Mid-Week Musings from Lead Pastor Todd Malone
Longview Community Ministries Food Drive
Rebecca Simcox visited with Longview Community Ministries yesterday. They shared with her that they need canned foods and especially peanut butter. Several local schools are extending their Christmas breaks. This creates challenges for families who rely on school meals to feed their children. Longview Community Ministries is helping those families meet their need by collecting canned goods and peanut butter. LCM emphasized peanut butter because it is popular with children. Non-perishable canned goods will be very helpful as well.
We will set up a collection point in the church lobby starting this Sunday. Please bring non-perishable canned goods and peanut butter to help these families.
We live like Old Testament prophets – not in our food or fashion choices or mode of transportation. Most of us do not have their relational styles or access to royalty. We live like Old Testament prophets by looking forward. We live in hope.
The Old Testament prophets lived in the hope that Messiah would come. When he came, he would restore God’s people, give them a home, and do mighty works through them. The Messiah has come. Jesus has restored our relationship with God, He has brought us together as a family, and He continues to work through us.
But the work is not complete. Like the Old Testament prophets, we live in hope that Jesus will come. He will return and complete that work. As Slade said, Jesus fulfills our hope and gives us hope. Jesus’ first coming set in motion the fulfillment of the promises they longed for. We are blessed to experience that fulfillment in part. And we continue to look ahead with certain expectation that the promises will be completed in full.
I pray that our world and community would move beyond wishing to hoping. Slade reminded us on Sunday that hope is confident expectation. A wish does not require confidence or even expectation. Wishes capture what we would like to happen, not what we expect to happen. 2020 brought out many of our society’s wishes: racial justice, an end to the pandemic, economic and political stability, and a reprieve from natural disasters. We could list many more, but that’s a good start. What we really wish for, the wish under the wishes, is a deep sense of well-being. We want to know we will be okay.
Unfortunately, a world without Christ does not know how to turn that wish into hope. They do not know how to move from longing to confident expectation. I am praying that this Christmas the deep wish for well-being will rise to the surface for my friends and family who do not know the Lord. In other words, I am praying that they become consciously aware that they are not okay, that things are not the way they are supposed to be.
I am praying that in seeing that they are not okay, they will recognize the Christians around them who live with confident expectation that God is at work. I pray that they will see in FBCers people who have confident expectations of their well-being, not because of circumstances, but because their hope is in Jesus.