This evening our family went to a worship service at a local Baptist church. We do this with other churches every year -- a 4-day series of revival services, uniting one Baptist, one Methodist, one Presbyterian (that's us), and one AME church. The services are truly uplifting, such a blessing to worship with a broader body of Christ. Tonight was such a night.
Our pastor's wife has been extremely ill for quite a while with cancer. He wasn't able to be at the service tonight, and he was supposed to preach. He'd hoped to come, but she had a difficult day. And our choir was to sing tonight, but our director had to go out of town on business. Our little difficulties are often God's opportunities.
Our choir sang anyway, and it went fine. We did a rousing, jazzy version of "Leaning on the Everlasting Arms." And, about 10 minutes before the service started, Adam found out that he would be preaching. Surprise! Perhaps it's better not to know, so as to avoid the nerves. He makes up for it by having more nerves afterward, I suppose. He preached on Nichodemus, and his 3 appearances in the Gospel of John, and how he changed from being a man in darkness, both physically and spiritually, to demonstrating faith at the most difficult time - carrying Christ's dead body to his tomb and showing publicly his faith in the power of a dead man.
It was a very powerful sermon and God blessed. I'm thankful that God uses Adam in such a way. I'm thankful he decided to go tonight. I'm thankful he decided to stay dressed up in his suitcoat instead of putting on a t-shirt!! And I'm encouraged for us both, once again, to see that God does want still to use him to preach. He does like teaching, and has a heart for middle schoolers, but his heart has always first been given to the church, and he longs to pastor. On nights like tonight, God seems to say to me, "Just wait. I'm still working on that plan."
Please pray for our pastor and his wife, Rob and Bev. They are going through dark valleys.