October 13 Message From Pastor Karen – “Dear Church”

This fall we have started a worship series called, “More than Words.” This series is focused on virtue – developing Christian character such that our actions and reactions speak of Jesus. The phrase, “walking the talk,” comes to mind.

This topic has become pertinent as over and over again we see leaders and influencers in the media who gain greater influence and popularity when they throw virtue away. Crass behavior, swearing and disrespect towards “outsiders” or “insiders” has become commonplace and deemed “correct” given the disgust of the “other.” This is not acceptable for Christian behavior regardless of what insider or outsider groups we are a part of. Not only that, we work so hard to affirm our feelings that we grant our feelings license for sin. Remember, Paul writes, “Be angry AND do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil” (Ephesians 4:26).

These are some ways to know how you are growing and where God might be calling you to grow…
1. When a clerk or a waiter is slow or makes mistakes, can you stay kind?
2. When you are hungry, angry, lonely, tired or stressed (H.A.L.T.S.) do you take it out on the people around you or on yourself? We are called to be kind to both ourselves and others (including our family). 🙂
3. When stuck in traffic, or if someone makes a traffic mistake, can you stay safe and kind?
4. When you make a mistake, can you be kind to yourself? Remember, your body and mind are not your own, you were bought with a price.
5. When someone wrongs you, can you forgive?

I recently visited with someone who had definitely been wronged. She was surprised by her desire to forgive the person who had wronged her. She said, “Usually, I would have been angry.” I was pleased to tell her, “You have grown spiritually! That is God working in your life!”

Pastor Nick and I hope that this worship series will be a reminder to all of us that following Jesus is about so much more than believing the right things. Allowing Jesus’ love to reach our actions and reactions is more than a small part of walking with Him. We are praying for you that God is speaking to you and stirring you even as we pray the same for ourselves.

Remember,  stay with what stirs you. If God is stirring you, we would love to hear how.

Blessings to you,

Pastor Karen

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