By Not Known
In 1856, God worked through some Scottish expatriates as they founded this church. Since then, we could see how God has been with us. With every generation carrying and building on from the last, from a small congregation of a few, we now have many. From what little resources the early generation had, we now have plenty. Indeed, let us give thanks to God for all we have and are today.
As we rejoice today, let us look at three reminders from scripture that will put us in good stead to move onward as a church.
First: Christ is the cornerstone of our identity. In Romans 3:19-28, it reminds us that only through Christ we are God’s children by faith. As we come together forming a local community, we are also part of the worldwide church with a unified purpose of spreading the Gospel. Sometimes we are bogged down with church life that ‘we’ become insular and inward looking. Let us remember that whenever we meet, our identity and purpose are much bigger than ORPC.
Second: The Gospel is our focus. As society and culture change over the last 155 years, so is our church. Imagine the shock of the early congregation if they were here at one of our special services to see the youth band or the guitar ensemble playing the prelude or offertory. Yet, if they were to listen to the sermon, they will find it familiar as it is still being preached and taught faithfully. In Galatians 2, Paul wrote that there are certain things he was wiling to give concession on, but the Gospel was not one of them. He is right! Our message must remain the same, but our communication should and can be different to meet the needs of this present age. Let us be firm on the gospel and be bold in using new ways to communicate the Gospel with our hearers.
Third: God will always direct us. Acts 16, while on their journey, God had prevented Paul and Silas from entering certain towns while eventually taking them towards Macedonia. Was God misdirecting them? No, God was directing them into new opportunities for the Gospel there! In 2 Corinthians 8, it shows us that Macedonia Christians eventually became a model of stewardship for other churches to follow. Our best-laid plans are pale in comparison to what God has planned. This does not mean that we take the planning out of ministry. Paul and Silas planned what they need to do, yet they were sensitive to the Spirit’s prompting. Likewise as we plan for ministry, we too need to pray for sensitivity to the Spirit’s prompting so that we will not miss out on our ‘Macedonian’ moments for the Gospel.
As we move on, let us keep these three reminders to heart: remain focused on Christ, his gospel, and depend on his leading in and out of our plans.
We thank God for his faithfulness. To God be the glory.