Updated: Jan 14, 2021
"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect" (Romans 12:2).
It is encouraging to know that God's plan you, your family, and His church is good, pleasing, and perfect. I need to be reminded of this truth because for many of us 2020 did not feel good, pleasing, and perfect. But this I know: God is sovereign in all things and His perfect plan cannot be thwarted.
When I think of God's plan, I think of Jesus. "For God so loved," right? Jesus was God's perfect plan to demonstrate His love and redeem the world. And just like 2020, the life and ministry of Jesus didn't all look good, pleasing, and perfect. Think about the cross...did that look good in the moment? Jesus' followers mourned after their leader was crucified, believing the man they loved had been defeated. But God's plan was not in jeopardy.
Jesus rose from the grave. He defeated death. The very moment humanity looked at Jesus and saw defeat, Jesus was defeating sin and securing our greatest victory. Even in the darkest valley, His plan remains good, pleasing, and perfect.
God's plan to redeem humanity was to send His Son so that we may experience forgiveness and life in His name. This is the message of the gospel, written and fulfilled by Jesus, Author of our faith.
But God's perfect plan has a second step, and it involves us. After Jesus resurrected, He went back to the Father. The defining work of the gospel had been completed, but the message had not yet been sent to the world.
Jesus was no longer with His disciples, but before He left He gave His followers instructions to be "senders." Jesus commanded them to go, teaching the whole world the good news about salvation.
The Father's perfect plan of redemption has two steps and involves two persons of the Trinity. The Son came to author the gospel, and the Holy Spirit came to empower the Church to send the gospel message to the world.
We are the Church. We are empowered. We are sent.
Connection Church Athens will begin a series on January 10 walking through the book of Acts. Acts is Luke's record of the Church's beginnings, the coming of the Holy Spirit, early Church practices, and the incredible, culture-changing fruits of gospel ministry.
We believe Acts holds incredible value for the church today because the early church is a blueprint for today's church. Our goal is to keep the main thing the main thing: we want to enjoy God's grace and extend His glory. This is the Church's purpose. Believer, this is your purpose.
Join us as we journey through Acts and learn what God expects of us as we live sent.