Summary: Great is God’s faithfulness!
A common source of challenge in life is commitment as illustrated in the following story:
The church choir director was frustrated with the sporadic attendance of all the choir members for rehearsals for the Christmas Choral Concert. At the final rehearsal he announced, “I want to personally thank the pianist for being the only person in this entire church choir to attend each and every rehearsal during the past two months.”
At this, the pianist rose, bowed, and said, “It was the least that I could do, considering I won’t be able to be at the Christmas Choral Concert tonight!”
Thank goodness for cassette and CD accompaniment tracks! I am very glad that our Easter choir was very faithful in their attendance through the practice season and that we had a wonderful cantata two Sundays ago. And that they had a tape to sing with! But, in a humorous way the story does illustrate the challenge of commitment in our lives. All of us face the challenge of balancing the various commitments in our lives and sometimes it truly is a challenge to fulfill them.
I would like to suggest this morning that one important component of celebrating our past and embracing our future in Christ is commitment. We are seeking financial commitment to the continued and future ministry of our church through pledges (beyond one’s tithes and offerings) over the next three years. But this morning we need to look behind and beyond that commitment to the reasons for making them in the first place. And a place to start is with thinking about the issue and importance of faithfulness.
There are a whole host of people through the history of our church who have exhibited faithfulness in their lives and service. They’ve been pastors and laypersons. They’ve been young and old. They’ve been kids and teens. Their faithfulness influenced many people in ways large and small. And some of us here this morning are the direct result of their faithfulness. And all of us here are the indirect result of their faithfulness.
What were they faithful to? Well, for starters we can say the church and its mission. They were taught and they embraced the beliefs and practices of the Church of God and attempted, with the Holy Spirit’s help, to live out those beliefs and practices no matter where they were – here at church, at home, at school, in the workplace – everywhere they were. And God, through the teachings of the church and the Bible and through the obedient walk that was nurtured by the Holy Spirit, planted and nurtured faithfulness in their lives and used it to continue the ministry and mission of this church.
They were faithful to their own place of service. Some of those who we think of this morning taught Sunday School for years. Some played the piano or organ or led the singing. Other served on the Trustee’s or as an usher or in the nursery. Some served in one area of ministry for their entire time of service and others served in many different areas. And they served faithfully through easy times and hard times. They served in times of world conflict and in times of significant peace. They served faithfully.