“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” – Jesus: Matthew 28:19-20
This should be Rebekah’s birthday post. But it’s a Sunday and there is so much going on; I’ll let it wait until after the official birthday “hot date” later this evening. Look for pictures in the morning.
The birthday tie-in with Sunday is that this is the BIG birthday that’s responsible for setting so much in motion in terms of retirement.
But more on that later. I want to talk about church, the beautiful crowd of high-schoolers who all sat together in contemporary worship, our growing attendance, the opportunity I had to sing one more time, and Rebekah’s “move the needle” take on The Great Commission.
It’s all about trust:
I will keep this short and simple, but also encourage you to click on this link and listen to the entire message (The Great Commission), starting at the 25:30 mark. For me it came down to two words, “Different” and “Trust.”
Rebekah said she tends to think of this – and likewise The Great Commandment – as the different commandment, and the different commission. Because Jesus was introducing a new way to look at life, and salvation, and what it means to be people who live in response to God’s love.
“But My servant Caleb has had a different spirit (he thinks differently) and has followed Me in every way.” – Numbers 14:24
And the other word, “trust” helps us understand a lot more about what it means when Jesus says, “obey.” We do not obey God because we do not trust. If we learned to trust God more then obedience would feel less coercive, and more like living in response to the fact that we love and trust Jesus.
Then, and this was a real blessing, I had the opportunity to sing at both services. I played Steven Curtis Chapman’s My Redeemer is Faithful and True – and pastor John augmented my simple guitar work with some amazing accompaniment on the mandolin.
If anything could sum up my response to 40 years of ministry, it would be this song. Listen to it, just after Rebekah’s message at the 55:45 mark.
As I look back on the road I've travelled, I see so many times He carried me through; And if there's one thing that I've learned in my life, My Redeemer is faithful and true. My Redeemer is faithful and true. My Redeemer is faithful and true. Everything He has said He will do, And every morning His mercies are new. My Redeemer is faithful and true.
What a great Sunday morning.
It’s true, my redeemer really is faithful and true. Just two more Sundays here at WFPC. I’m honestly not sure that my heart can stand it…. – DEREK
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.