It was good to get away, even though much of the time was spent trying to get retreat locations nailed down for the upcoming year. After some site tours, we still found ourselves working, even with time off.
On Friday, I was thankful to get in a truck and go to Cincinnatti, Ohio to take in a Reds game, and enjoy the fellowship of some old friends and make some new ones. The men’s group from Columbia (where I was pastor for eight years) makes this annual trip, and this is my second year to tag along. I appreciate them helping me to wind down and relax. Some of the other pastors in the area went along with the group, so it was good to get the time of fellowship with them.
As I write (Sunday night) I am looking forward with anticipation to what the Lord is doing among us. Since the convention, I have already heard several praise reports of stirrings of the Spirit of God in some of our congregations. To hear that the baptistries are in use and that people are coming to the Lord both in church services and out of them helps me to know that something IS happening.
Remember, as we look forward to completing the great commission (Matt 28; Acts 1:8) we MUST focus on our priorities of redefining ourselves. As I shared in the vision casting service of the convention, we must stop thinking of ourselves as a denomination and return to our roots as a missionary movement, where people we’re not only “..willing to go, but willing to die,” to see the gospel reach the lost world.
We must focus on evangelism in whatever form we find it and the “close the net” once we reach out. In other words, we will disciple those we win to the Lord and teach them to win others.
THIS IS NOT AN IMPOSSIBLE DREAM!
I believe with all of my heart that as we focus on our missionary efforts, the Lord will add to our churches daily. This is the heart of my enthusiasm and also my hope for this generation!