Tomorrow’s church, here today

Categorized as Rhonda's Posts

This year, the adult track had featured something different, a “Wise Sage Series.” Instead of one evangelist, we’d had four. And the youth–oh, the youth, they were learning that “you are not the church family of tomorrow, you’re the church family of today.”

It was on Wednesday last, the final night in the series, that it came. In the sanctuary, adults stood as one, raising voices in praise, hands lifted in worship before leaving to “go forth” when suddenly…

When suddenly, the doors opened up and the flood, it began. From stage left, stage right; from double doors in the back, a living, moving tributary. Of youth.

Middle schoolers and their leaders. High school kids, too, surging forward, crossing stage, lining steps. And we’re singing, all singing, hands lifted.

“This,” it’s Pastor, “is not just the church of tomorrow. It’s the church of today.”

They’re still coming, those kids. Still filling the spaces, and my eyes, they are looking for one. And there he is.


Down the middle aisle, he’s coming, caught up in that stream. Swept along in a river of life. And I remember.

He’d come home the other day, my taciturn boy, and he’d dropped a gift square in my hands. “He asked me today about becoming a Christian.” Blue eyes, freckled nose, voice in bass.

“What?” I can scarcely believe it. “He…asked you?” I am shocked; am amazed. And like that, I’m back there.

At the middle school up the road, there had once been a bully. A great, hulking kid from the wrong side of the tracks. Mean and obnoxious. Threatening and rude, and he’d made life plain miserable for another.

Using ballpoint ink, he’d ruin his clothes. Using taunts and mean words, he’d strike at his heart. Using manipulation and fear, he’d ask for his food, this bully from another part of town.

Looking at my blue-eyed son, I remember it all. I remember, and I see what has happened. How a boy grew in faith. How he never rejected. How his heart, it plumb swelled for the lost. Even bullies.

“He wants to become a Christian? And he’s asked you?” Grace, amazing.

From the balcony, my eyes are riveted on a black letter jacket being worn by a quiet young man. Today’s church.

Oh, yes. He is, and so are his peers who, too, have taken Christ’s name. Who have taken His name, carried His love and His message in the highways and byways of their world.

To the last, lost and least. To the bullies.

This, I remember (it comes to me now), that the battle goes not always to the strong. That it’s not the popular, the loudest, the great who will carry the spoils of war. It’s the faith-full.

God has a history of using the small, of using the quiet and the least. He uses the Davids, the Samuels, the Isaacs. And a boy, center aisle, Panther jacket.

Tomorrow’s church, here today. Blessed be God.

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