"And He is the head of the body, the Church… so that in everything He might have the supremacy." – Colossians 1:18
I'm impatient. I hate to wait. There, I said it. I'm sure none of you can relate, but for those few who can, I'll continue. It's bad enough when we wait with a set ending (the tests results will be back Friday), but it's all the more difficult when the wait is open-ended. We have to wait not knowing when the waiting will end, and that is very much a Biblical concept. The Israelites waited 400 years in slavery and 40 years in the wilderness before God finally answered their prayers. In Acts 1, the disciples wait, as commanded by Jesus, and they knew their history. They didn't know how long it would be, yet they had one very important ingredient – and we have it too: the Ascension. They saw Christ rise before their eyes, bearing our humanity to the right hand of the Father. Thus, in our open-ended waiting, we do so in the sure and certain knowledge of Christ's rule and reign in our lives. We know how the story ends. We also wait knowing that Christ rules and reigns in the His Church. Even though the world appears increasingly harsh and cold, we serve and live as part of HIs Body, knowing that it is His Church through which He is revealing Himself to the world. We are not standing idly by, but we are busy moving into the vision for which He called us into existence. At FPCO, that is precisely where we are – looking to the future – not complacent or comfortable – but moving and growing onward, upward, forward, Godward.
My FB account got hacked. Most of you know if you get a friend request from me - or anyone - and you know you're already friends – don't accept it. I get a variety of those all the time, and I always check first. Do the same and you'll be fine.
KAVANAUGH HEARINGS: All of us have watched the events surrounding Judge Kavanaugh's nomination through the lens of our particular bias, the ever-increasing tribalism of our time. However, my sadness – my disappointment – has come from seeing so many who profess Christ as Savior and Lord act and speak in ways wholly contrary to that declaration. I have seen posts that contain pictures or words or both that are so vile, abhorrent and utterly disgusting that I am heartsick. Our call as those who follow Christ is 24/7. Social media is not somehow excluded. Whatever it is you believe, do so in a manner that is respectful of the people and opinions of those on the other side. If we, as Christians, cannot restore honor and civility to public discourse, then how will it ever come? We need to engage in every element of political life. Vote. Run for office. Volunteer on a campaign, but do not for a moment forget that how you live and how you speak are reflections of Jesus, and His Kingdom is the one that matters more than any kingdom of this world.
I love the movies and I am particularly excited to see A Star is Born and First Man. Sadly, First Man whiffs on not actually having an American flag planted on the moon in the pivotal scene. How they arrived at that decision is beyond me, and almost enough to make me not see the movie, but there are too many others things that will still draw me in.
Big wins over the weekend for Texas and Florida. Neither school has been too good for quite a while, so it was gratifying to see them both get wins over top 10 teams. It's good for college football and its good for the general attitude in my house!
In my 100 word Sentinel column yesterday, I raised the issue of using hotel tax dollars to help house the homeless. I didn't have the space to explain that currently state law prohibits that from happening. The tax was created to fund local projects that would continue to grow tourism – like entertainment venues and stadiums - and thus prosper hotels and their owners. The reality is that our homeless population cannot be housed in the longterm (the next 500 people who need it) without a designated public funding stream. Most communities that succeed do this via a tax of some kind. The hotel tax draws $300 million a year OR MORE and NOT A PENNY goes to serve the poor or vulnerable among us. That's a disgrace. A mere ten percent would solve the problems for affordable housing AND housing the homeless, and I'm going to be banging that drum with ever increasing vigor.
The NFL's Buffalo Bills had one of their players – CB Vontae Davis – retire AT HALFTIME of a game. I can't stop thinking about it. It'd be like me preaching half a sermon and then suddenly declaring, "That's it. I'm done" or a doctor mid-operation saying , "Thanks everyone, but that's all I'm doing." Blows my mind.
Wil Brown and our Genesis Worship team put together a multi-cultural celebration yesterday as part of World Communion Sunday. It was a tremendous service and I encourage you to take a look at it on the FB feed from our webpage. Great job Wil Brown and team!
MARK YOUR CALENDARS: We are rolling out our thoughts and ideas on our vision process in a variety of small groups, committees and other natural gatherings this month. I'll be doing a FACEBOOK LIVE SESSION on Thursday, October 25 at 7 pm to share that information for those who have not heard it yet and also field questions and take comments afterwards. Plan to be a part!