Sunday, December 30, 2012

The Church

I am The Church
You are The Church
We are The Church together
All who follow Jesus
All around the world
We are The Church together.

When a group of children sing this simple Sunday School song, they probably don't understand how much theology they already have committed to memory.  To be a Christian, and to join in worship with The Church Universal, is a powerful testimony to our unity in Christ. Together with Christian congregations all around the world, we worship the One true God. When we pray for one another, bear one another's burdens, and join in as an active participant in the life of the church, "we are The Church together."

In a telephone conversation I had with my Pastor tonight, I explained that we could not have managed this year without the prayer support of our church behind us. Intercessory prayer offered up from many church congregations praying for Qavah and Kathryn has given us the strength to continue to stand in the face of adversity. Sports teams have cheerleaders for a reason. When the game is on, and the going is tough, we need to hear those on the sidelines cheering. We, The Church, are called to be cheerleaders, or encouragers to the saints. A call from our Pastor to say, "we continue to pray," a note left on Caring Bridge, scripture verses shared by a friend; all of these things have been steadily woven into the fabric of this story. We are so grateful for "The Church."

This Christmas, Qavah opened a gift made by The Hands of Hope at St. John Lutheran Church, our home church in Roanoke. The gift was a tied quilt. And each of the squares had an embroidery thread stitched to it, and the thread needed to be tied for the quilt to be completed. The quilt was left in the prayer chapel and each person who came into the prayer chapel to pray for Qavah, knotted off one of the ties within the squares. The quilt represents a whole church. Prayer warriors and cheerleaders united to send a message to Qavah. There is a church waiting for her at home, where she will take her place among the members, and join them in their work for the Kingdom.  Thanks be to God.

Therefore, encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:11

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