Our anniversary celebration at Trinity Lutheran is centered on theme verses from Colossians.
“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness” (Col 2:6-8).
Over the course of this year, we’ve studied and discussed these verses to keep in mind what this celebration is really about.
The final phrase is, “overflowing with thankfulness.” St. Paul calls us to be overflowing with thankfulness for all that he’s just described: For receiving Christ Jesus as Lord — the foundation of all we do and all we are. For the lives he gives us to live in him, as individual Christians, as a congregation, and as the entire body of Christ. For being rooted and built up in him through word and sacrament. For being taught and strengthened in the faith to face a tough world. These are great gifts and deserving of great thankfulness!
We are all flawed and sinful, and we all need the forgiveness and mercy and strength God gives. That’s why it is good to have a faithful congregation, where we know we can get those good things. We are each unique individuals created by God, bestowed with particular talents and interests, flaws and weaknesses, blessings and resources.
God delights in all our uniqueness, and we have every reason to thank him for all the great mercies he’s showered upon us, simply in making us each who we are. God is also the one who takes us in all our individuality and binds us together as a congregation — as this little part of the larger body of Christ.
Our congregation is distinct, with gifts and resources that bless the whole church and our neighbors near and far. We have active members of all ages, sharing their personal abilities and resources in a wide variety of ways that support and facilitate our proclamation of the good news of Jesus Christ.
Knowing that God created us, brought us together, and continues to care for us gives us great hope for the future. The psalmist sings: “the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations” (Psalm 100).
God has sustained and guided this congregation for 150 years, and will continue to sustain and guide us into the future and into eternity. How can we not be “overflowing with thankfulness” in response to all his goodness to us?
“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.”
A beautiful outline of the Christian life, in milestone years and all the years in between.