Encouraged and Strengthened
So when they were sent off, they went down to Antioch, and having gathered the congregation together, they delivered the letter. And when they had read it, they rejoiced because of its encouragement. And Judas and Silas, who were themselves prophets, encouraged and strengthened the brothers with many words. Acts 15:30-32
Following the meeting of the Jerusalem Council, a report was given to the congregation in Antioch. The letter that was delivered was a source of encouragement to the congregation regarding their common work for the sake of the Gospel. It is also noted that Judas and Silas encouraged and strengthened their fellow believers there.
The bylaws of the Synod state that district conventions are intended for “worship, nurture, inspiration, fellowship and communication of vital information.” My hope is that the delegates return and report to their respective congregations to report on the work that we undertake in the Lord’s name together. It is also my hope that the congregations are encouraged and strengthened in their common work for the sake of the Gospel. While there are great challenges today, just as there were at the time of the Jerusalem Council, it is a joy to gather together as God’s people in Christ’s name to receive His gifts and consider our participation in His mission.
The 2022 Missouri District Convention saw approximately 400 voting delegates and nearly 100 advisory delegates and guests gather together and then return back to where they each serve God in their respective vocations. May our congregations truly be encouraged and strengthened by the work of the District and Synod for the sake of their confession of Christ to the world. All of our congregations face great challenges today, but we all share in the faithful promises and gifts of God. Conventions remind us that we are not alone as we bear witness to Christ in this hostile world. So may you be encouraged and strengthened in that blessed work of confessing Christ!
Prayer – Almighty and gracious God, You want all to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. Magnify the power of the Gospel in the hearts of Your faithful people that Your Church may spread the good news of salvation. Protect, encourage, and bless our congregations and those who proclaim the saving cross that Christ, being lifted up, may draw all people to Himself, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Fraternally in Christ,
President Lee Hagan