Pete’s Blog

Mondays with Pete

September 17, 2018

Good morning;

It started like any other Sunday morning.  Lights on.  Coffee plugged in.  Thermostats set.  Classrooms checked.  Sound system on.  Doors unlocked.  Quiet time for about 45 minutes for the pastor to put the last minute touches on his message.  Early arrivers and coffee drinkers filter in with the staff.  Music floats through the building as rehearsal begins.  The lobby fills with folks coming to Bible Study.  Unhealthy treats are shared. Talk of Saturday’s football games dominates the conversations.  The room quiets again as people move to their classes.

It started like any other Sunday morning.  But, wait; there are some extra folks in the building.  They are not like us.  They’re a different color and are speaking another language.  Have we gone to the wrong church this morning?  Have they gone to the wrong church this morning?  There are drums set up in the sanctuary.  (Will anyone notice?)  A shofar is heard from the back of the sanctuary.  (They’ll notice!!)

The regular crowd shuffles in and finds that many of their regular seats have been taken by those they have not seen before.  For some there is an uncomfortable air of the unexpected in the room.  For others, there is a sense of anticipation and excitement.        The sanctuary is filled with people from different cultures, languages and dress.  Pastors from five churches are present.  The music is a mix of Latin American excitement and old familiar choruses sung in Spanish and English.  The scripture from James about putting out faith into action is read in Spanish with English shown on the screens.  Hands were clapping, some were raised in praise.  The altar was filled with during prayer time with the diversity and unity of those gathered to worship the way we will worship in heaven without regard to race or background or style of music.

A testimony was shared about a random meeting (yeah right) between two pastors – one a white American and the other a brown Hispanic.  The doors of a traditional protestant church were opened to the dream and vision of a Hispanic pastor driving down the highway when God told him to come inside this church and see if a new, Hispanic congregation could use the facility.

That was eight years ago.  That God initiated meeting has birthed five new Hispanic congregations in the region and has now sent a missionary to Mexico to start another new church.  English as a second language classes are now in their third year as the existing church helps their brothers and sister in Christ assimilate into the culture and work toward become American citizens.

A fellowship dinner followed worship as the nearly three hundred brothers and sister in Christ shared food and fellowship from across cultures.

With all the division in the church and the world today, it is a blessing and a gift from God to see that Christ came to take down the barriers we as his fallen children have put up, and bring about “The Church” as His Scriptures talk about.  They may just be five or six small churches trying to make a difference in their communities, but together they are a grand witness to what God can do when we step out in faith an allow God to work in our midst.  One day, when Jesus comes, this will be His church.  Until then, let’s give ourselves the opportunity to get a taste of what it will be like in heaven.  Let’s be a witness to our community of the unity of The Body of Christ in a divided world.

Have a great week!!!REMEMBER, YOU CAN WATCH COMMUNITY CHURCH LIVE EACH SUNDAY MORNING AT 10 AM BY CLICKING ON THE LIVESTREAM BUTTON ON OUR WEBSITE OR GO TO LIVE.SRBCC.COM. OR YOU CAN WATCH PREVIOUS SERVICES ON SRBCC.COM CLICKING ON THE VIEW SERVICE BUTTON.

Rev. J. Pete Hyde

Pastor

Santa Rosa Beach Community Church
850-267-2599

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