Sunday, April 22, 2012

Room Full of Echoes

Photo of Church of the Epiphany, by Penny Tassone Rauh, from the Untitled Album, © April 16, 2012

Room Full of Echoes

In a moment where
“It’s tempting to be distracted,
From the call of faithfulness today,
By the lure of tomorrow. . ."

When obedience
Would produce sorrow
All are sucking Life
From The Marrow

There is no regret at hand
When all together stand
To do what is called for
To take what is in His Hand

"A room so full of echoes,
They cannot be contained"
For to the world is our calling
We must not be restrained

© April 17, 2012, Stevie Glor, Jill Rutz, and Robbie Pruitt

While looking through my Facebook news-feed one day, I ran across my friend Jill’s status, which said, “It’s tempting to be distracted, from the call of faithfulness today, by the lure of tomorrow. . ."  The next post in my news-feed was a comment by another friend of mine on a photo of a mutual friend of ours.  The picture, by Penny Rauh, was of Church of the Epiphany’s first sanctuary on the day of their move.  The light was streaming through the window leaving a shadow of a cross on the floor of an otherwise darkened and empty space.  The comment posted below the photo, by my friend Stevie Glor, read, "A room so full of echoes, they cannot be contained."

This month Epiphany and many other churches in the Northern Virginia area will be vacating their buildings.  These churches have taken a stand for Biblical orthodoxy and for the centrality of salvation in Jesus Christ alone.  Because of this stand, they have suffered material loss through litigation, but have gained eternal reward in their obedience to the one who has called them to stand.  This poem, "Room Full of Echoes," pays tribute to those faithful members of Church of the Epiphany, and the other faithful churches, who have been true to their mission “To Stand for Jesus Christ, to grow together as God's family, and to make Him known through the power of the Holy Spirit.”

Having served in ministry at Church of the Epiphany for seven years during this time of standing for Christ, I have heard the beginnings of many of those echoes, which will not be contained within those walls, and have participated in creating some of them as well.  While the loss is real for so many, the gain is far more significant.  The body and bride of Christ have been faithful and obedient to their call to follow Jesus and to take His Truth to the world.  The church is the people, not the facility surrounding them.  These temporary obstacles will never restrain the mission of Christ to the world, or hinder the gathering of His faithful church.  There is no regret in doing what is called for in faithfulness and in obedience, and there is no regret in receiving from God's hand His intended blessing and direction in following His lead, whatever the consequence.

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