“Ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers.” – Ephesians 1:15-16
Apostle Paul writes to the church in Ephesus thanking them for their faith in Christ and love for one another. Lately I have been asking God to show me what I can be thankful for in the midst of such difficult times. While it has been challenging to maintain a spirit of thanksgiving, one area that overflows with gratitude is the faithful witness of the people in this church. I have seen so many acts of faithful obedience, lavish generosity, and compassionate care here at Community UMC.
I know of health care workers within our community who have told me that God continues to give them strength to place their lives at risk every day. In fact, one individual told me “I don’t feel burdened or worried but have a peace inside me as I go about my duties.” I cannot even imagine interacting with COVID patients every day and having a sense of calm in the midst of the storm. It is inspiring and clearly evidence of the power of Christ working within this church member and many others like him.
I have heard of the many people from this church that are calling our older members to encourage them and see if they have any material or spiritual needs that the church can help with. I know this for a fact because I have experienced countless times when I have called a person, only to hear that several other church members have been calling to check up on them consistently. It may seem small but it warms my heart to see such care in action.
I have been amazed by the generous giving that is taking place as members have been reaching out to me asking how they can continue their offerings for God and the church. From the person who has very little but gives generously to the individuals who have given large gifts to help the church overcome this financial hardship, it has been heartwarming because this is not money but love!
And of course, I have been deeply moved by the continued faith in God, in the prayers that are continuously lifted up, and in the confidence that God will get us through this that seems to be the pervasive sentiment among the people I have heard from. I have truly been inspired and encouraged by your faith in God, love for one another, and service to the world. It is so important that the family of Community UMC understands that we are alive and well! God is still moving in our midst and for this, we should be thankful!
I eagerly look forward to the day when we can see each other face to face but until then, may the grace and love of Christ continue to be with you all!