Dear Members and Friends of IBCZ,
Last week I encouraged you to pray for our church camp, and I am pleased to report that we had a wonderful time. God blessed us with warm fellowship, deepening relationships, both challenge and inspiration in serving faithfully, and lots of fun as well. My deepest thanks to all who helped prepare and plan for the camp, for all who shared their experiences in serving, for those who led in worship, for those who met with our youth and children – too many names to list but you are all greatly appreciated! And thanks to all who prayed for the camp.
The theme of the weekend was serving, and we were reminded of the words of Jesus in Mark 10:43-45, “Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and give His life as a ransom for many.” Jesus set the supreme example in serving – He served us in the greatest and costliest way possible as He died for our sins so we can be forgiven and reconciled to God.
In gratitude for such undeserved service from our Lord, a service that changes our eternal destiny, we are to follow His example and serve others. Of course, we are to serve individuals in whatever ways we can, and we also are to serve in the church, using the gifts God has given us. Many of you are already serving in the church faithfully and sacrificially, and I thank you for that. For those who may have not yet begun to serve, let me encourage you to pray, asking God how you can best serve with the gifts and abilities God has given you.
One of the common themes we heard at the camp from those who shared their experiences in serving is the benefit and the joy they receive from their service. Of course, that is the case, for through our service we are able to make a difference in the lives of others and help build up and strengthen the church. What a privilege God has given us! And there are so many ways we can serve – teaching, worship, tech, Sunday morning set-up and clean-up, fellowship/social events, ushering, greeting, etc. If you would like to begin serving in some new way, please let me know, and we can discuss how to best make use of the gifts God has given you.
May we as a church live out Eph. 4:16, “From Him (Christ) the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”
Grace and peace,