Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? Isaiah 43.19
There are new things happening all around us. Many people have just graduated from High School or College. There are others that are getting married during these summer months. We are celebrating the birthday of our country, which represents a new year to appreciate our freedom.
But there is one other “new thing” that is definitely going to affect my family more than any of these. In fact, most of you reading this will also be more affected by the fact that you have a new pastor than the other new things. It goes without saying that there are things for us all to learn and adjust to, but here are some of the new things that we can celebrate and anticipate together.
- We can all (perhaps, especially me) look forward to learning, stretching and changing in many ways. I am coming to Argos from a two-point charge. That means that for the last ten years I have been the pastor of two churches. Both of those churches are smaller than Argos UMC. Here is where we stretch. I have to learn to be a pastor in a larger church. Likewise, you will have to put up (at least initially) with my “country boy ways.”
- We can look forward to some awkward times of change and growth. I am thinking of this as a courtship. We have to get to know each other. I know that there are things that I will want to do differently than you are used to. I need to learn your traditions and stories. We will have to be patient with one another as we learn to get along.
- We should anticipate God working in our ministry together. I have learned to expect God to work in wonderful, marvelous and uncomfortable ways. He has asked me to do things that I have never wanted to do. Together we should plan on God pushing us to places that we have not been before and asking us to do things that will change us for eternity.
- We should expect God to change lives. I am planning on seeing God at work in Argos United Methodist Church. I know that he wants to be involved in our “new thing” together. I believe that I will grow in my relationship with him, that many people will begin new journeys of faith with Jesus and all of us will be challenged and transformed by his presence.
2 Corinthians 5.17 says, “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.” I am excited to see who Jesus is going to make new in our church. God will call someone into full-time ministry. Many people will be called to deeper levels of commitment, faithfulness and life in Christ. I can’t wait to see who will become a new creation.
God is infinitely creative. He is always making things new. I am looking forward to seeing what happens next.