I was at the church this morning, doing some things and getting ready for the weekend gatherings. I noticed the little birds that were up underneath the car port were now gone. They got strong enough to fly away. I then thought of Rick’s message on gratefulness. I thought of how many people over the last 20 years have been nurtured, made strong, and have “flown away”. Some of our young people have entered into full time ministry , and mission fields. I thought of many of them, and I was thankful. I saw some other things on my walk.
- I saw the empty quiet building which a few days ago was full of children every morning learning the Word of God, and trust in Jesus. I walked to the front and remember dozens asking Jesus into their heart on Thursday. My heart is so thankful for all the volunteers, leaders, and Pastor Matt and Mandie Reinhart. I pray these children will follow the Lord, and their parents will help and lead the way.
- I walked on our new floors and remembered how many hands made it possible, so thankful for servant hearts.
- I watered our beautiful flowers, thankful for Deb and Harry Welch, planting and caring for them. I prayed for her healing as I know she has been sick, and am thankful for their life, that God brought them to Compelled.
- I put up the building plans for the Toledo Campus build out on the wall. So thankful for a church that is missional, and for what the Lord is going to do as we will have 3000 more sq. ft. for children’s ministry, and for Jennifer Perkins who has agreed to be the Children’s Ministry Director there! Praise God. Thankful for Pastor Tim and Amanda’s leadership, and for the faithfulness of Curtis and Iris Klotz and so many others! God is moving in so many lives there.
- I put up a certificate on our Global Outreach Missions board that we were 371st in the nation for Assembly of God churches in missions giving. That is out of 12,000 churches! Wow!
- I looked out the window at the playground God provided. I believed for years for one for the children and young families, he gave it to us. He took care of us…..again.
- I stepped into my office and looked at the pics of my family that line my walls. I am so proud of my children and thankful to God for who they are, and who they are becoming. Grateful for Justin, that God put in our lives. Said a simple pray for continued guidance, and protection from the enemy on their lives. another prayer of gratitude flowed without words from my heart.
- I watched Jeremy Whitmill, fixing the drain and door on his Saturday morning off, he made time for the Lord’s work to help his church. I am grateful that we really love, love, and serve.So many like him, make ministry here fun, enjoyable, and a blessing. We truly value serving. Our Father sees it all.
- I got something off my wife’s desk. I thought of our 29 years of marriage and ministry. I thought of all she does for Compelled, quietly, behind the scenes, unnoticed by most everyone, except the one who has His eye on the sparrow. What he sees in secret will one day be rewarded. I thought back on the sacrifices she made so we could plant Compelled, and the church could be strengthened. I thought of her ministry to our children, who are now young adults that love the Lord. I am thankful for her beauty, love, patience, and joy in which she lives out every day. I am grateful to have her by my side in life, as best friends, parents, and ministry partners.
- I went out and washed off my brother Steve’s memorial stone. I stood choked up as I thanked God for His life and his persistence in helping my life, and showing me Jesus. I am honored and humbled to have his fingerprints on my life and ministry. I pledged to “be about the Father’s business” on this earth, as he would encourage me. I relish the day we can eat some blueberry pancakes, have a rasberry mocha together, catch upon the years we missed with Pat, and live in eternity with Christ.
- I thought of God’s goodness to me, of his great mercy on my life. I am so undeserving to spiritually lead, be adopted into His family, and to have Him live in my life. I bowed my head in humility and thankfulness for Jesus, whose death and resurrection brought me forgiveness of my sins, the guilt of my sin, the punishment, consequences, and the deliverance from the ways of this world and self-destruction without Him. What a wonderful Savior I know.
Yes, I had quite a morning of revelation, and my heart is full of God’s Spirit. Yes, the birds are gone, but the ministry here is not, and neither is the power and presence of the Lord. I heed the word of Samuel the prophet to Israel in 1 Chronicles 12.24
“Only fear the LORD and serve Him in truth with all your heart; for consider what great things He has done for you.”