I have spent 26 years planting New Life Fellowship Church in Queens, NYC. That is over a quarter of a century ago. That was my assigned task from God (1 Cor. 3:5-11). It has been a great journey. On Sunday I will hand over the “watering of these seeds” to Rich Villodas, my 34 year-old successor. (I will then take my new role as Teaching Pastor/Pastor-at-Large in NLF). For months I pondered the final sermon I would offer to the NLF family. What is the essence of the seeds I have planted? What are the seeds I pray they cherish, water, and grasp more deeply in the years to come? I distilled the answer to four seeds:1. Being precedes doing2. God is hidden in the marginalized3. Race matters4. God’s ways are little and slow. Take a look. You can also download the mp3 also from the NLF website. 26 Years of Lessons at NLF from New Life Fellowship on Vimeo.
“He who returns from a journey is not the same as he who left” Chinese proverb. Geri and I now depart with respect (for our partners The Willow Creek Association New Zealand and Australia, and Eagles Communications in Singapore, along with New Life Fellowship Church out of which EHS flows), with affection (for the many wonderful people we have met), and with gratitude (for the people who worked hard to serve EHS in this part of the world). I think we are finally getting it that EHS offers a powerful message of deep, beneath-the-surface spiritual formation that resonates around the world, and not simply in New York City. At the same time, a consistent thread weaved itself through this trip – our doing must flow from our being. In other words, live the message we preach, giving out of the overflow of a full cup. What does that look like when we are traveling?. Read more.