As churches consider what next looks like after the pandemic, it is effortless to be overwhelmed by all the rapid changes in our lives and the world around us. When you compound these changes with the disappointment of where we were before the pandemic, striding in a churchwide discernment process around strategic growth, these can be immobilizing thoughts.
However, we are not the first church to face uncertainty when we were so sure about who we are and what we were doing before all this started. Also, we certainly will not be the last church to face such ambiguity.
I’m reminded of a story for the Book of Acts, in which Paul and Barnabas successfully lobby the Apostles to not only include Gentiles into the church but get rid of the prerequisite circumcision requirement. Known as the Jerusalem Council in Acts 15, we learn that this monumental discernment process was then met with a Spirit-led decision to send Paul and his companions back to the churches they started to bring encouragement and teaching.
With the holy sanctioned decision of the Apostles, Paul and his companions set off to do as they were told, only to be met by a roadblock from the Spirit of God. It was frustratingly simple. God was not letting Paul go and do what the Apostles thought he where he supposed to go and do what he was supposed to do.
We learn that night that God gave Paul a vision of a man from Macedonia beckoning him to come to preach the Gospel to his people. With faithful agility, Paul followed the leadership of God into new possibilities. The results were the Gospel spreading like wildfire into Europe.
We are in uncharted territory. No one has been here before. But the Spirit of God, filled with wisdom, power, understanding, vision, and courage, can fill us with such things if we are willing, humble, and faithful.
Next is navigated with faithful agility. Are we open to the possibilities of what God has in store? Are we humble to be shaped and formed by God’s guidance? Are we faithful enough to boldly step forward together in where God is leading us?
We are more agile than you think.