Over the course of the last week and weekend, I heard more than a few friends and family of Milner Memorial wonder about the future. Just this year, we have lost some cherished friends and family making our gatherings together feel smaller, more threatened. It is easy to succumb to this feeling as it is overwhelming at times. We want to grow, we want the building to be full with the hum of activity, we want our worship services to generate enthusiasm and not echoes. But, sometimes what we want fails to be what we receive.
What we have received is a promise, that God is with and for us. As we've been worshiping together, the theme of promise has been lifted up time and time again over the last several weeks. It's a worthwhile reminder that God does promise, but God does not always reveal the timeline for God's promises. Even Jesus reminds the disciples that he does not even know the hour or day...God's plans always remain known and unknown, precise and undefined, paradoxes one and all.
God has made promises to us here at MMPC. We can be sure of this. And, with faith we grow day by day in our ability and willingness to live into those promises. The passing of the saints among us tests our patience and faith, it causes us to come up short of breath, it makes us wonder if God has forgotten God's promise to be with us - to be our strength and stay. I suspect this is why I heard more worries this last week than affirmations about what God is doing among us.
While I do not know the day or hour any more than Jesus did, I can tell you I have full faith in God's ability to keep God's promise. I don't know how that promise will look in 3 months or 3 years, but I know it will be kept. God loves the church and God loves MMPC! God is our strength and stay, a present help in time of need. God is there for us and will lead us. Remember that with faith also comes the situations where faith will be used. Our faith is ready, along with our hearts.