Blessed to be a Blessing

As we enter the fall ministry season and likely the final months of 12th Avenue Church’s ministry, the Worship Planning Committee met back in July to plan services for the rest of the summer and the start of the fall seasons. The team decided that in light of the likely closing of our church it would be fitting to do a message series on the theme, “Blessed to be a Blessing.” The committee felt that this would be a positive and challenging message as our church family moves on to other church fellowships and callings in the coming months. Blessed by 12th Avenue’s spiritual heritage and years of biblical teaching, the Lord is calling each of us to share this blessing with others as we all begin a new chapter of life, ministry, and walk with the Lord.

With that recommendation from the Worship Planning Committee, I focused on that theme as it unfolds throughout the Scriptures, planned the series, and presented it to the Worship Planning Committee at their August meeting. The theme begins in the book of Genesis with God’s promise to Abraham, the patriarch of Israel and the church: “I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing” (Genesis 12:2). The theme is repeated throughout the unfolding history of God’s people and in different life circumstances. The series will begin at the start of the ministry season on September 9 and will continue through the end of November, before the start of Advent. Here is the calendar for this Sunday morning message series:

September 9 – Genesis 12:1-3 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to Abraham”

September 16 – Genesis 45:1-28 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to Joseph”

September 23 – Deuteronomy 7:7-26 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to the Hebrews”

September 30 – I Samuel 17:45-50 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to David”

October 7 – World Communion Sunday – I Kings 8:41-43 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to Israel”

October 14 – Daniel 4:28-37 – “Blessed to be a Blessing – God’s Call to Daniel”

October 21 – Zechariah 8:20-23 – “Blessed to be a Blessing – God’s Call to the Jews”

October 28 – Reformation Sunday – Matthew 5:13-15 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to be Salt and Light”

November 4 – Galatians 3:7-14 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to the Gentiles”

November 11 – Veterans Day – II Timothy 2:1-13 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to His Soldiers”

November 18 – II Corinthians 1:3-7 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to the Comforted”

November 25 – I Thessalonians 4:13-18 – “Blessed to be a Blessing: God’s Call to the Hopeful”

As we reflect on this “Blessed to be a Blessing” theme throughout the Bible and the fall, I believe the Lord will use it to equip us to be a blessing to our next churches and our next callings as God’s people who have been richly blessed by the heritage, the biblical and Reformed Christian teaching, and the loving relationships here at 12th Avenue Christian Reformed Church over the years and decades we have been walking together.

May we all richly bless others with the countless blessings we have received from the Lord.

Pastor Mark

Mark Bennink