Sunday 4.17.11 Lenten Reflection by Brent Hildebrand

Brent Hildebrand serves as a Disciple 2 group leader, and is involved in Late Night Men’s and Beyond KC Missions. He’s been part of the Resurrection church family for 15 years.

My faith story is not about how I came into a personal relationship with Christ, since I accepted him into my life at the age of twelve. This story is about my life-long journey, since I put my faith in Christ, toward the goal of being an effective disciple. I’m in awe of the incredible and powerful testimonies of people who have been in the dark places of drug addiction, life-threatening illness, prison sentences, or damaging relationships, people who have turned their lives around through their Christian faith. I’ve had my share of life’s challenges, but they pale in comparison to these catastrophic scenarios.

I guess my life has been pretty normal. The issue was that my “normal” life, over the decades, was lived with a “normal” (and lukewarm) passion for becoming fully engaged to serve and grow in my faith. I felt I needed to be a “subject expert” in various areas of church volunteerism or leadership before I committed my time and effort to participate. Unfortunately, several churches I was a member of magnified this feeling of inadequacy. Earning the right to lead was based on scripture mastery, length of church membership, and absolute alignment to the all of the church leadership philosophies and theologies. 

What I have found life-changing about the Church of the Resurrection in terms of my spiritual growth is that there are so many opportunities to participate, to volunteer, and to lead. I feel strongly that Resurrection encourages “big and bold” ideas. These may involve risks to create new service programs, teaching ideas and worship experiences for the congregation and for the neighborhood and world communities Resurrection touches. One of these “big and bold” ideas is that every congregation member has the ability and capacity to serve, to make a positive difference in the congregation and community. For me, that has meant that with my very average intelligence, music skills, teaching experience, and leadership attributes, I have been able to take part in and lead several trips to the Navajo Nation through the Beyond Kansas City Program, to lead a Disciple 1 and 2 group through the Group Life ministry, and to play in Crossfire, the Late Night Men’s Praise Band, for the past several years. (Crossfire has reached out to perform concerts for the Lansing State Correctional and Healing House facilities.)

I’d like to make a simple, yet perhaps a bold, challenge to the readers of this testimony. Get involved. Take a risk. Start (or expand) your journey of spiritual development and resurrection witness. I make this call to action humbly, as I have so much to learn and so much room for continued growth. You’ll be amazed at how the attitude of “here I am, Lord—please use me, with all my limitations,” combined with the vast number of faith-based service opportunities at Resurrection, will enrich your life and the lives of others.

Return to the GPS Guide to read today’s scripture and reflection questions.