Greetings St. Timothy’s Church:
It is with great sadness that I need to inform you that I’m moving… to a new office. Ah ha! Did you think I was going to say I’m moving away? Oh no St. Timothy’s Church – we’re in this together, I’m not going anywhere! But I am moving offices, that’s true. In fact, quite a few of the church staff are moving from our current spots dotted around church to new places.
“Why is that, Allen?” you ask, “Is it because you don’t like that spacious wood paneled office?” No, it’s not that at all; in fact, I’m really going to miss being in the big rector’s office, especially having spent a good bit of time getting it organized just how I like it. So why leave it then?
Because, to put it simply: ministry matters. As our church looks outside of our little corner of midtown, we’re going to see opportunities to fill our church with people – some to worship with us on Sundays and others to be blessed by the use of our space. Don’t believe me? Just as the AA group that weekly uses the parish hall or the parents prayer group from St. Timothy’s School that monthly uses the parlor. Without us being here these groups wouldn’t have a space to meet. So imagine, what if we made space available for even more to come and join us?
Asking this question has been the main driver behind our office reshuffle and the clearing out of the rector’s office. Not only can we make further space available to our already-established groups, but through making space we can also be prayerfully planning how to welcome others in as well.
Such decisions are at the heart of what it means to live lives worthy of the calling we have received (Ephesians 4:1). According to St. Paul, such lives are marked out by a new attitude, a new perspective, you could say a whole new self “created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:23-24). That sounds pretty grand, and it is, but practically it means as Christians we are called to live lives directed more by what God wants than directed by what we want.
Sometimes when we do things that God directs we find that God blesses us in ways we didn’t expect. Let’s be honest, it’s lovely when this happens and shows us just how God can grow something great from our seed of faith. But other times, when we choose to do something for God’s sake it may be little more than a simple assurance that the changes we willingly make to our lives are things our Heavenly Father is proud to see us do for him and/or for others.
I’ll certainly be trying to keep this in mind when we’re lugging heavy wooden furniture around on Monday, June 3rd. But ministry matters. So let me close with a question: what else can we do as a church to show that here at St. Timothy’s ministry matters?
Lord, open our eyes as we seek to live lives worthy of the calling we have received. Ministry matters; Lord, help us to see what that ministry is and will be and to have the courage and desire to see it happen. Amen.