Jesus, the Cornerstone
David Nii of Centennial, CO, USA
Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the scriptures: ‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord’s doing, and it is amazing in our eyes’? Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people that produces the fruits of the kingdom.” -Matthew 21:42-44
As a first-time pastor, I was convinced the pathway to congregational success was mainly having an efficient organization, good planning, proper programming, effective use of resources, and competent execution. When the congregation continued struggling in its response to mission, instead of reassessing our approach, our leadership team launched into even greater efforts of goal-setting, programming, and organization reshuffling. We were certain the key to congregational life was creating a well-oiled, church-business machine. It took me a while to admit my folly.
Good leadership and management are valuable ingredients of congregational life. However, without focusing on loving relationships, humility, healthy response to challenges, reliance on God, sharing life’s abundance, and other Christ-like qualities, experiencing the fruits of God’s presence is elusive. Over the years, I’ve come to understand that growing in Christ is a humble response to divine questions rather than trying to be certain of right answers.
How is Christ present in our relationships? Whom is God calling us to be? Where is Christ leading us? What is the cornerstone or anchor in our lives? A healthy faith community is one that continuously ponders, dwells in, and responds to the divine mystery of God. Won’t you join me on this astounding journey?
“Attention is the beginning of devotion” (Mary Oliver).
Spend a few moments paying attention, wherever you are. Notice your surroundings. What draws your focus? Look more closely at detail and color. Notice what pulls or prods within you. How is the God-in-all-things speaking to you through what you see and feel right here, right now?
Today’s Prayer for Peace
Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.