On Sunday my three daughters sang a very special song. It is one that their mother used to sing when she was their age. It was beautifully done.
For 25 years they have come to know this church as a place where family and friends came to discover the love of God. That's a special thing. That's what the song acknowledges. God is always watching over us. That's been the message of our ministry at First Baptist for the last quarter of a century. Times have certainly changed. The world around us has become less personal and more secular. The truth is that my girls have lived their lives going against the tide of society. Over the last twenty five years a generation has grown up without the benefit of a church relationship and the knowledge of God's love.
Yet we still preach Christ and are finding ways to introduce him to the people we know. It is no longer the job of the church to do this. Not the church as in the place where we go on Sundays. The call goes out for every one of us as the body of Christ, as individuals, to be ambassadors for Jesus. Yes, that call has been going out for centuries but today it is more important than ever. Each of us has a sphere of influence that God has given us. We can share love of Christ by following his example and living to his glory.
The truth is that we may be the only contact some people have with God. The way we live our lives, the grace, love, hospitality and truth that is exhibited by our lives will be the message that they hear.
On Sunday the reporter from the Norwich Bulletin asked me what my message was today and how it had changed in 25 years. I told her it was simple and it hadn't changed. God loves you and me. That's the message that the world needs to hear. God still cares and he wants to do something about it.
That's why I love this song. (Never mind the fact that this version was sung by three of the most special people in my life.) So take what it says to heart and then share the good news with someone you know.