Tuesday, February 03, 2004

I’m sick and tired of the cold. Those who are natives to New York are saying this is the coldest winter in 20+ years. There was a stretch where the highs were in the single digits and the lows were below zero. Snow was dumped on us about once a week. Today, for the first time in a while, the temperature rose above freezing allowing the precipitation to be rain instead of snow. The first couple of snowfalls and cold temperatures were kind of romantic and neat to be a part of but now I’m sick and tired of the cold.

However, the cold is not enough to make me want to abandon the church plant project. I’m not that easy. I just have to keep saying to myself, “if I can make it through this winter, I can make it though any winter.” The chorus of the old gospel song comes to mind, “one day at a time Sweet Jesus. That’s all I’m asking from you.”

I say all this to say that I haven’t made it downtown with great regularity over the past month. At the beginning of January, Laura and I came back from our Christmas holiday travel. Two significant milestones took place upon my arrival to NYC. The first was when we started our descent into New York-LaGuardia. The pilot said his usual, “for those coming back home from the holiday season, welcome home.” It really did feel good to come back to the city. Laura and I both felt relieved to be home after having traveled through November and December. It was good to know that we would be home for quite some time. As we crossed the Triboro bridge and looked at the Manhattan skyline, we both felt like we were coming home. This was a significant milestone for us.

The second milestone was taking some of our visiting friends downtown to talk with them about the future church plant. I showed them the downtown area and talked the entire time about the dreams and hopes for the downtown church plant. For the first time ever, I felt an incredible passion for the downtown area and had a love for the people who worked and resided there. I was excited to tell these visitors about the future even though I had no idea what I was talking about. As I walked around with them and envisioned a church family meeting in the area I was filled with love. I can’t wait, I truly can’t wait! Yet another significant milestone.

So while I haven’t gotten downtown much, I have had some significant moments this new year as you can see. Hallelujah. What’s next? I’m in the process of putting down on paper the mission, vision, and core values of the downtown church. I pray for God’s guidance in doing this.

Lord, thank you for growing in me a sense of home and a passion for downtown. Please continue to grow these in me. May the vision, mission and values that I’m working on be yours. Amen.