Increase. When I look back over this past year, that is the word that comes to mind. God has given us an increase. We have seen an increase in reaching, with people coming to faith, attending our gatherings, joining our membership, and making their way into Life Groups. We have seen an increase in teaching through our ministries as more children, youth, men, and women are encountering Jesus. We have seen an increase in training through Essentials as people are equipped for life and mission. We have seen an increase in our sending capacities as we start and strengthen churches in Utah, the D.C. metro area, and Africa through our church planting partnerships, and as we train future pastors through our pastoral residency program (now entering its second year). We have sent out families to live and work with our partners, and we have mobilized teams to serve in short term opportunities. We have also seen an increase in generosity. As a result, our debt has been eliminated, and new initiatives have been funded. Most of all, it seems to me that we have seen an increase in God’s presence among us in our weekend gatherings and in our Prayer and Songs services. We know that God is fully present in all places and all times, but in certain places and at certain times, he gives his people a special nearness and sense of his presence. I feel we are in a season of that and we continue to ask God for more, for increase.
Increase is the language of the gospel. Abounding and fullness isS the way the New Testament normally characterized believers. New Testament believers are described as abounding in hope, in every good work, in love and knowledge, and in every situation. They are described as being full of the Spirit, full of good works, full of grace, faith, and power, and filled with all the fullness of God. Abounding, fullness, increase.
This is what we want to celebrate at our next Members’ Meeting and Annual Conference on September 29 from 5-7pm. We will celebrate in singing and prayer, introduce new members, give some important updates and share the key objectives we are focused on for this next season. We will also present our 2019-2020 budget to be voted on by our members. At the conclusion of our evening, we will have a dessert fellowship in the atrium.
These are my favorite moments together at CATC. Membership means something to us as a Church. We are a family, following Jesus together and commending him to the world. I want to encourage you to make it a priority to join us for this special night, September 29, from 5-7pm.
Hope to see you there!