In 1772, the faithful (though not famous) English Baptist pastor John Fawcett*, penned a well-known hymn, “The Tie that Binds.” The first stanza reads:
Blest be the tie that binds
Our hearts in Christian love;
The fellowship of kindred minds
Is like to that above.
The lines couldn’t ring truer of the wonderful reality of our fellowship in Christ. There is a binding together of people in the church. By our common Savior, our common indwelling Spirit, our common adoption to the Father – we are a spiritually unified family. And, as the last line says, this is “like to that above.” Here, Fawcett points to the inner-Trinitarian love that flows through and binds together the three persons of our triune God in undiminished and eternal delight. This week, at Jesus’ baptism, we get a glimpse as the Father’s exclaims, “You are My beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased!” (Luke 3:22). We are spiritually connected to this love and convey it to one another (1 John 4:7-11).
This week, it has been very quiet around church because CCA is on vacation. The break was certainly welcomed! But I miss seeing everyone serving and the sanctified chaos of daily ministry. I am reminded of how valuable each staff person is, and each church member is, to the binding of our church together. We have a great ministry here in Claremont! We are part of Christ’s broader ministry in New England. We are part of His broader work in this generation. We contribute to that great work, as we minister to one life at a time. You have a unique role to play. What you do here, in each moment you serve, for each individual person you bless, to contribute to the whole of church life, is of eternal weight and significance! Thank you so much for what you do. Praise the Lord for those He has assembled to this place, at this time!
This summer, please prayerfully strive to bind your life together with more people in the church and the community. Investing in others matters for eternity. You are doing Christ’s will when you love and serve one another as He has loved and served us. You’ll never regret it!
See you Sunday,
* Read more about this beloved and faithful pastor at: https://hymnary.org/person/Fawcett_John1740