As we begin 2021, things are, as they have been for a year now, still out-of-kilter. If anything, we, at New Hanover, have learned that adaptability is the name of the game! As of March 10, 2020, we had resolutely refused to even think about having video service broadcasts. Until we had our first live-streamed service on March 15, 2020. For some months now, we have had a YouTube channel (which I didn’t know was a thing until April 2020) with well over 100 videos of services and devotions. We had always featured our human connection heavy ministry as one of our greatest assets at NHPC. Now, people reflexively shy away from handshakes and hugs. Sunday morning was the time you got up early, scrubbed up and came to church. We are still at church on Sunday morning, but, for more of us than we would probably like to admit, we go in our favorite chair in the living room, dressed in our pajamas and with a hot cup of home-brewed coffee in our hands.
We know that will soon change, perhaps as early as late spring (keep praying). But the adapting will not stop there. Maybe one of the worse mistakes we can make right now is to assume things will be like they where on March 14, 2020. In fact, the world changed. A lot of it was pretty bad, but we learned many valuable things about ourselves and our society as a result.
One of the things we learned is how our faith helps in crises – both big and small. Our faith in Christ is one that is to lead us to the next thing, always – to doing away with things that separate us from God and one another and to constantly seek to be a better disciple of Jesus Christ.
Being a disciple means that we take on ourselves the disciple associated with loving, obeying and following Jesus Christ. That is what we do here at New Hanover. I think we have learned, over the past years that nothing is ever a sure thing in this life, so we have to depend on God. And although God is always the same, us humans are as changeable as… well… humans! Our knowing and following God is always subject to change because the there is a constant process of having the old, inadequate and partial ways we thought we knew God get swept away and replaced with something that we hope is closer to reality. Disciples know that this whatever this is will eventually become inadequate too, to be swept away and replaced with something better than that.
We invite you to join us at NHPC. For now on YouTube, but soon, we pray, in person as well. If you are looking for a place that loves God, is taught by the Scriptures and able to changed by God’s Spirit more and more into the image of Jesus – you’ve found it.