Friday, September 11, 2015

A Farm, A Big Party, and Our Future

This place was once a farm. The John Deere tractor plowed the rich soil in the spring. A few days later the same tractor pulled a different attachment that drilled seeds an inch into the ground. In the early days the farmer would have manually walked the field and pulled the weeds. Or at least hired a few kids to do it. In more recent years the seeds were engineered to withstand a little Roundup, so the tractor got some more work with a different attachment.

Some farmers are religious. Some aren’t. But they all pray. They have no other choice. Their hopes and dreams are as fragile as a butterfly’s wing. All their chips are on the table and they don’t know what hand they will be dealt. The right amount of rain at the right time means abundance. Too much rain, too little rain, big hail, and high winds are all disaster.

In the fall the corn and the beans were harvested. The farmer feeds the world. A twenty-three acre plot of land in eastern Nebraska can feed a lot of people for a long time.

I remember sitting across the table from some real estate professionals, an attorney, a couple of engineers, and the representatives of the bank who owned the property. They were talking about things my schooling in theology and languages didn’t train me to understand. Thankfully, I was surrounded by some of our people who understood these things and then some. A light clicked on in my head much brighter than the overhead lights in the crowded conference room. 

It is still going to be a farm. The fertile ground is now holy ground. More feeding and better feeding is going to happen than ever before. The meal won’t be corn and beans, but the bread of life and the living water. Children will be loved, developed, and mentored. Parents will be supported. People will discover purpose and passion. Friendships will be forged. Relationships will be restored. The lonely will be embraced. The addict will find recovery. The overwhelmed will get some rest. The sinner will receive forgiveness. The scoundrel and the saint and all those in between will be equipped for service. Words of grace will be spoken. Prayers will be prayed. Songs will be sung. Baptisms and weddings will happen. Communion will be served. It’s all a feast fit for a king in honor of the King.

Today we worship on our property. Twenty-three acres of holy ground set apart for God’s purposes. We are going to baptize many people. We are going to welcome dozens of guests. We are going to eat together, hear God’s Word, love our kids, pray, and connect with one another. It’s who WE are and it is what WE are going to do. 

Your faithfulness and God’s abundance have provided this property. This fall WE will take a huge step forward in developing this property. I hope all of us take a little time this morning to pray and dream. We have had some great days, but our best days are in front of us.

In Christ,


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