We have so many people who serve at Covenant Grove Church, and I don’t know exactly how to find the words to say enough – THANK YOU to them. We are a church plant – and our goal is to connect people to God, especially those who do not have a church home. It has been such a blessing over the last 4 years to serve with such incredible people. The time and talent that is poured out every week is incredible – in fact it overwhelms me and I am overwhelmed with gratitude for all of you who serve Jesus at our church.
I also know there are some who read this who don’t attend Covenant Grove, but they serve faithfully at their churches. There also might be a few people who are not serving in ministry, or who used to serve but now aren’t. I thought I would take a few minutes to share some thoughts about serving.
– Serving makes a difference. The bottom line is that serving makes a difference. One of our favorite verses is 1 Corinthians 15:58: “So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.” As we have served together – lives have been changed, our church has grown from 40 to 170, and every week we transform a school auditorium into a church – wow! Serving takes time – and that is hard in our busy schedules – but there are not many things we will do every week that can eternally change someone’s life. Serving Jesus is worth our time.
– Serving helps the team. So often people who serve feel like they are serving alone. People don’t show up. People make promises and then bail. Serving can be hard and discouraging. Serving helps the team. Serving is showing up even when we don’t want to – and knowing that makes a difference not only to those we are serving, but also those we are serving with. Serving is ultimately about Jesus, obeying Him even when it is hard. This obedience has a huge impact on the people around you – it is a huge encouragement in faith when people make the hard choices and are not just a part of the church family when it is convenient.
– Serving changes you. Let’s face it – serving can be hard. When you just start to serve it seems like it is so hard to give your time. When you are leading it seems that others won’t be as committed as they promised. God uses serving to change us and grow us – that is why it is so important to serve. Serving is what God Himself did when He came to earth – serving is part of following Him and letting the selfish parts of our souls die. It is worth the time, and we learn patience with others we serve with, even as God has patience with us.
– Serving is for Jesus. C.S. Lewis wrote in the Screwtape letters how our faith is affected by trivial things like the weather or what we ate. The weather changes – and we feel a little more down – and then think God has abandoned us. There are seasons when we see the drive to serve go down – fall and spring! These are the seasons when the weather and light are changing – these affect our faith, but we can mature beyond seasonal faith. Serving is for Jesus – part of our relationship with Him. We serve because that is where He is leading us – to make a difference WITH Him, to share with others the hope we have from His love. We can keep the commitments we have made to Him even when the weather or our emotions or schedules change.
I am SO THANKFUL for the blessing to be able to serve with such incredible people. We have a wonderful and talented staff, we have growing Team Leaders and wise Leadership Council. We have over 100 people serving in ministry at our church. I am so excited – it is all about Jesus. And following Him we move forward into Fall – to transform people into Fully Devoted Followers of Christ!