One of my favorite things to do with my daughter is playing with blocks. She really doesn’t know how to play with them yet but we are learning. I make these beautiful tall towers and spend time making sure that everything is in the correct place and then my daughter comes in and…. knocks it all down!!! Then do it again by creating another tower, she comes and again knocks it all down!
This becomes a continuous theme and she giggles and smiles as she fast crawls towards my beautiful tower like a defensive player ready for the tackle. It is joyous for her to tear down my beautiful tower but in turn is a bonding moment for us as we learn how to play with blocks and to build back up. Shepherd of thre Hills is in a time of rebuilding and the focus of 2020 is just that -- building.
Even though tearing down and starting new is something scary, something unknown, and can be tough process; there is a beauty that comes from building back up. There is a beauty in the unknown, the tough stuff, the scary. A beauty that lies just beyond what is safe and predictable. It gives Shepherd of the Hills the chance to focus on what are our goals for the new decade with this new 2020 vision that we have.
The thing is building takes time, it doesn’t happen overnight and it doesn’t happen alone. In my past month of being here, I have been blessed to be meeting with people from all areas of ministry and in the congregation. I have loved seeing the people of God coming together to continue to build the ministry here at Shepherd of the Hills. I have enjoyed learning where the foundation is and figuring out where we build from here. It takes a lot of people to make ministry happen and I am happy to say that Shepherd of the Hills has pretty fantastic and faithful people.
Building won’t be easy, it is going to require compromise, listening, loving, forgiving, educating, and communication. It is the body of Christ doing what God has called the body of Christ to do -- build each other up in love. 1 Thes. 5:10-11 talks about this, “He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” Being new here, I am excited to see where God is going to take this building year.
I pray that we are able to reach out into our community by building connections, building our new building that more may join us in worship and praise, building the staff as we continue to pour into each other and the people we bring Jesus to, and building the generosity as we learn to give our time, talents, and money to growing the kingdom. It will be a growing year. I would love to learn from you. Thank you for the warm welcome and I look forward to continuing to build on that foundation that is set in Christ.
Director of Family Life Ministry
Jessica Tibben was installed as Director of Family Life at SHLC in December 2019. She was previously working in Denison, IA as Director of Youth and Family Ministry for the past 5 years. She loves being able to serve both youth and families and bringing them to know more about Jesus.