Thursday April 17, 2014
Building People of Substance for Works of Power
It’s Covenant Thursday, Friend.
Today is the so-called Maundy Thursday, the Thursday before Easer. The word “Maundy” refers to foot washing. Today we celebrate the events of the Last Supper. One Christian group, the Coptics, refer to it as Covenant Thursday. I like that. We often gloss over what it means to be in covenant. I am very grateful that Jesus instituted the New Covenant those many years ago, “This cup is the New Covenant in my blood.” I have a covenant with God! I am one with Him, committed to Him, and thankful that He is committed to me. He has my back! But this morning I was prompted to review the relationships in my life that are covenant relationships. I have many that I think of that way, friendships and commitments to others, but I have three covenants for which I can point to a specific event when I actually promised before God to keep covenant, and took actions to commemorate that fact.
1. I am in covenant with my wife. Judy and I stood before a gathered assembly with our Pastor as the officiant. We proclaimed our commitment to each other. We asked God to bless it and to make us one flesh. He did. Next to my salvation, that moment is the most important moment of my life on earth. AS with salvation, the fruit of that moment is determined by my faithfulness to the covenant. I am committed.
2. I am in covenant with my local church, Faith Christian Fellowship of Tucson. Certainly, I am their Pastor, but I am also a covenant partner with them in the work of God in this place. Every time we receive new members, I review with them the terms of the covenant, what they can expect and what I expect. We then stand before the congregation and receive the Lord’s Table together as we speak blessing and proclaim covenant. It ain’t a club, it’s a covenant. We are committed.
3. I am in covenant with Faith Christian Fellowship International. I didn’t not just join an organization so I could get ministry credentials. I committed to be part of a vision and a plan, and to be steadfast in fostering relationships. I recall an evening after Pastor Buddy went Home, when Mrs. Harrison stood in front of a group of ministers. I went forward along with many others and laid my jacket at her feet as a token of our continuing covenant. If I have a resource that FCF needs, it is theirs. No strings attached. We have a covenant. I am committed.
These covenants were instituted by the leading of the God who changes not. They endure through difficulties and disagreements. They require that truth be spoken in love, and that relationship come before opinion and personal preference. We are one. I am committed.
Somebody Said: Individual commitment to a group effort – that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work. Vince Lombardi
Scripture Reading: And He took a cup of wine and gave thanks to God for it. He gave it to them and said, "Each of you drink from it, for this is My blood, which confirms the covenant between God and His people. It is poured out as a sacrifice to forgive the sins of many. (Mat 26:27-28 NLT)
Take a few minutes today on this Covenant Thursday and review the covenant relationships in your life. They all have special blessings for faithfulness. It’s a big deal.
Check out the FCFTucson YouTube channel.