So here we are in late January…how are those resolutions going? Is your fuel already on low? Our current message series is causing me to view resolutions more seriously this year, and maybe approach them differently. I’m landing on the fact that I can’t do this alone. We need support, and accountability, and people to ask us about our progress. We need a network if resolutions are going to stick.
Quick review of networks in biblical history: As soon as Adam was created, it was evident he needed a mate. After Eve, came a family. God used a family as the basis for accountability and support. Throughout the generations He asked parents to teach and bless their kids with wise and Godly counsel. Based on the family dynamic, God created a Holy Nation, Israel, to be His model for how life among the people of the world could and should be lived. Within the nation of Israel systems of governance and worship were established for the good of the people and to honor the Creator. Each Israelite had a role to play in that national system. When the Creator arrived on earth as Immanuel, God with us, He took the family and national dynamics to their next level, the Church. As established by the work of the Holy Spirit through the apostles and prophets, life in network, the Church, began to bless, encourage and bring support to God’s people in new and fulfilling ways.
So, church life…is it blessing you? Are you blessing it?
I’m being pulled this year, as my resolution, to love my church more. Why? It is God’s design for my good. And when I play my part, I’m blessed even more. I’m supported and encouraged. I’m fulfilled by the feeling of accomplishment when I do my part in the network, the system. My church is dynamic, not just because the Holy Spirit empowers it, but because the gifts given to me by the Holy Spirit, are helping others to find a supporting network of family. When a person’s biological family fails, our church family can come through. When I’m discouraged by my nation’s wavering from godly counsel, my church family can stand in the gap with me.
So, I’m resolved; this year I will value Hillside’s values. I’ll WORSHIP with heart and diligence. I’ll GROW by giving my best to our church family. I’ll SERVE when asked, and even look for new ways to serve when no one else might see the need. I’ll look for ways to SHARE my faith with those who are outside the family. I’ll GIVE with a cheerful heart, knowing my church family and those who might join the family, will be blessed.
So maybe my 2017 resolutions aren’t so much about me, as they are others. And since we all need accountability to keep resolutions, loving and connecting more with my church will give me that accountably. God designed His Church, and Hillside Christian Church, to help me make the changes I need to make, because within that network I’ll find the support and encouragement I need. Here we go. Keep lookin’ up!
– Bob Schroeder