Contrary to most advertising by churches, being in a (good) denomination is a wonderful, Biblical blessing. Most of the authors of this blog are associated with the RPCNA, which has several presbyteries across north America and one presbytery in Japan. A couple weeks ago, I had the privilege of speaking at the Pacific Coast Presbytery's youth conference. Not only was it my first time really getting to know those churches, it was my first time in California. We believe God blessed the conference. And we believe that the Santa Monica beach is a great place to spend New Year's Day.
The PacPres (so cool it gets a nickname) is few in number and spread over a great distance. In the world's eyes, the deck is stacked against them. But good things are happening! So, in no particular order, here are things I now love about our Pacific Coast presbytery:
- Investment in the lives of youth--Although we don't buy into the cult of youth, churches that take seriously the need to disciple the next generation into faithful holiness & sacrificial service are laying a solid foundation for growth.
- Committed pastors--In a presbytery with six (or seven?) congregations, to see four pastors travel great distance to be with the youth at the conference shows how deeply committed these men are. (Even if we looks like we're just standing on the beach.)
- Vision--Man, it seems like we couldn't get through one meal or one visit without someone talking about church planting. The Los Angeles presbytery? They're already praying for it. This type of vision is contagious!
- Unity & diversity--I can't imagine for a second that the elders of this presbytery agree about everything. Yet their unity is apparent. Not everyone in the L.A. congregation looks the same--but they are a true family whose make-up reflects that of the city they love. The Spirit's unity and the body's diversity are really here.
It was a great blessing to be able to look past the size and see all the things God is doing. I'm more excited than ever for this part of our church!