Dear Church Family,
What a journey. What an adventure. The time has come and the event is scheduled. On Sunday October the 23rd, we will rededicate our Sanctuary, foyer and Fellowship Hall for the service of the Kingdom of God! It’s been a long time coming and the members of our SUIT team are to be congratulated for their service, planning, decision-making and leadership. They are:
Rodney Chitty, Luther Ward, Mike Thompson, Jeanelle Coleman and Gabe Ramirez. Thanks too to Paula Chitty, Karen Ramirez and Margaret Thompson for their hours of work supporting the committee.
Years ago, I heard Pastor E.V. Hill preach the dedication service of the Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship’s new sanctuary. Dr Tony Evans is the pastor of that church. EV Hill pastored Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles, California from 1961 to his death in 2003.
As he began to speak, Pastor Hill asked the congregation what sort of building they would have. He suggested that a Monument would be appropriate. He mentioned the people who had come before, those who had begun the church alongside Dr Evans, those who had attended and led and those who had financially supported the project. Perhaps, he said, the building should be considered a Monument to their names and legacies and contributions.
Then, as only Pastor Hill could do, he turned a corner. “Rather than a monument,” he said, “Let us consider this building to be an Instrument.” When he said that, I was struck. AMEN! An Instrument is something with a purpose, a useful device, something that a skilled person takes up to wield towards a certain result. A paintbrush in the hands of an artist. A scalpel in the hands of a surgeon. A saw in the hands of a carpenter. A violin in the hands of a musician. An instrument is very different from a monument.
A monument: is carved in stone and doesn’t move, it’s cherished, it’s about the past, it’s kept pristine.
An instrument: is moving, is valued rather than cherished, is focused on today and gets dirty and worn.
Let me borrow these two words from Pastor Hill. In my heart, and I believe in the heart of the SUIT team, we did not remodel our building into a monument. We tuned up the instrument that is our building. We deeply desire for the Lord to use this building (and use His Church, the people of God) as an instrument in His skilled hands! If the building gets dirty, that means it’s being used. If the building makes relationships of discipleship, services of worship and studies of Truth happen, it’s being used like an instrument in the Hand of the Master. Praise God! That’s what church buildings are for!
Thanks to all of you who supported this project financially. Thanks for your collective patience and encouraging words as it has inched along.
God bless First Baptist Carrizo Springs for many years to come!
As I reread this, it puts all the busyness into perspective for me, again.
I thank GOD for the pastor He gave our church, -the ideas, the energy, the passion. May he see himself as GOD sees him as he continues to be an instrument here.