It's February 10; Good Morning Union

“Go into all the world and preach the gospel… and I WILL be with you ALWAYS.”                Matthew 28: 19,20

As I looked at Matthew yesterday I was reminded of the text I am going to use this morning for worship for the college board meeting. (Yes I am still in Seattle for the One Project but I’m going to do the worship over the internet!! A first for me!) Dr Wagner asked if I could share some thoughts about YOU, especially focusing on our SM and TF volunteers. THAT is a pretty easy assignment, to share how I am PERPETUALLY blessed as I watch all of you grow and live out your love for Jesus!

I’m going to do it in the context of my verse today—a calling and promise.

The calling- “Go into all the world and preach the gospel.” (use words if necessary!) As we talk often at Union about identifying your calling, when this seems a bit nebulous and ambiguous then I start with this—I am called, by God, to go. That’s a conscious decision to motion, to activity, to action. When I struggle with identifying my calling it’s usually at a time when I have ceased from doing something with who I am and what I have in my life and have chosen to internalize and protect myself from the world rather than reaching out and giving to the world SO THAT God can use what He has put within me to bless others. God’s solution? Go! Go into ALL the world. With that I can be an SM in some remote part of the world, or I can be a Task Force worker in some not so remote part of the US—OR I can do something with what I have been given to bless my roommate, my classmate, or the cashier at the gas station! He doesn’t say WHERE I have to go; He just says, “GO!” That’s my calling, in its most basic form. I am called to go for God; and so are you.

And the promise? “I WILL be with you ALWAYS.” “You go and I’ll be there with you.” Now, here was my ah-ha moment this morning. I’m not sure how far to take this yet so please treat my shared moment with you with lots of room to grow and edit, ok? Maybe, just maybe, when I am not feeling God’s presence in my life in a very real way, MAYBE it has something to do with whether I am “going” (or not going) someplace for Him with my life. I don’t know how far to take that yet, but I’m “just sayin’--- He did say that IF I go, He WILL be with me, so if I don’t sense that He is with me maybe it’s because I’m not going somewhere for Him. Remember “going” does not necessarily mean I need to plan a trip, it just means I’m in intentional motion- for Him. I pray for open eyes so I can see the person in my life that needs a kind word or an act of kindness (preferably a random one! At least to start with!) I ask God to bring people into my life that I can bless with the gifts He has given me; and I ask Him to guide my words, my thoughts, my actions, so they reflect clearly who I am serving and which way I am going. I connect with Him so I have something from Him to give to others. And then I walk out of my room, or into the Student Mission office, and I GO! Somewhere, anywhere, just go with God and for God. And THEN I can watch the promise be fulfilled- God WILL be with me—and He’ll be with you too! That’s a promise, IF I just get in motion for Him!

Have a great day with God’s calling and His promise,

Pastor Rich

PS The Union College Board of Trustees meets this morning. If you see some “elderly” folks on campus tell them thank you for all they do to keep Union going strong!

PS “Real Talk” with Nic Barnett and friends. Join them @ 9pm in the Rees Hall rec room for an hour of open talk about real issues facing young adults today. Guys have to check in at the front desk and be escorted down!!

Quote for the day: “We don’t do things to get to heaven, we do things to bring heaven down to earth.”               Jo Darby (presenter at the CM Convention)