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From the Pastor


Greetings!  

I pray you are well!  We are coming to the end of the year, it is so hard to believe!  I pray you had a time to give thanks to God during November, please take that time daily.  The season of Advent, beginning on December 2, marks a time of waiting.  Christmas, and the emotions it brings, is about God coming to be with us, with you and me!

I read an article by Dan Reiland, I want to share some highlights and adaptations with you as we think about Jesus, about God’s gifts to us, and about the future of Beach Lake United Methodist Church. “The strength and power of Jesus’ leadership was shown in many ways: healing, miracles, preaching, teaching, a dove, a cross, and a basin and towel. These are symbols of humility, sacrifice, love, and obedience to name just a few.

We are all called to a ministry of demonstrating grace. Our salvation is based on grace, God’s unmerited love for all. Grace isn’t about sloppy work, low standards or avoiding tough decisions. It means that your heart leans toward mercy, forgiveness and second chances. It takes much more strength to forgive than to condemn.

Clear communication about what is required is important and genuine appreciation lifts the spirits of all.  Jesus was the King of Kings but lived as a servant to all. It takes a strong, secure, and mature Christian to consistently give credit to others, build people up and inspire them to greater ministry. Encouragement provides the emotional fuel that enables the people to reach farther and dig deeper than we ever believed possible.

Love, in its purest form comes from selflessness. Christians are called to be selfless servants. It required incredible strength for Jesus to go to the cross and give his life for us. That strength originated in God’s love, Jesus loved us beyond anything we could ever earn or deserve. We, Christians, are challenged to examine the depth of love we have and to be inspired to love even more deeply.

We need to listen: avoid jumping to conclusions and ask good questions and communicate we care by seeking to understand. Most of us would rather talk, direct and “make things happen.” But it takes patience and wisdom to know when and how to listen with genuine empathy. That requires the strength of personal discipline. When people know you care, it matters.

Kindness is a quality that allows trust, connection, and genuine communication and care to take place. There is real strength in kindness. Kindness brings peace and joy into pressure-filled situations.  Kindness wins the hearts of those who are far from God. God delights in kindness.”

We, as a church and as Christians, need more practice and commitment to living in the light of God’s love with ourselves and with others. 

As we come to a new year and new beginnings I pray we all are seeking God’s will for us.

Merry Christmas!

 Pastor Barbara