Five Minute Friday: Church

Two years ago, Jim began serving as a pastor of a small Lutheran church here in West Virginia. This faith community has faced some difficult challenges and trials, so there are very few people left. Our leaders recently decided to sell the church building and to become a “church without walls.”

What I find beautiful, loving and faithful, is that the leadership team has chosen not to keep the money from the sale of the building as a way to fund our future ministry together. They plan to set aside enough for three years and to donate the rest for the good of the community around us. So far, several other churches and social agencies have been gifted with chairs, cupboards, shelves, books, sacred icons, and other furniture. When the building sells, we will generously share the funds with other compassionate social agencies, too.

This is a time of great changes and challenges. Our dear folks have chosen to look at these hardships and, instead of trying to secure a comfortable and secure future for ourselves, to mostly give ourselves away.

To me, this is church. This is faith. In our times of difficulties and uncertainty, we may be tempted to hoard and keep. We may be tempted to cling and cry. Or we can choose to make good, to share what we can, to trust God with our future, and to generously love one another with that same love of Christ we have so graciously received ourselves.

(This post is part of an online writing community, Five Minute Fridays, hosted by Kate Motaung. You may find more blog posts and inspiration at her site shown under the image.)

13 thoughts on “Five Minute Friday: Church

    1. Thank you, dear Beth! We continue to pray for (and miss!) all of you. Should the time come, I know that you will be of this same heart and faith. You all were so generous with Jim and me in our hardships. ❤

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  1. What a cool idea!

    If I could ask your prayers, Karen, things have gotten very hard this week.

    Church is not a pedestal
    where we crown the winners;
    rather, it is hospital
    for the care of sinners.
    Walls may be immatereial,
    or they may be quite real,
    but concrete or ethereal,
    it’s where I go to heal
    the ego bruised when I have tripped
    upon my foolish pride,
    and for my sins I am not whipped,
    but asked, kindly, inside
    where God’s hands will take apart
    and reassemble my sore heart.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My dear friend, we have been praying for you, as well as several of my readers. I am so very sad to know this, Andrew. Your strength and your faith are beyond my comprehension (and I am certain, yours too). You are so loved! I am holding you always with gratitude and a precious sacredness…

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  2. Yes! This is the church!!! I remember about 10 years ago attending a Bible study (I think it was based on Francis Chan’s Crazy Love) when he admitted that the building project his church had just completed may not have been what God wanted for them because the millions of dollars could have been spent doing the very things you are talking about. Not many have this kind of wisdom or faith in God, and I’m inspired by your leadership’s decision.

    Amie, FMF #15

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  3. Another lovely post from you! I have learned here, during the Pandemic, that church is definitely not just a building! I am blessed to have so many sisters and brothers in Christ to share Jesus and God stories with and pray and have Bible Studies together and that is my “church” right now! In Prineville an Episcopal Church lost their building and shared a church building with another church. A friend’s Episcopal church here shares their Building with a Hispanic church. That too has worked well for both Congregations! God’s Blessings for the future of your church there❣️ 🙏🙏🙏🙏

    Also Loved Andrew’s Poem! His journey he shares rises way above his pain and Prayers that his pain is eased by his sharing it with us all❣️🙏🙏😇

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