Father in Heaven,
Jesus says: "One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much." (Luke 16:10) This is such an encouraging Scripture. It makes me think about our church. Lord, our local fellowship is such a dear assembly of people. Truly. Those of us who call Mound Evangelical Free Church our home are truly blessed. For 70 years, Lord, you have enabled us to fly the banner of your gospel - celebrating, demonstrating and communicating the unchanging truths of your cross and empty tomb to the Westonka community. For that we thank you. At the same time, Father, ours is a most ordinary church. Modest in many ways. Unimpressive, unassuming, even struggling. We are like the first century church of Philadelphia in Revelation 3:8 - "I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name." That's us, Jesus. Little power. Yet by your sovereign and kind mercies, we've hung in there - we have not denied your name. That's not greatest commendation of a church, but it could be worse. The question is not 'are we little'? We are. The question is...'will we be faithful in little?' That's the question. And it's one that we desire to answer with a resounding YES.
O matchless Christ...make us to be faithful in little. Full-orbed faithfulness. That's our desire. Yet, Lord, we have a vision. You have birthed a clear vision among our leaders - our pastors and elders - a vision for multiplication. Jesus, in the first century church, you "added to their number day by day those who were being saved." (Acts 2:47) We believe you are anxious to do the same today. We believe you may have more for us, O Christ. Now if we are unfaithful in little, we will only be unfaithful in much. Spare us such a future. But help us, Lord, to be faithful in little. You can do a lot with a little. O make us faithful - that's the path to real fruitfulness. Flat-out faithfulness. Help us to leave it all on the field. Celebrating, demonstrating, and communicating the gospel of Jesus Christ - everywhere...everywhere we go. One who is faithful in a very little is also in faithful in much. Make it so!
In Jesus' Name,
"Let us suppose we are confronted with a desperate thing—say [your local church]... It is not enough for a man to disapprove of...[his church]: in that case he will merely cut his throat or move to...[the next church]. Nor, certainly, is it enough for a man to approve of...[his church] for then it will remain...[as she is], which would be awful. The only way out of it seems to be for somebody to love...[the local church]: to love...[her] with a transcendental tie and without any earthly reason. If there arose a man who loved...[his church], then...[she] would rise into ivory towers and golden pinnacles... [that church] would attire herself as a woman does when she is loved. For decoration is not given to hide horrible things: but to decorate things already adorable. A mother does not give her child a blue bow because he is so ugly without it. A lover does not give a girl a necklace to hide her neck. If men loved...[their churches] as mothers love children, arbitrarily, because it is THEIRS...[she] in a year or two might be fairer than Florence. Some readers will say that this is a mere fantasy. I answer that this is the actual history of mankind. This, as a fact, is how cities did grow great. Go back to the darkest roots of civilization and you will find them knotted round some sacred stone or encircling some sacred well. People first paid honour to a spot and afterwards gained glory for it. Men did not love Rome because she was great. She was great because they had loved her."
-G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy. 1907. https://thegreatermarin.wordpress.com/tag/gk-chesterton/ .
Accessed 10-29-14 @ 9:15pm.