Our missions conference at my church, an annual event we call Trinity Outreach Celebration, was PHENOMENAL this year! We had some great preachers with compelling stories, mission training, and a service day that worked our people all over the Augusta/CSRA.
What capped it all off was Sunday morning worship with some international music, an incredible band, and a huge youth choir singing Leeland's "Follow You." But it didn't end there as Rev. Nick Elliott, recently retired after 10 years leading the United Methodist Volunteers in Mission for the southeast, stepped up with a sermon that our church members are still talking about. One long time member and leader of the church, the type guy I appreciate because he isn't prone to empty flattery but tells the truth in love, said "I believe it was one of the most meaningful and effective services Trinity has had." That's astounding because Nick told the truth about hunger, disaster, and need in the world, and our response to this as followers of Christ. He didn't back off, as a matter of fact, it's the most uncomfortable many of us have been in worship in some time. But he didn't merely stop at guilt, and instead moved on to grace and to our responsibility. It truly was a powerful morning in worship which has energized our church in mission.
Check out "A Missionary, Me?" Mission Challenge Worship and click on the January 31, 2010 link. You can choose to listen to the audio of the sermon or watch the video of the entire service if you have time. I wonder if you will be as inspired as we are?!