Jennifer and I plan to see a musical in Louisville tonight to celebrate her birthday. A neat angle on this is the opportunity well have through an old friend to get a backstage tour after the show. Clearly, the props and the people will look much different on stage than they will from our seats. While the nearness to the action will be great, well also find that nothing looks quite as real when separated from staging and lighting and song.
I think there is some application here for our revival. There is something staged about a revival week, in that we plan them, organize them, and ask people to prepare for their parts. We are not Quakers entering a room and sitting in silence until someone shares a word from the Lord. (Wouldnt that be an interesting Sunday morning?) We believe that God is experienced through these parts and people, Scripture readings and hymns, sermons and song. Because we believe this, we organize around them.
But there is something else afoot. Our real hope is an encounter with God. Our real thirst is a friendship with God. Our real prayer is the ability to see God in our time and place and need and joy. That is what we are seeking behind the props of people, musical selections, and sounds. As much as we show up in good spirits, there is a dogged determinationlike Elijah at the cave in I Kings 19that wants nothing less than a pure encounter with God. This is more than possible in our revival meetings, by the way.
Ironically, this behind-the-scene experience can and should be common. Sighting God behind the people and music is perhaps the only way to enjoy the people and music in church. We cannot make mini-idols of favorite people and favorite music and seasons in church life. God is way more than these favorites. No, the real work is to look behind the curtain. He is there. In fact, He is waiting. Keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep search-ing, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the doors will be opened to you. For everyone who ask receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. (Matthew 7:7-8)
Please join us for the revival week and our goal of seeking Him together.
T Whites Run Baptist Association
Annual Meeting at First Baptist
It is our turn to host this meeting of churches. Friday eve is a worship service, with our musicians bringing music for the event. Saturday morning is a business session and sermon. We provide the space, the music, and refreshments on Friday eve and prep for a lunch on Saturday. All are welcome.
T Read-thru-the-Bible Schedule
The next ten weeks of our schedule is in this newsletter and available in the church at the entrances. Keep up the great effort! There is little to compare to the experience of seeking God in the solitary practice of reading Scripture. Read with faith, with patience, and with prayer.
T Fall Retreat for Youth: 11/30-12/1
See Jay for details.
Fall Revival October 14-17
Sun: 8:30/11:00 Mon-Wed: 7 PM
It is time for our annual revival.
What exactly should we expect?