Flexibility. Flexibility. Flexibility. How that word has fallen from my lips as I prepared people to travel! Every time I lead a church trip specifically, I remind the participants that flexibility is the key to navigating the journey successfully. Experience itself informs us of how adaptable we must be. For which traveler has not had a flight delay, a missing suitcase, or even a revised itinerary? I’m certain we all have had some type of glitch in logistics and schedules. When our mission team traveled to Hungary a few years ago, our bags of personal belongings as well as our teaching resources did not catch up to us for approximately five days. Instead, the baggage sat patiently in Houston as it had not been loaded on our plane. And wow, what an experience that was! I am convinced that Ivin Hood’s “green” shirt of the fifth day was actually the same “white” shirt he was wearing when he boarded the plane in Houston. (At least, he did try to create a better aura about him by inserting dryer sheets in his sleeves!) And our lodging? Well, most of us stayed in specific homes with local church people although I stayed in an apartment above the church sanctuary. And oh yeah, did I mention that they locked me in there by myself one night? They even locked the doors from the outside!! I had to crawl out a window the next morning! The only solace I had was knowing that they had also locked Dwight Anderson in a nursing home as well. I’m not kidding! Dwight stayed at the nursing home! Seems fitting, right? Oh, the different challenges that came at us on that one mission endeavor. Throughout that time, I kept preaching that same message to myself: Flexibility! Flexibility! Flexibility! And you know what? With all of the difficult adjustments we had to make, I still regard that opportunity as one of the most satisfying ministry experiences of my life. We had a great team on a great mission to serve a great God! It took flexibility on our part, but our Lord demonstrated His ability to accomplish much!
Lately, I feel as though God has continued to teach me the significance of flexibility. Over the last few weeks especially, our church has had to adapt our worship services and our ministry work for the present context. We have had to gauge the ongoing crisis as we were steadily updated on congregational capacity limits, recommended timing, and appropriate procedures. And to be honest, we continue to adjust as necessary! That is not easy for a traditional, routine guy like me. Yet, I hear the self-proclamation of flexibility in my own life. This is not a one-week mission trip; rather, it is a lifetime of ministry. As a result, we must be committed to making the necessary changes so that we can move to a full ReGathering of His people.
Beginning Sunday, May 31, we will move back to our on-campus regular Sunday Morning Worship Schedule with one Blended Worship Service at
9 a.m. in the Sanctuary and the gathering Worship Services at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. We believe we have plenty of room to continue our social distancing efforts while accommodating everyone in three services. Again, we will continue our online presence as we will livestream the Blended Worship Service at 9 a.m. and the gathering Worship Service at 10:30 a.m. Don’t forget we have also resumed our Wednesday night Prayer Meeting and Bible study at 6 p.m. in the Sanctuary. This service will be livestreamed as well if you can’t join us physically.
Flexibility. Flexibility. Flexibility. I have preached it! Now pray that I will live it! Hope to see you Sunday either on-campus or online!