I was very, very nervous last night and feeling wholly inadequate for the task of bringing God’s Word to the “4 Amarillo” assembly at First Baptist. Alone with our God in the worship center here at Central yesterday afternoon and then an hour later with Steve and Judy, John Todd and Kami, and Kevin in meaningful prayer, I was almost overcome with the significance of what God was doing with us and through us for the Kingdom here in Amarillo. It would be an historic night, yes. It would be uplifting to all those gathered. And it would be important on about seventy-nine different levels.
It was truly marvelous how our very different traditions and practices blended together so beautifully in praise to God. It was fascinating how our variations in theology and distinctions in belief melted almost seamlessly into a unified voice for re-orienting our priorities to love God and neighbor together. What a night!
It was interesting, too, that we CofC’ers were the last ones to leave the building last night. Typical, right? A full 30-minutes after the service concluded, there were still about 30 or 40 of us in the room, still talking, still laughing, still sharing life and processing together what we had all just experienced. Dan Baker, the worship minister at First Baptist, hollered at us as he walked out a side door, “Hey, you Church of Christ people! Just turn off the lights on your way out!”
It may take me two or three more of these posts to really process what happened yesterday and last night. As I told several people this morning, I’m still not sure where God is taking this and what’s going to happen over the coming months and years, but it felt / feels highly significant. In the meantime, for today, please indulge me while I address just my brothers and sisters here at Central:
I’m so proud to be your preacher. I’m so honored to represent you in settings like yesterday’s. I’m so proud of you for the warm welcome you extended to the senior pastor at First Presbyterian, Howard Griffin, and his family as he preached here at our place yesterday morning. I’m so proud of the way you are embracing our brothers and sisters in the other Christian denominations downtown. I’m so proud of the way you lead others by your singing, by your greeting, by your handshakes and hugs, by your great joy, and by your genuine expressions of God’s grace and Christ’s peace to everybody you meet. You represent our Lord very well. Very well. And I’m so honored to be your preacher.
Thank you for a spectacular day in our God’s Kingdom. Thank you.