Monday Musings – 02/05/11
A week ago Saturday, I had the privilege of speaking to a group of pastor’s from the Copper Belt District here in Kitwe. Their theme for the year is “Breakthrough”.
As I pondered about what to share, I thought of the significance of the day they were meeting – the day between Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday. A search of the Gospels teaches that this day is called Preparation Day. Now, I must admit that I have heard messages and preached many messages myself on Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday, but I do not recall ever preaching or hearing about Preparation Day.
“It was Preparation Day (that is, the day before the Sabbath).” (Mark 15:42). Preparation Day in the Jewish culture was the day preceding the weekly Sabbath and the day preceding the annual Jewish Passover festival. It was the day they used to prepare their food and houses so that no work would be done on the Sabbath or Passover. In this context, it was the day that Jesus body was prepared for burial and put into the tomb.
In Christian circles, we think of Resurrection Sunday as the day of breakthrough. We all want the power of the resurrected life but so often we try to shortcut the process of preparation that precedes the power!!! I heard someone talk once about the “p” word – process. We all want the breakthrough but don’t like the process to get there.
MJ and I have been feeling the impact of the process. Our “preparation day” has been ongoing for the last four months. Major renovations to our African home, transformation of the new ministry formation center at TTC, and the transition to a whole new culture are just a few things that have given us new meaning to the “p” word. There is certainly a ways to go, but we feel that we may be rounding the corner toward a breakthrough!
We are in the midst of preparing our spring newsletter so I will not give away too many details in this blog, but the above picture gives you a hint of what is to come. This coming Monday, RTC will run our first conference in the newly renovated ministry center. Following the seminar, Garry Fess (from London, Ontario) will co-lecture with me a ten day intensive church planting course for TTC students and local pastors at the centre. It is finally happening. What we came to Kitwe to establish is inching closer to reality.
Can I encourage you never to shortcut the process? Preparation Day can be tedious but it is necessary. We all want the breakthrough, but we must be willing to pay the price of preparation. Most times, preparation happens in private when very few are looking. Remember one thing; God prepares us in private for public breakthrough!!!
Until next Monday…
Taking risks for Kingdom impact!