Embracing Change, Embracing the Gospel

As I sit down and reflect on all that’s happening in the life of our church these days, I am truly amazed. There’s a lot going on! For one thing, I’m noticeably cooler in my office, as our new HVAC system is up and running. Kudos to Bill Jones, our Facilities Manager, Claude Sanford and the Buildings & Grounds Committee, and the Capital Campaign Construction Committee for all their hard work over the spring and summer to make this a reality. I’m looking forward to getting back into our sanctuary this coming Sunday, which also happens to be Rally Day, marking the arrival of another year in the life of this storied congregation.

I’m elated to welcome Heather Koontz and Rhonda McClain to our leadership team. You’ll find more information about them in this issue of Postscripts. Similarly, at a recent congregational meeting, you elected an Associate Pastor Nominating Committee, the first step in our church’s transition from a temporary associate position to a permanent, called one.

Our Weekday School is up and running, with lots of energetic children and caring teachers roaming the halls and bringing much joy and happiness with them. Looking ahead, I’m anticipating our Stewardship season this October, primarily because you’ll finally get to see the incredible 2015 Vision Statement your session created and adopted last spring. You’ll hear more about this from our Response Chairs, Phil Blount and Lynette Neel, in just a few weeks – but I can tell you that it has me tremendously excited about Trinity’s future.

Wow. That’s a lot to digest! Like the old saying goes, if there’s one thing you can count on in life, it’s change!

Change has always been a given in the life of the church – and in most every instance, its greatest challenge. Humans are creatures of habit, and we naturally gravitate toward what is familiar. Even in the days of Jesus this was true – just read Matthew 5-7. The religious community of Jesus’ time had become so stagnant that it no longer fulfilled its mission of working to build God’s kingdom on earth. It was not the living body of faith it was created to be. It was an institution.

And then Jesus stood on a mountain and proclaimed: Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish, but to fulfill. And for the rest of his famous sermon, Jesus painted a radical picture of how change would be the hallmark of this new thing – one where enemies are loved, cheeks are turned, and the lilies are considered.

So change is not only inevitable, it’s something we should embrace. The reason? At the root of change lies a constant: Everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like building a house on rock. Change doesn’t have to be haphazard. As long as we root ourselves in God, we do not need to fear change. Next time your life is overwhelmed by change, I encourage you to read Matthew 5-7 and be reminded of all that sustains you through whatever life dishes out.

And as our church experiences a wave swell of change, let’s be thankful for the “rocks” in our midst. Let’s be thankful for our staff for partnering with us in ministry, our session for their spiritual leadership and vision, our Buildings & Grounds and Capital Campaign Committees for working hard to see that we have a facility in which to enact that vision, our Weekday School for their commitment to this important ministry, and our Personnel Committee and APNC for stewarding our staffing transitions. And know I am thankful to each of you, as you prepare to renew your commitment to this church and the good things God desires to carry out here in the coming year.

Change is inevitable in the church and in our lives. May we welcome change as a sign of God’s never-ending activity in our midst!

Always your pastor and friend,

Steve Lindsley
Senior Minister