Acts 1:8 You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you…
In the past couple of months, I’ve preached a couple of times about a shift we are making as a congregation, using an image presented by author and church leader Joan Gray. We are moving from being a row boat church to being a sail boat church. Row boat churches are people powered – they are limited by the resources they already have – the money already in the bank, the people already in the boat, the sense of direction they can come up with together, their knowledge of the waters before them. In contrast, sail boat churches are powered by the Spirit – they raise up the sails and seek to discern the winds movement and position themselves just so to catch the Spirit. The Spirit then powers their boat – it’s a renewable source of energy that has no limits. It’s not dependent on what already is, but opens a church up to what could be.
Jesus tells the disciples to get in the sailboat in his last interaction with them before he is ascends into heaven. He tells them to wait for the Spirit and that it is only by the Spirit’s power that they will answer the call God has for them.
As I find myself sitting in our own sail boat, looking out at the waters ahead, there is a so much that I know we will need to do in order to answer the call that God has for us. While at first glance that work may seem overwhelming for a church of our size, I find myself not being anxious about it. That is simply because it is so clear that the Spirit is the source of all of this and I know and trust with every fiber in my being that it is by the Spirit’s power that we will move into this next chapter of our church’s life together.
So, let us be united in prayer.
Let us pray that we would all find ourselves sitting in a sail boat, not a row boat.
Let us pray that we would not be limited by what already is,
but instead imagine what could be.
Let us pray that the Spirit would continue to come upon us in this season.
Let us pray that we would trust the Spirit’s power to provide us everything we need,
to show us the way, and to take us exactly where God is calling us to go.