It’s “March Madness” at my house with three sports-crazy fans. This month, everything is about basketball. This year, Robert and a few of his sport fanatic friends are having a competition to see who can predict the most winners. There are 5 men’s and 5 women’s tournaments to crown 10 champions, a total of 606 games! Elizabeth is the official bracket-master. She will calculate how many points each person earns from their predictions. No money is won, but the winner will have bragging rights for the next year. Just getting it set up required numerous phone calls, texts and e-mails, and no games had even started yet.
When the games finally start, meal times, bedtimes and other daily events are scheduled around them. Every afternoon and evening at least one TV and often a computer are tuned in to these basketball games. Often multiple games are going being viewed on the various networks. Periodically, one of my kids will phone the other with a two word message giving a network and the order “Now”. This means that something exciting is happening in one of the games that you need to see immediately. The TV remote gets a work-out in an attempt to see every point in every game.
This single-minded focus made me wonder, what if we put our focus on the church with that intensity? Last week, I met some people who come close to doing just that. At a meeting of the Raleigh Baptist Association’s Church Relations and Credentials committee, six churches presented the story of their church. Some were fairly new, while others had a long history. All of them were asking to join the RBA for support and guidance. The pastors and lay leaders were passionate and enthusiastic about their churches. They wanted to convey to the committee the goals and missions of their respective churches. Enthusiasm, love and determination were evident as they talked and answered questions. A life-long member of a church was moved to tears as he told about the church his father had helped to build as well as his determination to keep it open and help it grow. Another man told us about the church he had started as a memorial to his late wife, and a Brazilian pastor was passionate about providing a church for the many Portuguese speakers in the Triangle area. Church leaders from three very different cultures teamed up to talk about a church for internationals, refugees and immigrants to worship as a community. Each presenting church had dreams and goals for reaching their target populations and spreading the gospel.
What about us at Crabtree Valley Baptist Church? Are we as enthusiastic and committed to our church? Are we willing to pray, and use our times, talents and money to help support and grow our church? I see evidence that many of you are. Let’s take some ideas from “March Madness” and make our church the focus of our love and enthusiasm.
Barbara Best, Deacon Chair