I just heard this line today while watching a webinar.  “The One who Sees the Future, will Seize the Future!  Think it might be our theme for 2016!  This past Sunday we talked about the richness that heritage can bring.  I have nothing but great memories of my grandfather.  He drove a great car – usually pretty fast – and one day he set me in his lap and let me drive it.  At some point I swerved a little and took out a trash can that was set by the side of the road.  In those days, all trash cans were metal – and it made a lot of noise.  Unfortunately, a policeman had pulled in behind us and was probably thinking “Drunk Pastor!”  Sure enough the lights came on, and he came walking up, long before my grandpa could put me back into my seat.  He just laughed and told the officer he was teaching his grandson how to drive.  Think he was able to get out of the ticket.  Might have had to replace the trash can.  Anyway – he started a church in 62 years ago, and when he passed away, they asked my dad to become the Pastor.  He said he’d do it until they found somebody else.  31 years later, they found me.  I live in the shadow of a heritage they provided.  I carry the same name as 5 generations of William Walker before me.  With 2 daughters…….looks like it stops with me.  Unless there is some type of Abraham & Sarah miracle that takes place.  (Just kidding, Laur – “Father of the Bride 1 &  2”)  At times, just being real, that has been a heavy responsibility, but for the most part it has been a joy and privilege and benefited me far more than I deserve. But here’s the deal – while heritage has it’s place, if we simply look to the past, at what has happened, and we are not planning and preparing for what God has in store for the future, we do those who have come before us a great disservice, and more importantly we stand to miss out on what COULD BE while we look at what HAS BEEN.  And that’s when we (people, organizations, churches, athletes) become HAS-BEENS’!   In Matthew 16:18 –  Jesus said to His disciples, “on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hell will not overcome it.”  When I was growing up, we had a gate about half way up our driveway.  While it swung open to allow us access in and out, it was permanent, and not meant to be moved.  So it would seem to me, that gates being a defensive measure, must mean the church is the one on offense.  And be honest – it is so much more fun to be on offense.  (Batting, shooting, passing, dribbling) We are the ones moving forward, seeking to make a difference in the next generation and beyond.  That means new ideas, new ways of doing things, and new methods of outreach.  While the message of the Gospel remains the same, the approaches we use today are a lot different than they were at the time of Acts 2.  But the same God who delivered miraculous results for those early believers, still desires for His Church to be on the move and seeing those same results!   And His promise still stands.  Nothing will be able to stop it.  There is nothing wrong with remembering, but we must not endeavor to relive.  Whatever happened during these first 6 + decades at Calvary has been awesome, but it happened while the church was moving forward.  To relive means to head back.  And the Church doesn’t have time to do that.  We must

  • Raise the Bar of Expectation
  • Raise the Bar of Personal Discipleship
  • Raise the Level of Outward Focus

The church that Sees the Future, will Seize the Future!