On the Journey

Last year, as part of our 60th anniversary celebration, we unveiled a new logo along with the words: “Come Share the Journey, Grow in His Footsteps.”   It frames our calling as Memorial Baptist Church as one part of the bigger work that God is doing across the world and in Fond du Lac, WI.

As we emerge from a time of prayerful reflection and rest as a church, it’s good to remember those things that are important to how and why we live out our faith together, so that as we move forward, we are guided by the things God has taught us and continues to unpack for us along the way.

Come – Our faith flows from the ways that out of love, God has invited us into relationship, into a new family and community, into a new way of life, and into a mission.  And we carry that invitation forward into our community, nation and world, saying to all around us: “Come.  God is calling; you are invited and welcome.”

Share – In this life of faith, we are reminded that God blesses us not only because God loves us, but also so that we may be a blessing to others.  This is true spiritually as well as in material things.  We all have something to share from ourselves that is needed by others, and we all have needs that God uses others to provide for.  Faith is not meant to be private, and life is not meant to be lived in isolation.

The Journey – Faith is informed by our understanding and the things we believe, but faith itself is how we live and trust in light of that.  Faith has to be lived out.  It is where, metaphorically, “the rubber meets the road.”  Seeing faith as a journey reminds us that wherever we start is less important than where we are heading.  It reminds us that there will be twists and turns, ups and downs, and sometimes detours and wrong turns.  It reminds us that like a road trip, part of the blessing is the journey itself.  It also reminds us that God is with us along the way, and if we follow, will see us safely home.

Grow – Sometimes we’re tempted to think of faith as a binary thing: we either have it or we don’t.  We’re saved, or we’re not.  Yet Paul also talks about growing, maturing – being transformed into the image of Christ.  For those who don’t know God, growth is an invitation to trust, to come to know the One who created and sustains and heals us.  For followers of Jesus, it is a reminder that discipleship is a lifelong process, one in which we are to help each other along the way as the Spirit of God guides us.

In His – As Christians, our faith engages the mind and the heart, but it finds its root not in philosophy or spirituality, but in a Person, a God who reveals God’s very self to us in Jesus.  In the birth, life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus, we find God’s character and love revealed.

Footsteps ‑ And in Jesus we also see what it means to be truly human.  Jesus shows us what God is like, and Jesus shows us what we have been created to become.   Jesus makes possible our new life through His death and resurrection, and invites us to follow and be a part of God’s mission, proclaiming in word and action God’s story, God’s love, and the new creation of God’s community in the world.

Blessings on the way,

Pastor Brian