Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Revitalizing CLBC: Part 8 (Final Post)
This is part 8, and final post, in the series walking through the revitalizing process, thus far, of Cypress Lake Baptist church. You can read part 1 here, part 2 here, part 3 here, part 4 here, part 5 here, part 6 here, and part 7 here.
This is my final post in this series, and it has been a clarifying series for me. After saying all that I have I must admit the process has been pretty amazing. I've been in this church for just over a year and a half at this point. Our attendance has gone up pretty significantly, we've been more engaged (though I still want more!) in reaching out to those around us and to the ends of the earth, we've seen God do amazing things, and yet we haven't been all that engaged in doing the work like I had hoped.
What I mean is that when we get to the end of this post I realize that the changes that have taken place thus far, the growth we've seen, the desire to know and study God's Word, have all happened in spite of what I have or have not done. We are in a very good season as a church, yet I constantly see the need to shift, strengthen, organize, mobilize, and a thousand other things. Yet God continues to grow His church numerically as well as in depth.
This is exciting. But what really has caused this?
When I look at the success of the early church I realize two things were taking place. The apostles stated it clearly in Acts 6:4, "But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word." Most of my plans haven't come to fruition, at least, not at this time. Most of my thoughts haven't happened the way I thought they would (or at least how they should). However, one thing that has happened with our church is a growing love for God's word as well as realization that we are absolutely dependent upon God for anything to happen. By realizing this we have seen God do amazing things as He's answered prayers and created in us a hunger and thirst for righteousness and His word.
There are areas I think we need to improve upon, but then again there will always be areas we need to improve upon because we are still in need of final redemption. The story of Cypress Lake Baptist Church is still being written. God is still doing an amazing work in and among us. But rest assured, it is God who is doing the work. It is God taking His word, accompanied by His Spirit, who is doing the work in His church. It is as though Jesus was serious when He said, "I will build my church, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it" (Matthew 16:18)