Yesterday, I had coffee with a good friend and pastor. Like many pastors, he has had to lead his congregation forward while on one side voices were telling him to take a stronger stand to represent their convictions and the other side were those who seemed overly passive. He honestly said there were some days during the last year when he was tempted to choose a side, but he had a word from the Lord to be silent to those invitations and to keep moving forward.
Unknown to these voices was the advancement of his church that was taking place out of the spotlight of cultural angst and human opinion. His obedience aligned him with the calling and destiny of his church in a way he had not imagined. If those with their “solutions” could only sit down and talk with my friend, they would see the significant work God has been doing out of the glare and tumult of heated social comment.
We talked about a deconstruction taking place in the Church. Many of us who have been in positions of leadership for a long time now see the Lord deconstructing some of our ministry models. At first, fear and concern appeared because what we worked so hard to create, will not be the model of ministry or the system of support we will need to navigate into the future. The Lord is lovingly deconstructing what has become too familiar and manageable. He is not destroying ministries. He is taking apart what we have known to reduce our faith and way of doing ministry down to its bare and powerful minimums where we will be able to move and pivot with the Spirit without a lot of extra weight and structure.
Just before I began to write these words the Lord spoke a word of encouragement. “I am doing a new thing. It is not a new thing that will simply perpetuate previous definitions of what is new. Those definitions have led you to this moment and the need for this deconstruction. I am taking apart some of the things you built by assumption. Prepare your heart so I can work with you to construct something new. This new thing will make you ready to move with my Spirit when I initiate what I have planned. The fruit I am preparing will be sweet. Once you taste it you will understand why. Your abiding with me in this difficult time has revealed the depth of your love for me. I will honor that love.”