Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Last Service

This morning Woodcreek Bible Church held its last service. For a church to close, and hold its final service is a heavy moment. By "heavy" I imply it is not to be taken lightly in any way. Across America churches close all the time, but seldomly do they do so on purpose and with purpose. We had the privilege of knowing what our purpose was, the mission we're called to and the time frame we had to pursue it as a church body. As a result, we were able to conduct our final service with that purpose and mission in mind.

A church service though, conducted with the end in mind, is quite different from a regular one you might encounter on any given Sunday. It's one in which the worship reflects on what God has done in and through the church body over the course of its life. It's one where the communion table takes on a far more meaningful significance than it usually ever can. The sermon has a distinct commissioning flavor to it. While some aspects seem like finishing the course and completing the race, other parts point toward launching into new life.

I am particularly thankful though, that God enabled us to end well, and conduct ourselves with missional purpose. While such a service is heavy, it's not sad. Some may be saddened by the finality of it upon further reflection later on, the same sense of triumph should be shared by all. Many churches throughout America close all the time, but few close like this. It was glorious to behold.

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