(all images in today’s post courtesy of Wake Forest Presbyterian AV)
“Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another.” – Hebrews 10:22-25
Sunday morning a week ago Rebekah and I were getting ready to head to church in Tennessee when we remembered the time zone difference and tuned in to be with our home congregation on Facebook Live.
What we saw – once again in this remarkable summer series at WFPC – was a sanctuary overflowing with people gathered to worship God and to celebrate the exciting ministry and mission initiatives that continue to animate our congregation of Jesus-followers.
Faith put into practice:
It always does my heart good to see so many people on campus. Then Saturday, in conversation with the morning men’s group I attend, author CS Lewis helped me understand a little more of exactly why showing up is so beneficial.
Faith, Lewis argues, is a combination of believing and then choosing to reinforce what we believe via intentional spiritual disciplines such as prayer and worship. Simply being in worship on a regular basis, and engaging with faith in an active community adds the affirmation of practice to what our heart has already embraced. Believing only goes so far; emotion is not enough; reason is not enough; lip-service is of no use; good deeds without faith will not get it done; faith without action is dead; “spiritual but not religious” leaves people with no depth and no functional relationship with God and God’s purposes.
Commitment to an active life of faith in the context of a worshipping, missional, service-driven community is not only good for us but essential if we want to be more than one-dimensional as believers. Not just admirers of God but followers of the Living Way of Jesus.
This, by the way, is why our choir are singing their hearts out in this photograph. This is why people show up. This is why WFPC continues to grow as a faithful witness to light and love. This is why we call ourselves disciples.
I’ll see you in church – DEREK
(images from last Sunday, August 12, 2018)
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.