22 Jul SummerLink Clemson – Finishing Strong
“Set your minds on the things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.” Colossians 3:2-4
In my Summer Link opportunity this summer, I had the opportunity to stay in Clemson and work with the local church (Crosspoint) here. I was able to see what goes behind the scenes for Sunday mornings; all of the preparation that goes behind bringing a Sunday morning service to fruition. We had staff meetings in which our team heard sermonettes centered around our core values at Crosspoint (Worship Exalts God, Fellowship Encourages Growth, Scripture Reveals Truth, and Sending Advances the Gospel). After these sermons, we would have meetings focused on how to live these themes out practically in our church. Each member of the team would be assigned a certain ministry area or two throughout the summer. After each staff meeting, we would go to a meeting concerning such ministries.
My ministry area was primarily kids. While working in the children’s ministry, I got to work with Josh Jones on planning events to draw families with their kids into our church. With the theme of fellowship encourages growth in mind, Josh made an effort to emphasize spreading the gospel within the home. In getting kids from around the community to come to summer events (such as Vacation Bible School, Camp in The City, and one-day social events) Josh intended to bring not just children, but whole families into the Crosspoint Fellowship. Our kids ministry team had the opportunity to knock on doors at apartment buildings, share the gospel, and invite kids to summer events. In doing this, we were able to minister to the needs of the local community (giving kids rides to the events, and getting families to come to events where there was food).
This summer I was able learn the importance of the gospel in the home. I was able to also see that ministry is often far more difficult than one would initially think. That is, part of living in a fallen world means that things do not always go as you have planned in your mind. You decorate, and things fall apart. You deliver food, but it takes you longer than you thought. It is easy to get discouraged and frustrated. Easy for one to let these struggles get the best of them and force them to come undone. But through such frustrations I was able to see what it really means to trust in God for the situation at hand. Often, when thinking about trusting in God, I think of trusting in God for the future, and for my life as a whole. At the end of the summer, however, I was able to understand how to trust in God for the now. This trusting in God, I realized, means not only knowing that God is sovereign over everything. It also means knowing that Christ Jesus went through the very struggle I am going through (be it depression or anxiety because of a frustrating dilemma), yet was without sin. And by going through this struggle without sin, He triumphed over it. In this triumph, we can have victory as well. Jesus conquered the wrongfulness of our hardships just as much as he conquered the wrongfulness of the sins that we commit against Him. We no longer have to be overcome by the problems and troubles in this world because Christ has freed us from their oppression. We can see Him who tells us, “Fear not, for I have overcome the world.” I learned this summer that I can have victory over these things daily more and more, and one day will no longer succumb to them.
“Therefore, we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly are being renewed day by day. For our light momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal weight of glory that far outweighs them all.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-17