Sabbatical 2017

Sabbatical 2017
Colonnade and shops in Bath, England

Friday, September 19, 2008

Casey's Memorial Service

What an amazing service today! With the formidable help of so many folks at Highland School, Community Christian Fellowship and the Warrenton Church of Christ, we somehow managed to cram over 400 people into the sanctuary and Fellowship Hall at WBF.

The real blessing is that everything went off like clockwork from the shuttles to the replacing of the chairs and tables at the end of the service and everything in between.

The music was totally awesome with our folks combining with the folks from CCF to provide truly Christ centered worship. After a brief time of practice early this afternoon, the Spirit knitted them together as a worship team then poured through them in a miraculous way.

Bryce Taylor was amazing as the worship leader and Ron Scrugg's "I Can Only Imagine" was riveting and soaring. "Garments of Praise" has become a beautiful tradition to ending a memorial service at WBF.

I thought the choice of "Imagine" was Holy Spirit inspired. With the tremendous diversity of the people who attended combined with the secular popularity of the song, I believe it gave those people who might not be regular church attenders a new perspective on the song while ministering mightily to those of us who know where Casey is and look forward to being there ourselves.

The service went amazingly well and all the help was greatly appreciated but there is another blessing here that we should pay close attention to: Today, we had the opportunity to minister in a mighty way. The community showed up on our doorstep and, by the grace of God and the willingness of His people to serve, we were ready for them.

So, what did the community see?

They saw a large group of Christian brothers and sisters who were grieving at the loss of someone they were close to......and praising God for what He had done! They saw joy being expressed through tears. They saw death handled in an unfamiliar way with personal loss having huge impact but the hope of eternity having a greater impact.

And, they saw the gospel.

They heard it preached from nearly every speaker and saw it rise up in the lives of those who loved Casey and love their Lord. They saw God moving among them and, hopefully, through them.

I'm sure some walked out thinking, "What's wrong with these people?" I pray that there were a few who walked out thinking, "I want that in my life!" And I pray for those who uttered a silent prayer as we gave the invitation to receive Jesus into their lives. May those seeds take firm root and begin to grow.

May God continue to be honored in all we do. May He seal up the truths those folks heard and saw today and may He shed His grace, peace and strength on the Reece family as their broken hearts heal.

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