Randy Young –
“There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven. A time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build up. . .” (Ecclesiates 3)
What time is it for St. Andrew’s? It is an interim period of time when there is not a called and installed pastor. But that doesn’t mean that St. Andrew’s is not viable or in hibernation. Neither does it mean that St. Andrew’s is on a sabbatical or a leave of absence. Given what St. Andrew’s is currently facing, what is it that God wants for St. Andrew’s? What is it that God wants St. Andrew’s to do?
During the time of Jeremiah, many of the Israelites were sent into exile, into Babylonia. They were sheep without a shepherd. There was no king. Neither was there a pope or head of the clergy class. Does this sound familiar?
There were a number of voices speaking to the people, and the various voices was telling the Israelites various things, often conflicting things. It was to this confusing cacophony that Jeremiah wrote his epistle. Among the many things he said, he told the Israelites to settle in because it was going to be a long time before they got back to Israel. And don’t just settle in and hang on. Invest in Babylon. If Israel would seek the shalom of Babylon, they, too, would have shalom. What was God saying to Israel?
What is God saying to St. Andrew’s? What are your expectations? What are your expectations of the Pastor Nominating Committee? What are your expectations of Wendy? What are your expectations of the elders and deacons? What are your expectations of yourself during this interim period without an installed pastor? Our expectations powerfully shapes our experiences, if they are good or bad or indifferent.
God told the Israelites to build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat; marry and have children. Seek the peace and prosperity of the city in which you now live. What are your expectations? Are they God’s expectations for you? What is God asking you, the family that is St. Andrew’s, to do in 2015?