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The spot for the good news, the good word, the quick reports of the many, many wonderful news items I hear all the time and want to share with the rest of you. Expect to find the good news when you come to check out "what’s the good word?"

Monday, March 15, 2010


This writing came about on one of those days when I start work very early at home, which sometimes results in my driving to the office very late. This time, however, this imbalance produced a joyous blessing. The radio broadcast I might normally listen to was long gone, and instead, I was surprised to hear Beethoven’s Piano Concerto # 5, The Emperor Concerto. With my car’s poor little radio pumped to the max, I could just see the great man conducting the orchestra, his hair flying wildly and his arms swinging with energy! I could see him scowling, demanding the absolute best from his musicians; probably more than they knew they had to give. The result is nothing short of magnificent!

Now I confess that I am not a great, knowledgeable fan of Classical music, and yet I find something wonderfully inspiring in Beethoven. It seems to me that he has heard the very music of creation itself, and poured his entire being into expressing it. In this I believe he has given us everything he has. I do not know if it was his growing deafness that produced such urgency in him, or if his passion simply demanded free reign. In any event, the resulting greatness is such that I do not have adequate superlatives to express my awe.

There is something very compelling about such a quest to be the absolute best one can be, and to deliver every note in the most expressive possible way. It produced such sheer brilliant greatness that beside it, my dreams feel tarnished and unworthy. To express my dreams in the same space as praise for Beethoven’s genius feels inappropriate and laughable. And yet, they are my dreams and they are the best I have to give. Here goes.

I want us to build great churches for God. Oh not the bricks and mortar sort, but the kind that inspires people to bless others and transform difficult lives. I want us to build churches that feed the hungry and clothe the naked, that visit the lonely and comfort the hurting. I want us to build churches that throw open doors instead of locking them so people can come in and be warmed and fed. I want us to build churches that understand what it really means to share the Peace of Jesus Christ in ways and dimensions that we haven’t even thought of yet. I want us to do that because we want to give the very best and the very most we have to God, and to God’s people.

I want us to build great churches, not merely good ones. It is not so much about size, endowment funds or sustainable balance sheets. It is about transformed lives and people whose existence has been blessed because the church was there for them at exactly their point of need. It is also about planning and preparing for so great a cause.

May God inspire us to see and build that kind of churches. May we open our lives to truly receive our own unique vision and calling to that level of greatness. Amen!

Posted by Carman

1 comment:

  1. Carman, that is what I call passion. May we catch the vision you have and put it into action. Thank you for sharing. Barb


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