Making Changes

It's been a big month of changes in this pastor's life.

On June 18, I served my last official day in residency at Union Coffee in Dallas, wrapping up a year of crazy, amazing, transformational community. 

On June 27, our third child was born.

This week, my oldest son and I participated in Vacation Bible School at my new congregation, FUMC Burleson, TX.  My family's first Sunday in the new church, after a blessed and needed month of paternity leave, is in two days. 

It's a lot.  It seems like all of the things.  As if nearly every change that could happen is happening at the same time.  But that's the way of things in this world, isn't it?  The only constant is change? 

That's not exactly right. 

The genesis for a relaunch of The Liturgy Nerd, what began as a fun way for me to share stories and resources about life and ministry, is the conversation around the many changes in my denominational home - the United Methodist Church. 

In the wake of changes to come, perhaps a split, definitely a new way of being connected, a lot of people seem to be stuck.  Dialogue is focused on what's to come ... Will 'progressives' go one way and 'traditionalists' another?  What about property?  What about pensions?

But ...

What about the church, churches, we have been given stewardship of right now? 

The UMC can and will change.  A lot.  As the church of Jesus has for 2,000 years. 

What won't change is our call to introduce our loving savior to the lost, to those who don't think that God loves them, to those who can't even envision a way that God is at work in their lives.

In. This. Very. Moment. 

Jesus told his disciples, as they fretted over the future, that today's problems are enough for today.  So, today, this Sunday, on Monday when things get rolling at FUMCB, I'm here for the church my Bishop has appointed me to.  It is a joyful place.  It is a Spirit-filled place.  It's a church in a town full of people that don't even know the Methodist flavor that's missing in their lives. 

I'm not being naive.  I'm nervous about the future of the tribe called United Methodists. 

But, through all of these changes, the mandate stays the same: 

I'll keep making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world wherever I am. 

Next week, I'll get to do ministry with a senior pastor that I've known for years and that I'm excited to work with.  I'll get to work alongside a couple of dear friends that I've traveled the world with.  I get to seek out the young adults and young families in our community and introduce them to a church that already loves them. 

Change is constant.  But the call of Jesus is the same.