that we use this tool and reach out in ways that we have never reached out in the past.

No need to wait, begin that outreach this Sunday. We have sent out personal invitations to over 2,000 households inviting them to join us on campus in searching for Easter eggs. Come, meet new friends and share a part of your Sunday!

We Labor Together With God, Wes

The Witness – March 22-28, 2015

Changes Ahead

What a powerful title, “Changes Ahead.” Perhaps what causes the most anxiety about change is, uncertainty. We go to great effort to thwart change, especially as we get older and become friends with, routine. However, change seems unimpressed with all of our efforts. For the more energy we expend in our feeble attempt to keep change from happening, the faster the pace.

As we move onto our new campus the pace of change will only increase. For, when we are finished changing, we are finished. No doubt there will be need for adjustment as we familiarize ourselves with a new place, new building, & new spaces. This is the perfect time to embrace new ways, new people, and begin new habits.

It is in times like these when many changes are taking place that God is able to accomplish many good things in our midst. It’s not so much that God has been unable, it’s just that we haven’t been open to the change that God desires to bring. Let’s embrace the change and see how far the Lord will take us!

In light of change, I sadly report that The Korean Vision Church has decided not to move with us onto our new campus. They feel their ministry is best served in town and they require more space for their ministries. Their last Sunday meeting in our facilities will be March 29th. I am sure you join me in wishing them well as they embrace the change and follow God’s purpose for their congregation.

As is true in all of life, with change springs untold opportunity! What an exciting privilege to be a part of God’s plan and purpose for our communities!

We Labor Together With God, Wes

The Witness – March 8-14, 2015

“The Glory of Victory”

We live in a day when many are discouraged and wonder about the relevance and the future of the church in this modern world.

As we journey to our new campus some wonder if we can actually pull this off. Will we ACTUALLY recognize the privilege before us, accept our individual responsibility and step up to the challenge AND experience VICTORY?

Here is my answer to that question:

Hebrews 11:1 states, “faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

By faith I already see our campus. What I observe is more than buildings. I see ministry. I see people being fed. I see recreation and sporting events. I see the gospel being shared. I see expressions of God’s love. I see people working together with enthusiasm and resolve. I see worship and prayer and the study of God’s Word. I see a people on mission to embrace those who need Jesus as their Savior. I see the substance and evidence of it all!

I am confident that God’s purpose will ultimately be achieved. God will utilize His people in accomplishing His purpose. I am equally confident that if one generation or group of God’s people do not step up, God will raise up another generation or group.

I am confident by faith, that WE are the generation and THIS is the group that will seize the opportunity that has been handed to us and step up to challenge before us, for therein lies the victory!

We labor together with God, Wes

The Witness – March 1-7, 2015

The Challenge

When the Israelites returned to their home after the Babylonian Captivity, one of their first acts was to rebuild the Temple destroyed by King Nebuchadnezzar. They diligently set about laying the foundation. Upon its completion they rejoiced at what they were able to accomplish. (Ezra 3)

As I mentioned Sunday, that is, some rejoiced. Others wept and cried bitter tears because the new temple wasn’t going to be as grandiose as the former. They were longing for the days of the glorious past. How could they be satisfied with anything less than the grandeur of Solomon’s temple? After all, it was one of the wonders of the ancient world.

The account is not about old versus young. It’s not about embracing the past or reaching forward to the future. For you see, both groups squandered the opportunities that God provided. For 15 years both groups abandoned the work of the Lord and left the Temple unfinished to focus on their own homes, their own lives, and their own interests. It’s about the challenge to get busy!

We are not here to look back. We are not here to jump on the latest bandwagon. We are here to get busy with God in what God is doing in these days, for His glory,

What they should have done is what we MUST do; put our backs to the work at hand, embrace what God is doing, and get about the business of serving the Lord.

As of today, there are 41 days until we move to our new campus!

We Labor Together With God, Wes