Dear Brothers & Sisters,
I’m sure of it. My sermon on Sunday was one of the most important messages I have ever delivered. If you missed the service, I want to encourage you to listen to the sermon, Being a Third Way Church.
In this message, I defined what it means to be a “third way” church and invited us to be a congregation that addresses evil and injustices in our world without mixing the gospel with partisan politics. The response I received on Sunday was very affirming that God was at work among us. I look forward to how the Spirit will continue speaking to us in our pursuit of being the Christian difference the world so desperately needs.
Remember, you can find the sermon audio, video, slides, and other resources at our website each week, including small group discussion questions. You can also listen on the go at theGrantham Church Podcast via iTunes. It’s super easy and convenient to listen to sermons new and old on your smart phone. If you haven’t done it already, please subscribe to the podcast and keep up with where we’ve been and where we’re going.
This Sunday is bound to be a special day together. We will be receiving over a dozen people as new members of Grantham Church. I’ll be preaching a message entitled, Giving as a Spiritual Discipline. And then after the sermon we will take communion together. We will come back together for a church-wide Thanksgiving meal at 5:00 p.m. Don’t miss this time of fellowship and giving thanks for what God has done for you and our church family. As I said on Sunday, there will be a time of testimonies and everyone is welcome to share.
As we approach the end of the year, I want to encourage you to maintain (or increase) your financial giving to Grantham Church. You may have noticed in the bulletin that giving this year continues to be well ahead of giving last year. And you will see in your Congregational Council booklet this Sunday that we anticipate this trend will continue through the year and into 2018. So, if our giving continues on that trend, it will ensure that the amounts received exceed the planned expenses for 2017.
Also, in addition to your financial gifts to the church, this season is an important one in the life of our ministry partners. Therefore, we have already started sharing about opportunities that you can give material donations to our ministry partners (e.g. New Hope, Paxton, Friends Over Fences, etc.) and one of our sister congregations, LAE. Please prayerfully consider how you can bless others through your gifts.
Last week I shared with you that your staff and board are working on our preparedness for an active shooter. As an Anabaptist congregation, this means that we aim to put common sense safety and response measures in place that are in keeping with our mission and core values. Let me assure you that I view safety and security measures like I do wearing a seat belt in the car or having an alarm and a sprinkler system in case of a fire. I’d like to see us put a responsible plan in place that will deter evil and help protect the congregation from senseless violence. I will keep you updated on this process. Thank you for your understanding.
Finally, please join me in praying that we finish this year strong with open hearts to what God is doing and wants to do in our congregation. Continue to “work the spaces” of our church and be intentional in the community life of the congregation, especially as we enter the holiday season. Let’s bring a fitting end to an exciting year of blessing. Press on, brothers and sisters!
And may God continue to bless Grantham Church.
Grace & Peace,
* This post was first sent as an email to all church members. If you would like to receive the weekly email from the pastor, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org