Tuesday, June 07, 2005
Good Morning Readers,
A Final Thought --
Your roving reporter is home, a safe and uneventful trip; the best kind. But on the way home I had the chance to consider a point or two I'd like to share.
As I mentioned earlier, during the whole conference this reporter sensed a mood of Hopefulness, Jubilation, Joy, Anticipation. The singing seemed more robust than at some other times. The mood of the sermons, and talks, and Disciples Generous Response (offertory) remarks, and the prayers were powerful, upbeat, visionary. Looking beyond...........
There was a sense of new beginning -- a new start. Talking with Apostle Linda Booth just as I was leaving yesterday she said, "Bob, I'm excited about the future possibilities. We are in a good place."
So my question to us all is this - How do we, who were part of the conference experience, translate what we felt into a language and action in our home congregations that makes a difference? And how do we, in our local congregations, make the dreams and vision of Community of Christ leadership real and alive in our smaller, local communities?
A thought I've read often is, "Don't tell God how big your problem is, Tell your problem how big your God is."
So is your God big enough to tell someone about? Is your God powerful enough to tell you ailing friend about? Is God's compassion big enough to tell your hurting neighbor about? Is God's assurance big enough to tell your worried coworker about? Is God's love big enough to share with someone who is about to lose their home, or family? Is God's generosity big enough to volunteer at a local food bank, or mission? Is God's hope big enough to share with someone you know who may not see any hope for their future? Is God's peace big enough to share with someone you care about who is lost and afraid? Is God's joy big enough for you to share with someone who seems to have lost the joy of living?
Steve Veazey is the new leader, the President of the Community of Christ. We have several new members of the Council of Twelve Apostles, and an updated Bishopric. But it's not enough.
A few new leaders are not enough to change the world and build Community - Zion, in the places where you and I live. We need to join the mission. We need to see the vision. We need to answer "YES" to the call! Can we? Will we?
During conference, I pledged a hearty YES to go back and make a difference at home. It's an easy promise in the midst of hundreds of others, all riding on the spiritual wave of promise and optimism we felt. But the question remains, can I keep my promise here, at home, in my local congregation and community? And can I be infectious with my desires so that others will want to come along. Can I help my congregation become healthy, in all three areas of congregational life; 1) internal activities like worship, pastoral care, education, 2) external activities like peace and justice ministries and community service, and 3) inviting and witnessing activities? Will we risk being relevant to those we are called to minister and witness to?
Will we join together, as never before, to answer YES to the call? Will we live the mission to create community? Will we invite others, as Andrew did in the New Testament, to "come and see?" And will there be anything so see if they do come?
We worship a big and powerful God. We worship and awesome God. Let's go show and tell someone about our God!!
Until SPEC, Thanks for reading,
your roving reporter
If you have enjoyed Bob's conference reports, you can write and thank him at: SeventyBob@aol.com
Conference photo albums are here.