Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A God of Transformation

We serve a God Who's a specialist in transformation.

This came home to me a few months ago during a communion service with several pastors and elders in our denomination. I've been in dozens - probably hundreds - of communion services over the years and heard pastors talk about the body and the blood of Christ plenty of times. But for some reason it just "clicked" this time.

I realize that there are many differing views of what - if anything - happens during communion. Is it a sacrament or just an ordinance? Is it purely symbolic or does God "do" anything special in or through the elements of bread and wine?

In the Reformed tradition, we believe that Christ is spiritually present (tho' not physically, contra the Roman Catholic view) and that there is a genuine spiritual benefit to partaking. Ordinary bread and wine are set aside for extra-ordinary purposes. They are transformed into the (spiritual) body & blood - not just symbols representing the body & blood.

Then I began to think about it more:

God set aside ordinary paper and ink and transformed them into the written word of God.

In the Jewish calendar, the sabbath was Saturday. Sunday was just another day. God set aside an ordinary day - the first day of the week (Sunday) - and transformed it into the new sabbath.

Even today God takes ordinary words spoken by humans and transforms them into the sermons that change our lives and lead people into a grace-filled relationship with Christ.

The new heaven and new earth that we read about in Revelation are a transformed heaven and earth.

But even more importantly, He takes ordinary sinners like you and me and transforms us into forgiven sinners: the old has passed away; the new has come.

It's all about transformation!

That's what we at ACWI desire - to see our city, our state, and our nation transformed. Not by political influence or simple moral behavior. . . but through the transformative power of Christ working in and through people. . .Transformed people. . .People whose very lives have been transformed through that same power of Christ.

May that be our focus and purpose of ALL we do!

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