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Plain and Simple for June 27, 2013

SoVaNow.com / June 27, 2013
I have just returned from the Virginia United Methodist Annual Conference in Hampton, Virginia that met this past Friday through Sunday (June 21-23). We have done some business, renewed old acquaintances, made some new friends, and grabbed some food on the run. On the side, we learned which churches would have new pastors for the coming year and which ones, such as mine, are stuck with the same ones for another season.

I am not usually a big fan of Conference. Most of the business has been decided well before we get there. When we do debate something, it seems to be quite the contest to see who can make the most arcane motion or amendment to muddy up the water. Even when we do pass a resolution, it is tough to get too excited when you know that it is not really binding on anyone. I mostly check out the books, go to worship, and try to keep my mouth shut.

This year, I have to say that I allowed myself to get more excited than usual. I found some books that promise to be more helpful than I normally come away with and that always perks me up. I just can’t help it; books are my weakness. But, even more than that, I was impressed with our new bishop, Bishop Young Jin Cho.

This was the first Annual Conference that Bishop Cho has hosted and I look forward to many more here in Virginia. He modeled a Christian humility that is rare today and he lived out the prayer life that he is asking clergy and laity alike to take upon themselves in the coming months. He has repeatedly requested that all clergy and laity in Virginia endeavor to devote one hour a day to spiritual disciplines. These spiritual disciplines could include prayer, scripture reading, meditation, journaling, meeting in a covenant group and so on. Bishop Cho asserts that there can be no revival of the church without a revival of the spirit.

During his messages at Conference and his interactions with the people Bishop Cho, demonstrated that he was serious about this spiritual revival. I, for one, am determined to join with him in this revival. What wonders might we see from our church if we all devoted but one hour a day to the spiritual disciplines?

This should not be a matter of law or obligation.

It should be a matter of joy; it should be a time spent with a Lord whom we love.

Join with me and Bishop Cho in this revival of the church and watch what happens in this next year!



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