Many years ago, I had the privilege of listening to an amazing sermon entitled, “It’s in Your Hands” by Bishop Alfred Owens, when he was a struggling young Pastor and English teacher at Howard University. His message was simple and to the point…everything that you need is already in your hands. This message has come to mind numerous times as we have re-envisioned our Capital Campaign and as we have begun the process of raising the funds necessary for the restoration and renovation of our Fellowship House. Indeed, we have an extraordinary gift in that building that our forebears sacrificed to get and to keep, in the face of great opposition. Our renewed vision will provide us with a beautiful accessible and useful space for our ministries and meetings that will be a blessings to our church family for years to come.
Look all around you, what are the things that you desire that you may already have or have the resources to acquire? Have you best utilized everything that you have so that you are getting the most out of it? I frequently remind our church family of the words of Dr. Willie Jolley, who said, “If you do the things today that others won’t do you, you will have the things tomorrow that others won’t have.” Perhaps what you need is not to have more, but rather to better utilize what you already have. This requires hard work, dedication and commitment. You need only to look at what you already have and build on it…make it better…or take it to the next level. This is how we build on our blessings.
God has blessed each and every one of us with amazing blessings…many of which we are either unaware of or simply take for granted. In spite of this, most of us are always asking for something more. Why not take the time to evaluate what is already in your hand and then utilize that to best advantage? Good stewardship is always rewarded by God. So, let us be better stewards of the good gifts that God has already given and let us get busy building on our blessings.
With a mind to work,
It is with great joy in the Lord that we come to the mid-point of our 150th Anniversary Celebration Year. June is traditionally a month of great celebrations, with graduations and weddings, and other events related to this season and time of year. In June at Mt. Zion, we celebrate the Christian Family, in the beauty of its diversity. We celebrate and encourage our graduates and use this time to remind the family of God that it is never too late to pursue your dreams and goals, for with God all things are possible.
So many exciting celebrations are on the horizon, including our Family Day Celebration and Worship on the Lawn next Sunday, June 8, Vacation Bible School, June 23-27, Anniversary Revival, July 16-18, with Rev. Ozzie E. Smith, Jr., Church Picnic and Weekend with Covenant UCC in Cleveland July 19-20, A Capella Vocal Camp with Reginald Bowens (Afro Blue Vocalist) and finally our Annual Community Festival and Classic Car Show, August 2.
With all of these amazing celebrations before us, we must give God glory and praise, for all that God has done and continues to do in the life of Mt. Zion. As we move forward in this season of celebration, we profoundly thank God for allowing this church to be a blessing to God’s people for 150 years. We continue to strive for new and different ways to serve God and to be a blessing to God’s people on the next leg of the journey, that is set before us.
In a spirit of celebration,
As we continue to strive for optimum health and wholeness here at Mt. Zion, I want to share with our church family about a movement toward healthier living that is spreading across the country. It is called The Daniel Plan and was conceived by best selling author and Pastor, Rick Warren (The Purpose Driven Life) and several leading American physicians including Dr. Oz. It is a wholistic plan to improve your health in 40 days, and if you commit to this plan, it will truly change your life and deepen your relationship with God. I have personally made that commitment along with several others within our congregation, and we are experiencing the blessings that have resulted from it. I am encouraging our church family to explore this amazing opportunity to live a healthier life by embracing the Daniel Plan. You can purchase the book from any online bookseller or from your local bookstore.
Towards a Healthier Church,
As Spring begins, we are so excited, here at Mt Zion, to be starting so any exciting initiatives that will be a blessing to the Body of Christ. We are excited about the continued expansion of our Prison Ministry which is helping returning citizens to get reconnected as they come home to a new day in their lives. We are excited about our Capital Campaign Project, as plans are taking shape for the restoration and renovation of Fellowship House and the ongoing phases of our building plans. We are excited about our 150th Anniversary and about the ways that we are celebrating it monthly and drawing attention to the many things that God has done and is doing in the Life of Mt. Zion. We are especially excited to be embarking on a new vista in our Youth Ministry: the Mt Zion Youth Community Choir which will be facilitated by Minister Sadaqa Redus. This choir will be open to all youth of the Greater Cleveland community, and I know that it will be a great blessing to Mt. Zion.
As we move forward in this season of Lent, I am excited about all of our church family who are embracing the message of Lent, through reflection and sacrifice. I am praying for all and especially for those who are taking the Daniel Fast journey along with us. Over the next several weeks, I will be talking with our church family about going to another level of health and wholeness by journeying with me for 40 days on the Daniel Plan following Easter. It is an exciting way to transform your life for the better that was created by Pastor Rick Warren, the author of the bestselling book Purpose Driven Life. We will share more about it in the days to come.
As we forge forward, let’s work together to take Mt Zion to a new place of worship, work and witness, for our Lord, Jesus Christ.