In many churches, the Sunday after Labor Day represents the beginning of a new church year. Children and youth programs, choirs, Bible studies and more all begin with a rush of enthusiasm and energy. A quick look through this week’s newsletter confirms that Kick-Off Sunday has arrived at Central Christian Church, as well.
Of course, this year our Kick-Off Sunday happens to fall on the 10th Anniversary of the terrorist attacks of 9/11. We will not let this anniversary pass without also remembering how a single moment can change things forever – whether for an individual, a family or a nation (See the front page for details). But we will also celebrate how out of the ashes of death and destruction can come renewal and rebirth. Indeed, oftentimes we find in our suffering the seeds of ministry to others.
It is natural for those who have experienced the love of God to share it with others. Jesus says in John 6:47 that “whoever believes has eternal life.” Notice he didn’t say whoever believes “will have” but “has” eternal life. When we give our lives over to the power of God and accept Jesus Christ into our lives – we don’t have to wait for the love and glory of heaven, because we are already participating in the eternal life.
That is why we offer the invitation every Sunday just as the Psalmist did thousands of years ago to “taste and see that the Lord is good.” Of course, God can be worshipped anywhere, but Sunday morning is a time especially set apart for worship, study and fellowship in the Spirit. The church is the gathered community of those who are already experiencing the joy of eternal life with God. While that joy is not yet complete – it is real and available to all who would know it.
Are you suffering in some way? Do you need to experience God’s love and healing? Are you simply in need of growth and change in your personal and spiritual life? Come and join the community of the Resurrected One. Come and join with others who know firsthand the reality of God’s eternal love. Come, taste and see that the Lord is good!
There are many opportunities for involvement in the upcoming weeks and months. Please make it a priority to join in. See you in church on this Kick-Off Sunday!