As I sit down to write this letter, I am shocked to realize that it is November already. The month that we as a nation have determined to be the month of Thanksgiving; the time that we appreciate what our forefathers have done and given us. We are a nation that would not be able to enjoy our freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom from oppression, without their forbearance, dedication and hard work.
We are thankful. Are we thankful enough for all that God has given us? God loves us so much–He gave us His only son, had Him die in our place, and He has taken away all of the wrong that we have done to Him. Our God loves us even though we repeatedly deny Him and continue sinning and turning our backs on Him. Our God has called each of us into a relationship with Him, a relationship that is based on His Love and Grace—free gifts that are given to us each and every day.
How are we really doing, living up to our relationship with God? Are we aware of His presence and the gifts that He gives us everyday? You see, no matter what else we do as a church family, if we are not growing in our relationship with Jesus Christ, then we have missed the point. If we are not looking for new ways to live out our relationship-new ways to experience God and His love– then we have become just a country club in which we get together to have a good time. We have an awesome responsibility to live into our Love relationship and share it with others. Jesus wants to share something special with you today, and I don’t want you to miss it! Watch for His presence and for the special gifts that He has for you every day. How awesome our God is!
As we become thankful for all that has been given to us, we need to take time to personally thank God for all that He has done and is doing by loving us. We can thank God quietly to ourselves, or as a family. We can thank God when our Thanksgiving group is together, and we are going crazy getting ready for the big celebration. Being thankful is a way of living, it is a change of heart, and just like any spiritual gift, the more we practice it, the more we will live it.
My prayer is that each and everyone of you will experience Jesus’ love in a new way this Thanksgiving season, and every day after that.
May The Lord Bless and Keep You,
Rev. Stephen W. Barch
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