This year, members of our band had a little fun and put together some videos for the Christmas week. Each one speaking to the coming of Christ on earth. Not necessarily the baby Jesus we regularly look towards this season, but the Christ who will return to us one day. The Christ who will remove the veil between the heavens and the earth placed their by sin.
In the same way, some of these songs are not normal Christmas carols, but speak directly to the story that is Christmas. This video begins our week. And fittingly begins at the beginning. Not during a census of entire Roman world issued by Caesar Augustus which caused Mary and Joseph to travel to Bethlehem, but at the creation of man. At the moment of sin. A moment which put into motion events which led to the coming of Jesus as a baby, and will lead to the second coming of Him as a man.
Each of us begin our Christmas season, our anticipation of arrival (or advent), in the same place. Struggling with a separation from God, living in an “in-between” world which longs for Christ’s return.
This should be a sober day. I am not saying we should grieve. I am not saying we should exult. After any election, there are those whose candidate won, and those whose candidate lost. From the narrow margins of this vote, there are plenty of both types in our nation today. What should Christians think? I suggest that Christians should be sober – no matter what they had hoped the outcome would be.
As Christians, we should remember that we do not put our ultimate trust in political leaders, but in God. If we are overly ebullient over the outcome, as if hope that had been shattered has now been restored, we may well be putting our trust in leaders rather than in God. On the other hand, if we are overly despairing, as if a hope we at one time had is now lost, this is also likely an indication of the same misplaced trust.
Ultimately, Christians are citizens of the Kingdom of God living as sojourners in this world. Yet, God spoke through the prophet Jeremiah to instruct His exiled people to seek the welfare of the place in which they found themselves. In this country (our earthly citizenship), Christians have the privilege and responsibility to engage the political process. Hopefully, every Christian worked hard to determine what he or she sincerely believed was best for this place in which we sojourn. We will all stand before God and give an account – hopefully, with a clear conscience. Therefore, we should remember that any two Christians might have checked different boxes in the voting booth. These would be the same two Christians for whom Christ prayed that they would love one another in such a way that the watching world would know they are His followers.
This was an emotional election for reasons that are not necessary to rehearse here. After such a charged and seemingly interminable several months it is not surprising that there would be strong emotions, no matter what the outcome. So, it is important for Christians to remember that Jesus calls us to be merciful. If the person for whom we voted prevailed, this is not a time to gloat, but a time to heal. And if our vote fell to the one who ended up conceding, it is likewise vital to remember that we are called to respect and pray for all of those holding political power. President-elect Trump, Secretary Clinton, and President Obama each exemplified this spirit in their post-election addresses. Christians especially should embrace these leaders’ sound exhortations and do our part to pursue the ideal toward which they pointed us today.
One thing upon which everyone can likely agree is that this election has highlighted some deep differences and frustrations within our country. There are not two sides, there are many. There is not a single group that has now come out of hiding and asserted itself, there are many. People voted for the same candidate for different reasons. Therefore as a society, rather than being giddy with victory or lamenting in defeat, we should sober ourselves and spend our energy discerning the broader themes that are emerging as the smoke begins to clear.
If we capture it, this moment could inaugurate efforts to focus on developing the skills and humility required to really get to know the people behind the perspectives that seem so opposed to our own. During the early days of the trench warfare of World War I, there were several occasions when enemies who had been shooting at one another moments before decided to come out of their trenches and sit down to eat with one another in the no-man’s-land that separated them. This did not eliminate the very serious differences they had as soldiers of warring countries, but it did help them see one another as fellow human beings made in the image of God. The tragedy is that they went back to their trenches and continued firing.
Much of the rancor we have observed in the years leading up to this election has had more in common with trench warfare than with sober dialogue. (I say this of the country, not only of the candidates.) In trench warfare, the objective is to shoot at faceless shadows we perceive as the enemy. Perhaps this is our opportunity to change that by coming out of our trenches and sitting down together to carefully, honestly, respectfully, and humbly discuss our differences. I do not mean that we cover up our disagreements or dismiss their seriousness. This only allows the disease to fester. And we certainly should not attempt to silence or exclude one another. When people feel their ideas are unwelcome at the table, they tend to slip back into the trenches and resume shooting at shadows, rather than engaging with faces – that is, seeing others as real people, not easily despised caricatures. But, this takes work and sacrifice. There is no way around it.
This is why I say this is a sober day. It is a time to move beyond exultation or despair. It is a time to roll up our sleeves and get to work as citizens of the Kingdom of God sojourning on this earth and fully engaged in its welfare. As Christians, we more than anyone should remember the words of the One who shed His blood to reconcile humanity to himself, thereby making it possible for people with deep differences to come to the same table as brothers and sisters. This is the One who said, “blessed are the peacemakers.” As we reflect on this election, let us receive the words of our Lord responsibly. May we all be sober today.
If you haven’t noticed it yet, you will soon. Random people standing in front of your house, staring at their phones in an attempt to “catch em’ all.” Recently, a new app (that’s slang for application) was released for smart phones in the U.S. that not only redefines how we understand augmented reality programing, but gives youth (and people who think they are youth) a reason to explore the world. It’s called Pokemon Go.
The games’ initial function encourages users to visit special locations in their community and abroad. While physically at these locations (yes, it uses the phone’s GPS so it knows the location of the player) the user is able to get supplies and catch different kinds of Pokemon. Instead of traveling to different realms within the game, the player travels to physical locations where elements of the game are found! If you want the full explanation and outline feel free to check out this article.
For myself, a late-90s-child / techie-wanna-be, this it pretty incredible. It does exactly what many kids growing up in the 90s and 2000s who played the video game really wanted to see -the game coming to life. In this case, Pokemon are integrated into the real world, which as you can see from the plethora of screen shots online, it does in a creative and successful way.
From the perspective of the church, I see this new form of gaming signaling much more. I see the new Pokemon game doing exactly what we should be doing, getting people into the world with a unified purpose. Not to catch Pokemon, but to spread the gospel.
As the church, We are called to Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples. However, there is a temptation to distort this pretty clear mission with thoughts like, “I can declare His glory on Sundays,” “I can declare His glory to my friends and co-workers,” and “I can declare his glory by sending someone else money instead of taking action myself.” The list goes on.
But, like Pokemon Go, if we are going to be effective at all, we can’t sit home and wait for the lost or seeking to come to us. We have to go to them. We have to connect with others who share the same mission. We have to work together to accomplish something far greater than what we could ever do by ourselves. And this sometimes includes walking around outside in the hot summer sun. This enables us to not only be effective answering the call written in scripture and discerned through the Holy Spirit, but also to be effective in the diverse types of people we will be able to reach. That is what being a Christian is all about.
Sure we may want to “catch em’ all” and become master Pokemon trainers or maybe we want to laugh and make fun of the hordes of people so focused on an app (stopping in front of your house, on the sides of roads, on the metro, etc). But, I think there is a clear challenge here for either side.
To the Pokemon trainers: How does your focus and view of spreading the gospel compare to capturing that next rare Pokemon? And more convicting, how does your life reflect this?
To the onlooker / critic / indifferent: How does your view of the gospel and living out the call to share it with the world compare to the focus and dedication of those you are observing? Are they devoting more time, more energy, more of themselves to a game than you are to sharing the Grace of God?
On Sunday we talked about who we are as Christians after accepting Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. We were sinners lost in the world when we heard God calling out to us, beckoning us to accept the gift necessary for our salvation. In accepting that, our sins were forgiven and we were made into a new creation. Something more then human.
Our challenge today, is in how we get from point A (accepting salvation) to point B (being superhuman). The idea of being a Christian has been so twisted and misunderstood by the world that the Church is at a disadvantage. We not only have to reach out to the world, we also have live in a way that convinces the world that we are reaching in love/grace, and not judgement/condemnation.
Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 15, verses 42-49:
So is it with the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable; what is raised is imperishable. It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness; it is raised in power. It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. Thus it is written,“The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual. The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven. As was the man of dust, so also are those who are of the dust, and as is the man of heaven, so also are those who are of heaven. Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven.
Paul uses Jesus as an example to explain the concept of resurrection. Jesus was killed on the cross and on the third day he rose from the dead to walk in new life. Because of this, for us to live in Christ’s image, we must also die and be resurrected. We must allow the earthly, the natural, the weak, and the sinful to die and be remade into the spiritual, the heavenly, the strong, the glorious.
The only way to get from point A to point B is through death and resurrection.
When we submit to death and resurrection, we become more than who we once were because Christ begins to be all in all. Christ in us begins to exceed earthly standards for love. In this exceptionalism, or state of being superhuman, we represent Christ. The Church becomes the Church when it shines the light and love of Christ, which is instrumental in enticing others to follow the way.
Sunday’s challenge was to take on characteristics of Jesus. Characteristics that are counter-intuitive to how the world operates. Characteristics that will cause others to ask “What is so different about them?”
Three of the characteristics that we discussed were honesty, reconciliation, and sacrifice. To be clear, I’m not proposing that it’s easy to share our failures, flaws, and struggles honestly. However, by practicing honesty, we can break the stigma that the Church is full of perfect people. This stigma, by the way, is extremely dangerous because it isolates those who are struggling (i.e. everyone feels like they are the only one dealing with a problem) from participating in the wisdom, fellowship, and love of the Church. Yes, honesty will reveal our flaws, but it will also reveal God’s power and God’s love for those who are flawed!
Likewise, true reconciliation isn’t easy. But by living out grace, we are saying that our lives are about so much more than judgement, penance, and retribution. Sure it doesn’t seem “fair,” but was it really fair for Jesus to be crucified? This type of Christ-like action transcends the world’s fairness and gives us an opportunity to live as Jesus.
And nothing could be more Jesus-like than sacrifice. His whole life epitomized sacrifice. It follows that we too are called to a new life where sacrifice is not something we do after we are comfortable, or after our needs are met, but before.
Where should you be honest? Where in your life is there an opportunity to display reconciliation and sacrifice? I certainly can’t tell you. But what I can tell you is that if you pray about it, God will let you know. Seriously.
So, if you are willing to embrace the death that gives way to new life, tell God “‘I give myself away for you to use me, lead me to situations to display who you are, and grant me the courage to do it.”
It’s been a long couple days. Each of us have stories of exploring, shoveling, and even playing in the snow. Maybe you had time indoors or time to catch up on some much needed reading, cleaning, or sleep. For me, the blizzard brought a mix of all of that.
We invited some friends stay with us for the duration of the extended weekend because being snowed in with friends is way more fun then being snowed in by yourself. It was a lot of fun to pass the time with these friends. It was like a perpetual party with competitive Settlers of Catan marathons, movies, and jam sessions in the basement focusing on 80s music, the work of legendary composer Phil Collins, and Merle Haggard’s “Okie from Muskogee.” Which, as you can imagine, provided some chaotic enjoyment and warm fellowship despite the winter backdrop.
After that, when everyone dug their cars out of the snow and went home, that phenomena of emptiness began to set in, like that feeling you get when a big party is over and you are left alone in the echoing chasm of your own thoughts. (assuming you aren’t napping)
But it was then that I had some time to read, pray, and reflect. Personally I struggle with the whole “record of wrongs.” Not so much for others, but keeping a record of my own wrongs. Despite the grace and forgiveness shown to me by God and others, it is difficult to extend it to myself in a way that is anything but momentary. Looking outside before the storm was a perfect image of what I could describe as an “array of failures.” There were things that I set out to accomplish, but due to lack of skill, time, laziness… you name it, these thing were left unfinished. I saw the hole in the fence I set out to fix two weeks ago when I bought the bricks from Home Depot, looked up the best way to do it, and then ….nothing. I saw the wells in front of the basement windows that I meant to dig out to avoid flooding, but because of the cold and the same factors listed above continue to need attention. The list goes on. And that’s just physical manifestations that have to do with the house. We haven’t even began to touch on anything internal, relational, or spiritual.
And, I think we each have those instances that plague us in a way. Failures that tend to speak louder in our memory than successes. Things that always seem present making us feel less, worse, or inadequate as friends, family, leaders, and so on. Allowing these things to continue to define us not only inhibits us from being the people God created us to be, but it also limits any growth or understanding of His grace that we could experience from those failures.
Today as I look out my window, all I can see is white. I don’t see the failed projects, the “could haves,” the “should haves,” or whatever you want to call them. Just white.
In the book of Isaiah it says,
“though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.”
Because of Jesus, God sees us as snow. Not a list of failures, insecurities, and sin. But as snow.
A friend once asked me, “How is my friendship with you any different than a friendship with a non-Christian?” Several shallow answers came to mind, but as I paused to think it over, I was stumped. Personally, I know a lot of moral, charitable, kind, and compassionate non-Christians. If my answer was limited to “In my experience, Christians are more moral, charitable, kind, and compassionate than other folks,” then that sort of answer might border on the edge of un-truth. In reality, I know a lot of really messy and needy Christians.
I, in fact, am a messy and needy Christian who for every inch of progress I make towards Christ discovers a corresponding foot of self-generated expanse that separates me from the divine. I crave the delight of the Creator and often find myself incapable of obtaining it. I want to be moral, charitable, kind, and compassionate but then I get tired and grumpy with all the “doing.” I constantly vacillate, as Paul described in Romans 7:15-20, between getting my priorities right and finding that I fail in practice.
But, perhaps that is the key thing that differentiates Christian fellowship from other forms: Authenticity.
In Christian fellowship, I am free to admit my shortcomings. I can be exactly who I am in the present (a total work in progress) and that is okay. Even in my state of sanctification, the state of letting the old nature leave to be replaced by the new nature, the state where both the old and new coexist, I am accepted and loved by my fellow Christians. Love in Christian fellowship is not conditional on the fact that I have been moral, charitable, kind, and compassionate. No. Christian fellowship and friendship is centered on the core belief that we all share: that while we were imperfect sinners we received unmerited love and redemption. It’s the kind of core belief that allows each of us to glimpse the loveable and to call out that new being into life.
These sort of friendships are life-giving rather than judgmental. There are times of receiving and times of giving as we each share our own experience with God, and in doing so we encourage and teach each other. Through these relationships, and as if by magic, I find myself renewed and without ever striving, successfully implementing Christian virtues. I can’t fully explain how it works, but somehow, through the encouragement of my fellow Christians I am able become more Christ-like.
My answer to this friend, after careful reflection, is “If you are willing to bear with the discomfort of vulnerability, you will find that friendships forged in authenticity and Christian love are the most fortifying and life-changing of all relationships.” I am extremely fortunate to have found this sort of fellowship.
Thanksgiving this year went differently than planned. Originally, my wife and I were going to head up to my parent’s house to spend time with relatives and friends, and of course to eat… This is our usual Thanksgiving deal. As all the best laid plans, however, they were soon completely thrown off.
I started feeling sick on Tuesday and Wednesday night hit the climax of what would soon be diagnosed as bronchitis. Thus, on Thursday, it was clear that we wouldn’t be going anywhere. I was stuck on the couch trapped in a mix of Hulu and sleep. Far from the ideal.
Today, though, I find myself thinking about those missed moments. The family I didn’t see, the friends I did’t catch up with, and of course the turkey I didn’t eat. Really, the essence of the Thanksgiving Facebook posts, Instagram pics, text messages, and so on. Because in the midst of their seemingly shallow facade exists the biblical concept of εὐχαριστέω, or thankfulness.
Throughout scripture, and notably in the letters of Paul, there is an emphasis on being thankful. “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” “Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father…” “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving…” and so on. It is entirely fitting then, as a Christian, to see this time of year as much more than a day commemorating Pilgrim activity, survival, and relationships. It is a time to deny the societal norm of desire, selfishness, and discontent, and embrace appreciation, fulfillment, and thankfulness.
And at these times, we customarily emphasize this thankfulness in key ways by spending time with family, gathering with friends, reflecting on what we appreciate, and breaking bread together. As someone who missed the annual moment, I actually found myself somewhat hopeful. Hopeful, not that I dodged the bullet of seeing annoying relatives, friends who only talk about their jobs and kids, or a cholesterol filled overcooked turkey that I’ll have to eat for the next week, but that I felt challenged to take the nature of that day and moment, and infuse it into my normal reality. As the Bible says, “giving thanks always.”
Now, this is not one of those things that should be only considered and internalized. Sure, we should thank God in prayer and be aware of what we have been blessed with. Certainly. But, just as this day has a more external and extroverted nature, so should this challenge. Living out the challenge to practice thankfulness can mean small moments of vocalizing appreciation for family, friends, and those around. But can also be much more. A meal to celebrate those in our lives centered around what things we are thankful for this month, or this week. In essence, not a time to complain, to vent, or to share struggle, but a time to move beyond that and celebrate the blessings we see every day.
And, as Zig Ziglar said, “Be grateful for what you have and stop complaining – it bores everybody else, does you no good, and doesn’t solve any problems.” But it is thankfulness that creates gratitude, and generates contentment that is the cause of peace.
I don’t know about you, but when people ask “how old is the church,” I usually get it wrong. It’s kind of like that mature kid who drinks coffee, puts their allowance in the bank, and gives better advice about life’s problems than you do. Then all of a sudden you realize, “…oh wait I’m the adult.”
Last winter I was the guy saying two years. Then in summer, I was at three. And, being at West City personally for one (half its life) you’d think I would know better. But, as I was filming the video and we got to the end of the interview, I would say something like “Ok, now say happy three year anniversary West City.” To which the interviewee would respond….”umm I think it’s two” (knowing full well it was).
A little embarrassing.
But grace abounds and personal idiosyncrasies aside, as we round this milestone I feel like it is important to note a couple of things about the church. Things which in essence are timeless, and make you truly wonder “what’s age really?”
The Presence of the Spirit
We have access in one Spirit to the Father. 19 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone,21 in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. 22 In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit. – Ephesians 2:18-22
As Ephesians describes, through the Spirit, God has blessed us with what we need to do what we do as the church. In the video one thing that almost everyone said was “I felt the presence of the Holy Spirit.” What an incredible and humbling statement! There is something so mystical and yet palatable when you enter into into a space where God’s Spirit is active. And it is a testimony to the presence of God alone that is it not one person, one family, or one group, who on their own can make the church a haven of grace.
The Parts of the Whole
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5 and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; 6 and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. 7 To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8 For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills. – 1 Corinthians 12:4-11
Not only has God filled this church and its members with His Spirit, but in that action He has blessed and gifted each of us in specific and unique ways. We have some who are called to evangelize and spread the gospel to the community and abroad, some who are called to teach and lead small groups, some who are called to help lead the musical and visual elements of worship, some who are called to minister to the children in the community, some who are called to be a welcoming presence for those visiting who are looking for a Spirit filled community, and so on. One timeless element at West City is an arsenal of all of the above and more. Most importantly, the members of the church are seeking to be aware of God’s leading as it flows from one area to another. We have an openness and understanding that in the church is not about being comfortable or content, but it’s about being challenged and used by God for something amazing in ways that are not quite possible by human standards.
Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. 13 Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching. 14 Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophecy when the council of elders laid their hands on you. – 1 Timothy 4:12-14
We are certainly young. We are certainly not a well known, big church with satellite campuses, name recognition, and so on. But we are also certainly called, commissioned, and ordained into ministry for our community! We are certainly charged with being an example “in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity.” To be unashamed, we do not deny who we are as members of the church, we do not deny the gifts that each of us have been given, and we do not deny the Spirit who fills not only our place of worship, but each one of us also. To be unashamed we bravely enter into a new year as a small church ready to do great things.
God is creating something truly incredible and I feel excited and blessed to be a part of it.
What about you?
In the video Heidi, Francis, Megan, and Vincent were asked four questions. Nothing difficult or weird. But questions that were telling of how they saw the church, how it impacted them, and how they felt God leading it into the future. I encourage you to answer the same questions and respond with you answers (long or short) to this post or on Facebook. It would be great to see each of your answers and how similar or different they turn out. Happy two year anniversary West City.
What brought you to West City?
Why did you stay?
What is one favorite moment or element?
What is one hope for the next year or the future?
When the idea of gleaning first appeared on my radar, I was excited by the prospect of doing something different than the usual outreach/service activities. And, I thought that as a relatively new church plant wanting to start getting involved in different types of ministries, gleaning the perfect way to begin. But, my conversations with others about the idea quite frequently led to the same question: “What is gleaning?.” Quite honestly, it does sound a little creepy, especially when the trip was referred to as “the gleaning.”
We’ve lost the concept of gleaning. But, in a sort of existential reflection, that seems to be a pretty solid picture of the society we live in. Without over-generalizing, sermonizing, or denounce the culture entirely, the question really ends up being: “Why glean?.” Or, further still, why even offer the possibility to glean.
It’s safe to assume farms and farming equipment have come a long way in the last two to three thousand years. And, from my research, in some cases farmers have the ability to pretty much harvest the entire crop without any human stepping foot on the field. With this technological capability of maximization it’s hard to believe farms that may already be on unsure financial footing will let even the smallest amount of crops be missed.
But, perhaps, the underlying rationale for gleaning isn’t entirely profit based. Perhaps technologically we have changed and evolved, but ethically some tenets remain, timeless as the God who commanded them.
In the Hebrew Bible, God commands His people:
And when you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field right up to its edge, nor shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest. You shall leave them for the poor and for the sojourner: I am the LORD your God.
So that’s kind of cool. I guess that, according to that scripture, the people had the ability to harvest the field in its entirety even then. Yet, God commanded them to leave some of the crops for the poor and the foreigner, traveler, or simply someone who does not have a home in the location.
And as cool as that is I don’t think it really ends there. God definitely cares about the poor and the sojourner, but in His wisdom this text is also God caring about us to teach us something. The lesson is that our purpose as His people encompasses so much more than just how we understand ourselves. It’s how we understand the world around us and our place in it. That, because God cares for those who are suffering, we as His people, are called to care as well.
And in the same way that we picked apples with bruises, discoloration, and honestly some weird shapes, each of those had value and are now being used to feed those who would have gone hungry. Seeing through God’s eyes is seeing that each person has so much value, that we can’t help but yearn to minister to and learn from them.
Picking crops for a few hours wasn’t entirely difficult. It didn’t put us out of our comfort zone or throw off our social calendars. But, what I hope it did was remind us that at the core (no pun intended) of who we are as God’s people, as Christ’s body, and thus as a church, is a call to minister to the poor and the suffering. And building on that reality, I know God will do some amazing things at this church and continue to bless it with inspiring opportunities to serve those around us.
On Monday, October 12, several thousand people gathered in front of the Lincoln Memorial to pray for the Washington, DC metropolitan area. What was remarkable about this group was how similar it was to the description of eternal worship found in Revelation chapter 7:
… I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’
As people from churches of various ethnicities, skin colors, and worship styles assembled that day in front of the place where Martin Luther King preached, “I have a dream that one day little black boys and girls will join hands with little white boys and girls,” and that “the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and shall see it together,” we witnessed a taste of that Revelation vision.
Prayer is a privilege that Jesus made possible through the shedding of His blood. Because His blood paid for our sins, all who are His followers can approach God boldly in prayer as our heavenly Father. In fact, God calls us to come to Him with all of our needs, to pray for other people, and to spend time enjoying His presence.
There are many places in Scripture where we see that some things are only made possible by asking God to act through prayer. When He does, we behold His power and His glory.
This is why prayer is a vital part of who we are and what we do at West City Fellowship. God has called us to be His people and display His glory to the world as a church. This otherwise impossible task is made possible through prayer – and we count on that! Therefore, we pray that as a church will be a place where people of many ethnicities gather together to exercise the privilege of prayer. As we do, we eagerly anticipate the joy of witnessing God’s response to our call to Him.