Keeping Things In Perspective

Today was the 42nd Anniversary of my church, Quezon City Evangelical Church. Here were some of my thoughts this morning as we went through worship service. I am only writing this post now since I’m wide awake from sleeping almost the entire afternoon. I wasn’t being lazy; I needed that almost-the-entire-afternoon sleep. Now my brain’s functioning again. (Canned laughter from imaginary people who aren’t really there.)

  • I am constantly marveling at how patient God is with his church, both as a corporate entity and as individual temples of the Holy Spirit. I don’t want to be speaking out of line (I know I’ll probably offend some people with what follows, but…) but everybody and his uncle more or less knows the schismatic history of my church. We were split twice (that I know of) and a church split is not a nice thing, to put it mildly. I always believed that in a church split, both sides lose. Both sides will always believe they are in the right and the other side is in the wrong. I’ve still to meet someone who is willing to say, “May God forgive us for merely playing church, and not living it.” On the individual side, I believe I won’t be off the mark when I say that not one of us has lived perfectly in the past week, let alone the past 42 years. Yet every time we fall, God is patient with us and like a shepherd, prods us back in line with his Word. He is faithful indeed.
  • It is an annual practice during an anniversary to have a “Love Feast” right after the service. I can’t shake the feeling that there are people who go there just for the food. I have personally nothing against eating – I myself am a voracious eater, but I wonder what kind of turnout we will have if we suddenly announce that instead of a love feast after the service, we will have a prayer meeting instead? I’m hoping for an even higher attendance.
  • Even when I’m not doing anything (no preaching, no translating, no leading the service, etc.) I’m still doing something – either somebody’s looking for me, or somebody else needs something from the office, or something like that. Though things have improved since I first mentioned this, oh… about forty posts ago.
  • Knowing the first point will drive you to humility and thank God for his grace. I certainly struck me. We don’t deserve grace like the one God continually shows, yet he shows grace nonetheless. Thinking about that will lead you to think again how patient God is…
  • Which has led me to ponder on how patient (or impatient) I am.

A verse I’m meditating on:

“And we are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.” (1 John 1:4)  The purpose of 1 John (as a complement to John’s gospel) was to show believers how they may know (or be assured) that they have eternal life. It is a joy indeed for any pastor or church leader or church planter to see the church they have planted or are leading growing in the knowledge of Christ and his work on the cross. What pastor wouldn’t want to see his church grow and mature in the faith? The preceding is admittedly simple. Sometimes simple is the way to go.

May QCEC, with all her shortcomings, continue to be that kind of church. Happy 42nd, QCEC!

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