At our Pastoral Staff Retreat back in January, something significant dawned on us.
In preparation for our multi-venue worship expansion, we reflected upon how the space for the contemporary worship venue is the same space where JCBC worshipped for a number of years prior to the construction of the sanctuary.
During that phase in our congregational life, there was no question that it was holy and sacred ground, because of what transpired in that room from week to week.
Since the construction of the sanctuary, however, that space has primarily been known as “the gym.” Not untrue. It certainly has (and will continue to) host a thousand or more people each weekend through our Upward Basketball Ministry.
But it occurred to us that since this area will once again host weekly worship services, it needs to be understood (once more) as sacred space.
One of the ways we are enabling this shift is in the language we use to describe the space. You may have noticed we have returned to using the original nomenclature for that part of our campus: “The Family Life Center.”
Still, we felt as if we needed something more than language to set right the soul.
What we need, we believe, is consecration.
Consecration is an act or ritual of declaring something sacred or holy.
Now that we are returning to that space for worship, I want us as a congregation to bless the newly renovated space with our prayers. I want us to consecrate the space once more, as a place dedicated to the worship of the Lord, our God.
That is why one week prior to the start of our multi-venue worship service, we will do something very special.
We will begin worship in the Sanctuary.
We will sing and pray. I will bring a word of encouragement and hope.
And then, at the right moment we will worshipfully depart the sanctuary to process as one body into the Family Life Center.
There, music will welcome us in to find deacons stationed throughout the room with cups and loaves of bread. Worshippers will be guided to communion stations, where we will sing together, pray together, and break bread together in celebration.
Together, we as one body will consecrate this space and re-dedicated it for worship.
Truth be known, as excited as we all are for the start of our multi-venue worship service, I am most excited about THIS moment. It is THIS moment of unified devotion and declaration that I will delight in and cherish as your pastor. It is THIS moment we aspire to affirm with one another before God: that we are all in this together.
I hope you will make plans to be a part of this very special moment in the life of our church.
Scheduling note: Since this special service of consecration is to occur before the start of our multi-venue worship experience, the room will have to be completely ready first. We will know later this week (from our contractors) if the room will be ready by the end of July or the first part of August. I will make an announcement Sunday about definitive dates.
Have I told you lately how much I love being your pastor?
Well, I do.
Johns Creek Baptist Church