I'd better get this in before there's another database connection error. Grrrr.
The scene behind the church this afternoon. It started raining, oh, sometime on Saturday and finally let up a little while ago. I saw on Facebook that we got around 15" of rain. Lots of flooding going on around here.
It rained almost all day long yesterday (Easter). I was pretty bummed because last year it was just so beautiful and bright outside. This year was dark and gloomy. Not the way I wanted to celebrate Easter. But, God was working on me and teaching me.
My mood is generally affected by numbers. And by numbers I mean weekly attendance and giving. It's not just my mood but my self-worth, understanding of calling, and all that. I wasn't fired up for Easter this year. I looked at the weather forecasts and knew that it would rain which meant that there wouldn't be as many people on Sunday morning. I was not happy. But, I noticed something as we began to worship yesterday. Suddenly, that concern and burden weren't there. I'm not entirely sure what God did in me, but I knew that as I got up to preach one of my weakest sermons of all time God was stripping away the self-focused concern about numbers. I cared more about clearly presenting the gospel to those gathered than the actual number of people who showed up. What a clear sign of grace to me and how grateful I was to have experienced it!
Slowly but surely, my heart is figuring out that my identity, self-worth, reputation, and all that are actually in Jesus and not me. I wish I figured out things a little more quickly but progress is better than stalling.