A good friend this morning challenged me as he asked how I was doing after 6 months of pastoring at Hope. As I carefully thought of my response I realized that painting too bleak a picture may cause him to panic. However, too positive a picture would cause him to doubt my authenticity…or sanity.
Over the past 6 months there have already been numerous surprises as Pastor at Hope. Funerals, day cares, new people coming, people leaving. We’ve had worship nights, Vacation Bible School, an amazing outpouring of people at Easter and numerous other events.
Of course, we have also seen personally the ups and downs as well! Bringing Lillie into our house has had its share of challenges and blessings as well. Carissa and I have been surrounded by so much love, support, and prayer from the Hope Family that we can’t even fathom how we would’ve handled this transition! I have a pile of Thank-You notes on my desk right now to hand out to numerous people. But, thank you to all the support and prayers from the congregation!
There are even some events that I can see on the horizon that I’m personally very excited about. This June I have been able to take a large step back and assess what God is brewing in and through the lives of Hope Church. I can see new services, new ministries, and new opportunities on the horizon.
Without a doubt many have received a marvelously written letter by our Deacon Board. Ministry transitions cause some to seek out new opportunities. Hope has always been a generous congregation. Far beyond what other churches might consider, Hope has been a leader in giving. I have no doubt based on the character of our congregation that we will all rise to the giving challenge that is before us.
In considering our challenge, let us lead in an abundance mentality versus a scarcity mentality: we have an abundance of opportunity as a church on the Southwest part of Lincoln. We have an abundance of amazing leaders. We have an abundance of experience in highs and lows. And, we have an abundance of resources to share as an entire congregation. Many other churches would be thinking out of scarcity mindset which paralyzes ministry growth: there is only so much out there so we must hoard and stop growing.
Out of Scripture and in real life remember: healthy things grow.
Hope is regaining its health as a church. Know that in the possible opportunities and the looming challenges, I see God working in and through our church body. As a leader, I seek these things which I see throughout Scripture:
Blessings and God’s love,
Scott Martin is pastor at Hope Community Church.