Names launch this story, hundreds and hundreds of names, lists of names, page after page of names, personal names. There is no true story-telling without names, and this immersion in names calls attention to the individual, the unique, the personal, which is inherent in all spirituality. . . . And personal names that add up to a people of God, a holy congregation. Eugene Peterson, The Message.
In his introduction to Chronicles, a story of Israel’s worship, Eugene Peterson writes that nothing takes “precedence over worship in nurturing and protecting our identity as a people of God––not politics, not economics, not family life, not art. And nothing in the preparation for and conduct of worship is too small to be left to whim or chance––nothing in architecture, personnel, music, or theology.”
Our church history is a story of people in worship. Pastors. Committee members. Elders. Deacons. Trustees. Teachers. Pianists. Ministers of Music. Praying, singing, giving, preaching, teaching, sharing. Their vision and obedience reaches through time to us today. They are part of who we are now. Even as we today, in our visions, actions, prayers, words, and songs, reach into the future.