February is the month that Bethesda, along with many other churches, set their budget for the 2019 congregational expenditures. For many congregations this causes much angst. I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly the budget was passed at our last annual budget meeting. However, the real delight and encouragement for me as your new Pastor was the respectful and positive conversation that proceeded the vote. It told me a lot about you as a body of Christ that has proven tried and true throughout this year.
This is a solid healthy congregation and you genuinely care for one another and for the needs of others around the world. This is reflected in your willingness to step out in faith and not become anxious about money. So often congregations get paralyzed with anxiety and are unable to move into future ministry opportunities. Thank-you for being wise about expenditures, generous in your giving and open to the Spirit moving us in new ways.
What a gift it has been to live into this first year of learning and becoming a part of this body of Christ. Now that I know you a little I look forward to getting to know your hopes and dreams for Bethesda. I will be contacting one family a week to have a conversation about what your needs are and where you feel God is leading Bethesda. This will begin after the annual budget meeting and will take some time so be patient and don’t feel forgotten if you don’t hear from me for a while. I will be randomly selecting who to call each week. If everyone is open to having a conversation with me, it will take about a year and a half to get to everyone. I know that sounds like a long time but it will be worth it to have genuine one on one conversations about where we experience Gods movement at Bethesda.
I also want to thank-you for the generous Christmas gift. I have been in need of a new Alb and they are very expensive. Mine has been glued together since November because it is so frayed I am unable to have it repaired. I am having one made as you read this so I should be looking pretty spiffy in the near future. Once again thank-you so very much.
Prayer Experience: God Sightings
What you will need – quiet space for two – five minutes at the end of the day; paper and a pencil
For at least five days in a row spend 2-5 minutes writing down where you experienced God’s presence. Don’t judge your own sightings; sometimes God shows up in the most unexpected places and in unexpected ways.
The more days you do this, the more you will begin to recognize that God shows up more often than we think.