United for What?
As many of you know, we combined services with Ministerio Vida Nueva this Easter. In this devotional reflection I want to talk about why we did that.
First, we didn’t combine because it made our church seem bigger. If anything, the great Sunrise service Ministerio Vida Nueva put on detracted—not inflated—our numbers at the 9am service.
Second, we didn’t do it because it was easier. It wasn’t. If anything, it was harder. There’s details lost in translation. There are endless preferences (e.g., worship styles, preaching styles, differences in dress and attire), which complicate things. And there are massive cultural differences.
Third, we didn’t do it because we wanted to be “nice.” Ministerio Vida Nueva is doing incredibly well, and so is Covina Evangelical Free Church. This wasn’t charity on either end.
So why? Why combine? Why do the hard work of changing our entire routine on one of the most important Christian holidays throughout the year?
We did it for unity. We did it to put on display the love, grace, peace, and mercy that is overflowing from our hearts. We did it because we have absolutely nothing in common—in terms of language, background, culture, even cuisine!—and yet we have everything in common. What do I mean? We can look at our Spanish speaking brothers and sisters and with them say, “I was once lost, and now I’m found.” I collective “lostness” and “foundness,” to make up words, unites us. And we want the world to see.
Why is that important? Because more happens than edification and spiritual enrichment when we gather. When we gather we put the powers and principalities of this world on notice that God’s Kingdom is advancing in Covina, and there isn’t a thing that Satan and his forces can do about it.
Our unity isn’t just defensive, it’s offensive. Why? Because we’re a put-on-display community. Put another way, we’re big fans of show and tell. 🙂
May we continue to put on display the unity Christ—and only Christ—gives to a broken but redeemed people!