You Are Connectors

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I have been looking forward to today for a while now. I love the way in which you all show your love during Pastor Appreciation month in October.
I love your notes, cards and gifts tremendously…However sometimes I feel a little uncomfortable as well.
I feel uncomfortable because I never want anyone to believe that I am the reason that anything good happens in our local Church.
I realize that pastoral staff happens to be the most tangible or public face of the Church…however the Church is not just the pastor…
I am not trying to minimize pastoral importance but the Church is a collection of people seeking God and supporting the Pastors as they follow the direction they believe God has given them for the local Church.
The Church is a group of Connectors looking for ways to partner with their spiritual leaders to connect people to others and God by space where everyone can belong.
The Church is….Well You….….You are what makes a Church a Community….
You Are connectors.
While people see your pastors they also see you.
Your family, friends, coworkers, and even complete strangers see you….even if you feel invisible or irrelevant.

Connectors are placed by God to be seen.

....I say this every year to the Church board.....You are here for this moment You have been placed here by God
So are you…for this moment in time for God’s great purpose you are Connectors.
Jesus makes this evident in His manifesto for the Christian life the Sermon on the Mount.
Everything prior to our passage this morning is Jesus Highlighting every type of person that in one way or another has probably felt like they were either invisible or Irrelevant.
Jesus calls them by name …The Poor, those mourning, the Humble, those hungering and thirsting for righteousness, the merciful, the pure in heart, the persecuted, and those who are mocked for faith.
Then Jesus does something that would seem outrageous… He calls them blessed.
Blessed by the Holy Spirit…Blessed by an acknowledgement from God himself.
Jesus saw them all and calls them Blessed…Jesus sees us all And calls us Blessed as Well.
We are not invisible or irrelevant.
You are not a simple temporary inhabitant of this big blue ball we call earth. You are valuable…you are seen by God.
Jesus reminds us after this opening of his greatest sermon that God has placed everyone in a location to be seen not to blend in.
Matthew 5:14–16 (NLT):
14 “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.
God has placed all people strategically. You are not placed by accident but with purpose.
15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.
God places people to shine…to be seen by everyone….Everyone sees us…Everyone knows who we are and who’s we are by the light we emit.
16 In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.
So if everyones sees us we are not irrelevant or invisible.
Connectors Refuse to be Hidden (Connector Pictures Slide)
Ben and Betty Long…..Ben and Betty lead our Prime Time ministry…She puts a ton of work into the Widows luncheon every year…she always has a meaningful craft to share with our widows and widowers…she starts planning for the next year the second this years is over, Betty is on the Church board as well....Betty and Ben are also wonderful ambassadors for the church…they greet people with love that is authentic and contagious.
John and Johanna Winner….Not only Does this couple make incredible homemade Cinimon rolls or food in general but they are Small Group leaders, they work with our teens, You see John every Sunday in the south entrance, Johanna organizes women’s activities and helps in several other ministry areas
Betty and Jerry Wilburg…Where do I start here? This couple leads a small group, Betty is our treasure, she helps with missions, attends most every activity helps in any way she can. Jerry helps take care of the facility, he makes sure the parking lot is clear from snow, he has served on the Church board, He serves on our district properties board as well as the District Advisory board, he has led Work and Witness, and is very involved in Missions in the war torn areas of Ukraine, plus now he is working on a ministry endeavor that we will talk about later.
Scott and Elizebeth Conrad….Scott and Elizebeth are rock solid. Not only does Elizebeth make a fantastic lasagna for Church get-togethers, You see Elizebeth most Sundays on stage singing, she is now our NDI director, She helps with special events like beyond summer camp, She and Scott have also been part of our mowing crew, Scott is a Church Board member, He has served on the financial committee for some time and he leads one of our Sunday Small Groups. I do not think Scott or Elizebeth have ever said no to anything that has been asked of them…
These are just the things we see on the surface....Each one of the do so much more that is unseen and unspoken but it is still light.
The one thing all of these Connectors have in common is that they shine naturally.
They do not wake up and ask how can I make people notice me this morning? They simply wake up and refuse to hide who they are in Christ.
When we shine in the places that God stations us we emit the maximum amount of lumens possible…
We shine a light into the darkness that allows those closet to us and those who are searching for light to find the peace that seems to allude most of the worlds population.

God Places Each Light…Each Follower of Jesus for Maximum Effectiveness

Even when we do not feel like are not seen we are seen....not only by God but by the skeptical, the hurting, the faithful, and the overwhelmed of the world around us…
Connect Church is full of visible and relevant Connectors.…
In fact I am looking at a room full of these people right now…I am aware of a building full of these people next door.

You are all Connectors....None of you are Invisible…You ALL Matter.

When we begin to believe that we are all visible and relevant then it is easier to believe that ALL other people matter to God as well....regardless of any differences we may observe.
Connectors are supposed to be different.
God makes us different in order to draw the.... The Poor, the mourning, the Humble, the hungering and thirsting for righteousness, the merciful, the pure in heart, the persecuted, and those who are mocked for faith.
These are the ones that need a light to guide their way to a place that they can belong before they believe.
Thank you for being Connectors.....One of the ways we Connect to God in Unity is Communion.
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