Recently, Sheila and I had the privilege of visiting the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library in Atlanta, GA. If you havenít ever been, itís definitely worth your time. Whether you lived in the era of the Carter Administration, or like me youíre a student of civics and history, youíll find it to be an interesting place Iím sure. And if not, you can at least swing by after a Braves game and a hotdog.
In many Presidential Libraries they have replicas of the Oval Office, and theyíre always one of my favorite parts to see. Theyíre setup to look just like the presidentís office at the time when they led, down to the books, couches, and even the pens. When Iíve visited one of these halls of history, itís in these offices that I linger the longest. I like to imagine what it must have been like in the hustle and bustle of doing the nationís business. I can just see scenes of the President behind his desk, making pivotal decisions, commanding troops, and attempting to move the nation forward. Surely there were people flowing in and out, talking, directing, and strategizing. Each personís role critical to the mission, supporting and advising and using their talents for the cause. A team working together, helping accomplish the mission of the President, and hopefully the nation itself.
In Godís kingdom, there is much to be made of teamwork. 1 Peter 4:10 says "As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace.Ē Godís Word tells us that whoever has received Christ as Savior and Lord, has also received gifts from his Holy Spirit. And like an adviser to a nation, we are to use these gifts for the up building of one another in order to advance the Kingdom of God, moving forward the mission to ďgo and make disciples.Ē Christ calls us to put our hands to the work, never tiring, giving grace to one another in the struggle, and forging ahead in his name and by his power.
However, when it comes to that Oval Office at the Carter Library, something is missing. For all the imagining that might take place, the hallways of that office are empty. The sounds are just of a recording of a narrator, discussing what once happened there. And when the day is done, the lights are shut off, and the chair sits empty. And so it is with the work God has given our church when we donít show up, when we donít show grace, and when we tire of doing good. While our personal faith may survive, and Godís Kingdom may advance, the team loses momentum and the cause can lose its fire.
You matter to the cause of Christ here at Starnes Cove. And while it's been made clear in this season of our church's life that God has richly blessed us with a faithful people, we must never tire of moving the Gospel forward. As we look ahead to the summer, be sure to take part this June (17th-21st) in Vacation Bible School, as a worker or a student yourself. As our students head to Summer Camp (24th -29th) dedicate yourself to praying for them and encouraging them however you can. And as we meet together for our regular Sunday School, Sunday Worship, and Wednesday Prayer Meeting, be here as you are able. Because while the nationís business matters, our business is eternal, and God has called us to be workers for the cause.
Looking Forward to Seeing You and Serving with You,