(photos from Sunday August 6)
Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found him about whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus son of Joseph from Nazareth.” Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” – John 1:45-46
This morning I’m going to continue the “communion” theme I started writing about in yesterday’s post, Community, Mercy, and Grace. I can’t think of a better context for starting a new week than sharing the bread and the wine in a sanctuary filled with people.
A couple of weeks ago, my cousin Peter remarked at how beautiful the sanctuary is at our church. My reply is true for every church, no matter where it meets, how big it is, or the architectural style: “Every sanctuary is beautiful when it is full with people worshiping God.”
And it is even more beautiful when those people are celebrating the Lord’s Supper. There’s something about the buzz of prayer, affirmation, and blessing, the motion of people to and from the front of the church, where four stations of elders wait to serve the bread and the wine.
But it’s something even more beautiful when that spirit of community, of loving one-another without reservation, of grace and mercy and peace, spills out of the sanctuary and into our everyday lives as disciples. We ALL have work to do in this regard, and the people of Wake Forest Presbyterian Church are no different in terms of our need to submit to the work of the Spirit in our every day.
So Rebekah’s words, toward the end of her message, very much resonate with me today:
“We reach people for Christ… by the appeal of what Christ is already doing in our lives and in our life together. This is what brings the world into the presence of God. Come and see. Come, and see! We follow Jesus. Invite others to follow with you on this journey….” (click to listen to Rebekah’s entire messsage)
It’s Monday, and all of us – even members of a vital, thriving congregation like WFPC – have challenges when it comes to living out of faith. But this is where the rubber meets the road! This – this Monday through Saturday world we inhabit – is where the Good News of Jesus is so desperately needed.
Are we going to share this Good News by living full, rich, invitational lives? Or are we going to demonstrate the ineffectuality of faith, and give the world one more reason to turn away?
It’s Monday, and the ball is in our court. – DEREK