Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin."
- Zechariah 4:10 NLT
- Zechariah 4:10 NLT
Often we compare ourselves with others. It's easy to compare homes, families, careers, churches in general, and even specific aspects of a church. Often in comparison we fail to realize all the contributing factors of the dynamics we are comparing.
It seems today couples want to start with an instant home like their parents who have worked a lifetime to create. Ministers aren't comfortable beginning with a simple start. They want to begin with a ready made band and worship team, a fully organized outreach team, and a functional Sunday School staff. Unfortunately we are not comfortable waiting for the normal maturing process to promote healthy growth. On the contrary it is easy to look for a quick fix to promote rapid growth. While CUPC is a very vibrant growing church in all reality it is a very young church. Hence, there are limitations on the church due to its young age. We do not have the cash flow nor resources that many older churches have. We are still acquiring buildings, land, and vehicles. Often these demands create undue pressure.
Young couples don't want to have dinner guests because they feel their home is inadequate. Pastors are embarrassed to share their real results of praying and knocking doors for months and not having a single convert. Rather they prefer giving a record attendance of a special day when they had a guest minister, friends, and family from other churches to support the cause.
Why is it that people feel compelled to despise small beginnings? Yesterday I visited every Sunday School class. Each class was filled with more students than our congregation on the first day we had service in Conroe. The sanctuary was filled and we had many visitors. Our band and praise team comprised more members than our original service. Last night our church was packed. While I marvel at the blessing of God on CUPC I must be honest it has not always been this way.
Thankfully we didn't despise small beginnings and quit in despair. We continued even in difficult times. Our Sunday School began with me teaching with a visitor infant on my hip and teaching Trent (age 3), Redonia (age 4) and even a 7th or 8th grader. A big Sunday was 6 students. Today we had 87 in our classes excluding the adults in the sanctuary.
Our first service we had 12 persons in attendance including our 4. Tonight we had more than 13 on our stage. Friday night Trent took 34 persons to Blitz in Lufkin. Years ago that would have been a Sunday night crowd to rejoice about. My first day to bring children to church I brought 2. Yesterday the bus I was on had over 20 children. In fact yesterday we began a second route with a new bus crew.
Allow me to be an encourager today. Often people read this blog and want to know what we are doing to bring about the revival we are experiencing. Let me simply say we have endeavored to obey the scripture and not despise small beginnings. Be thankful where you are today and do the best you can do! One day you will open your eyes and things will be different...