From the Pastor's Desk
Greetings in the name of Jesus! When I was a senior in college, I had the privilege of hearing theologian, social critic and author Os Guinness speak. I do not remember everything he talked about that weekend. I do remember him using a phrase that has stuck with me through the years. He spoke about Christianity being about “the now and the not yet.” Many of the promises of God have to do with the present and others will be fulfilled in the future.
This concept has helped me understand a great deal of what the scriptures teach. For instance, Jesus is Lord is an important statement of faith as Christians. When we think of Jesus being our personal Lord and Savior, we are saying that Jesus is our boss, our leader, or our Chief Executive Officer. We also believe that Jesus is the head or Lord of the church. We also state that Christ is Lord of all. We might look around us and wonder how this can be. Things are not completely right with the world. It is then we realize that Jesus is Lord now but not completely yet. We have an expectation that a day is coming when Christ will become Lord of all, just as he is presently the Lord of our lives today.
Easter is a wonderful season of celebrating what Christ has done by conquering sin and death. We believe that Jesus is the victorious Lord even though we know Jesus still has work to do. The abundant and eternal life he promised has begun to shape our lives as we put our trust in Him for our salvation. We have not fully become the people He desires us to be. We are moving on to Christian perfection – that state of loving Christ and others completely. We are not quite there yet. We celebrate new life, the now and not yet.
As I have been reflecting on where we are in the fight against Covid, I very much feel like we are in a “now and not yet” position. We are encouraged by the number of people getting vaccinated and are looking forward to a return to normal. There is a lower number of positive cases and deaths being reported on the news. We are at a better place today than we were a few months ago. There is hope!
We know that we are not there yet. We have not reached the end of mitigation efforts for dealing with the pandemic. We acknowledge that in some ways we will never go back to exactly how things were before Covid. Maybe this is a time to discover what God has in store for us moving forward.
As we celebrate Easter on April 4, I will conclude the sermon series on “The I am Sayings of Jesus” by preaching on “I am the Resurrection and the life”. Pastor Matt and I have decided to follow our 7-week examination of who Jesus is with a series on who “We Are” as the Church. The seven-sermon series will encourage us to think about who we are and what we are to be about as the church. It is my hope that we will be challenged to prayerfully consider where God is leading us as the pandemic ends and moving forward to what God is calling us to be as the church. I am looking forward to all that Christ has in store for us in “the now and the not yet.”