Many of you know that this weekend is the launch of Harvest Brantford, a new church in Brantford, Ontario where my husband has been called to serve as lead pastor. What some of you don’t know, is that he is also battling pneumonia.
And I wondered why.
Why would God allow him to be sick right now? Not just sick, but so sick that he missed many important meetings and events leading up to launch.
My husband answers that question in a timely message sent out to our Brantford core members. He says:
Finally, thank you to all of you who have been praying for me over the past few days. I have been overwhelmed (in a good way) by the text messages, emails, Facebook messages, and other expressions of grace that you have extended to me. It was extremely hard for me to stay home on Sunday morning because I wanted so much to be with all of you. And yet, this experience has affirmed for me two very important truths at a very important time.
First, prayer makes a difference. As I write this (on Tuesday afternoon), I feel considerably better than I did on Saturday night and Sunday morning. There is no question that the prayers of God’s people have moved God’s hand, and I am deeply thankful to all of you who prayed for me. Please continue to pray that the Lord frees me from a cough that won’t seem to let go.
The second truth I have seen again through this is that JESUS CHRIST is building His church.
Not a man. Not a small group of people. Not a program. Only Jesus.
I find great freedom in knowing that while I have responsibility, it’s ultimately not up to me.
Or you. So many of you have prayed long and worked hard so that this group could be at this point. I thank the Lord for every one of you. You have been used in many God-glorifying, Christ-exalting, Holy Spirit-empowered ways.
But remember: It’s not up to you.
It’s up to Him. Only Jesus can build His church. Only Jesus WILL build his church.
So we launch this weekend resting in the truth that our loving, compassionate, sovereign Saviour knows what we need, when we need it, and how best to give it to us. Really . . . what better way for us to march into launch?
Anything of eternal value will happen only if he does it. Why?
Because he has the name that is above every name, in this age but also in the one to come (Eph 1:21). He is the head of the body, the church, the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, preeminent over all things (Col 1:18-19). He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power (Heb 1:3a).
And that’s why. My husband is not building this church. God is. And in a freeing way, this illness has lifted the responsibility from man and placed it upon the only shoulders strong enough to carry it. God’s.
To Him be the glory!