For the last two weeks, we have had a dumpster parked at the church as many of our staff and ministry leaders have been cleaning out storage areas and discarding old items that are no longer being used. Of course, all of these discarded items once served a purpose and assisted in making disciples of Jesus for previous generations of preschool students, children, youth, and adults. But these items have been taking up space that was needed for future growth, so it was time to clean out and make room for new growth.
Throughout scripture, we find examples of Jesus and others comparing our faith to pruning a garden. We must remove the old to make room for the new. Have you ever thought about where you might need pruning in your spiritual life? I have found in my own faith journey that there are times for planting new seed, times to harvest fruit, and times when I need to prune. Solomon reminds us of this in Ecclesiastes 3:1-2, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens…a time to plant and a time to uproot.” The prophet Isaiah even speaks of this in Isaiah 43:19, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” There are times in our lives and in our faith journey when we must be willing to let go of the old and embrace the new. What new thing might God be calling to you to begin? What might you need to stop doing in order to make room for the new?
Discarding the old can be difficult because we remember the good times and the memories, but I have also found it can be exciting as we prepare ourselves for what’s next. I am excited about what’s next for Royston First UMC as we make room for the new thing God is doing around us.
Have a great weekend and I look forward to being with you on Sunday morning at 8:45 and 11:00!
P.S. Mark your calendars and plan to be with us on August 4 for worship and a Back to School Brunch (see details below). This will be a great time to fellowship with everyone and enjoy delicious food together. You will also have a chance to learn more about some of our Sunday School classes and new small groups starting up this fall.