As we head into the summer and turn the page on another fiscal year at Kensington, I find myself reflecting and feeling deeply.
First, I feel weight of responsibility. So many people are counting on us! Jesus has come to them through us as His messengers and servants. The weight is good….it proves the significance and the purpose is big. But weight can get heavy…and here I am reminded of Jesus saying to His disciples, “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28).
Second, I feel immense gratitude. I have overwhelming thankfulness that Jesus has allowed us to walk with Him into amazing places. He has given us influence in metro Detroit, in churches all over the nation, and in strategic nations globally. I’m grateful to Jesus for the reach but just as grateful for you. Jesus brought you into this adventure. Jesus continues bringing great people from all walks of life, each one unique and treasured. What we do could never happen without the stunning variety of humanity Jesus has brought together.
It’s exactly what Paul described in Ephesians 2:19-22, “You are members of God’s family. Together, we are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself. We are carefully joined together in Him.”
Third, I feel optimism. Jesus said, “I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18). The amazing truth is that Jesus is Lord! He will prevail. His grace is greater than all the callousness, sorrow, and hurt of this world. And He will not be stopped.
You may not know this, but Jesus is not going to stop until He has made everything new! He is working out salvation, life and hope for people everywhere. And because He won’t stop, neither will we! We will serve, we will follow, we will trust, we will risk. All because Jesus goes in front of us the whole way.
Man, I love Steve’s reflections of the year: weight, gratitude and optimism. Those themes have been a common thread throughout this 28-year journey at Kensington.
As we transition from one budget year to another, I like to remember the highlights of the year that were only were possible because of our openhanded community. Here we go:
Taking a marriage message to the world that was birthed in many ways at Kensington. We sort have felt like we were Kensington missionaries to the world via the book, Family Life radio/podcast, and the Today Show. (We did 84 Flights, 56 Podcasts, 158 Radio shows, 40 Vertical Marriage Sermons & Date Nights, and 12 Vertical Marriage retreats.)
The Vertical Marriage messages at the campuses gave us a view and appreciation each local expression of the Kensington DNA. Each place is uniquely different yet carries the same core Kensington DNA of doing whatever it takes to point people to the love and grace of Jesus.
Watching hundreds of Kensington volunteers and leaders serve the thousands of our weekend guests at every service—all done with a smile and a generous heart.
The baptism services brought tears to my eyes—on the beach at Stoney and in the auditorium in the winter. We saw more baptisms in the winter than ever before.
It was an honor to be at Clinton Township on opening Sunday and witness thousands walk in with awe all over their faces.
Running the Hope Water 5K and laughing as the amazing runners sped past as they set another record time.
Smiling and tearing up at Easter as I watched the story of an atheist I talked to years ago turn into an incredible story of faith in Jesus. David’s story touched tens of thousands. See it here
It’s been a rewarding, tiring, crazy, monumental year at Kensington—all because of you. Thanks for being a part of this journey with us.