Letter from Pastor Bryan

Dear Church,

Thank you for your vote in confirming God’s calling on me to preach his Word to you. I have to
praise the Holy Spirit for the peace that I have felt in my heart over the past few weeks
regarding this vote. It is so refreshing to rest in the providential working of God through his
church. The unanimous vote was a wonderful and gracious blessing from the Holy Spirit, who
lives in and works through his church. How marvelous is his continuous love for me! It is my
honor to serve his church.

I have been excited about the future of GLC and if I could be, I am even more excited now.

I don’t often get the chance to quote Sun Tzu, but when I do, I take it. This is one of those times.

Now, when your weapons are dulled, your ardor damped, your strength exhausted and
your treasure spent, other chieftains will spring up to take advantage of your extremity.
Then no man, however wise, will be able to avert the consequences that must ensue.”
Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Chapter II: Waging War

Maybe it’s an odd quote for right now, but hear me out.

It is true that our church is different from what it has been in the past. We are smaller than we
were before. We may think that the adversary has taken advantage of our extremities. And
maybe he has. We may be tempted to be worrisome, fearful, or apathetic. But we cannot give in
to this kind of thinking. We cannot sit idly bye. We cannot rest on what might have been or what
once was. God has us here, right now, as his church.

So, it’s time to sharpen our weapons, stoke up our ardor, build up our strength, and lay up our
treasures. Obviously Master Sun had the physical in mind, but as the church we can apply this
to so much more.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the
authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual
forces of evil in the heavenly places. – Ephesians 6:12

For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the
weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy
strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the
knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, – 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

Our weapons are not against flesh and blood, they are spiritual. We fight for the minds and
hearts of our loved ones, friends, co-workers, and neighbors. We fight that they might hear
about the salvation from sin and hell that comes only in Jesus Christ. We cannot afford to give
up, give in, or give out.

Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. – Romans 12:11

Jesus has empowered and commissioned us as his church to accomplish his mission here in
Joliet, and until he changes that commission we will not relent, we will not slacken, and we will
not retreat. Sharpen your weapons GLC, for we are here to avert the consequences of sin in
Joliet, in your home, in your workplace, and in your neighborhood, so that Jesus Christ might be
glorified.

I’m excited. Are you?