Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Something in the middle

"I'm torn between two desires:  I long to go and be with Christ, which would be far better for me.  But for your sakes, it is better that I continue to live." (Philip. 1:23-24) 

Life is always full of choices. When you say, "yes" to something it often means having to say, "no" to another. When you say, "yes," to something if often means having to stop something else. But there is always something in the middle. There is that awkward or often stressful time of the in between. 

Trying to keep myself positive I began thinking of things in the middle. The white creamy part between an Oreo or a Whoopie Pie or a Twinkie. The marshmallow and chocolate between two graham crackers in a S'more. Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun - a.k.a. - yes, I know your singing it now - the theme song for my favorite show - the Big Mac. I can't believe I still remembered that. I haven't had a Big Mac in years. 

If you think about it there are numerous opportunities to celebrate that which is in the middle. 

I don't know the future of my life but if I should live to 120, I'm just shy of the middle. My life is in transition. I'm still pastoring a church in Bernville but hired to pastor a church in Indiana. It's a bit taxing. Not to mention having to pack up the house at present. Longing to go but needing to stay focused for the  good of the flock. Longing to savor the deep relationships made here but longing to start something new. 

You can almost hear that same sentiment in the voice of the Apostle Paul. Tired of the prison cells, the beatings, the travel, the cold - how he longed to go home to be with Jesus. Yet, here he writes to his crown, his joy, his motivation for getting that stiff body around every morning to go out and do it again - to share the good news of Jesus, to see people saved from hell and to a vibrant life with God. Just one more, Lord. Just one more. Yet, I'm torn between the two. Perhaps Paul felt like he was a bit in the middle. 

At the time of this writing we have 5 baptisms coming up this Sunday and a potential to bring in 9 new members. It brings us such great joy to think that God would allow us to have some sort of eternal impact on the lives of the people that we serve. It brings us great joy to know that God is adding to the church not because we were there (perhaps that was the initial reason) but because God is doing something supernatural at St. Thomas. 

All I know is that sometimes it good to get to the middle.