From the Pastor
BREATHE..... and GIVE THANKS
Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
This letter may be more of a devotion that I needed to hear, but I pray it
is one that you are needing in your life also. By the time you receive this
letter, it will be days before the election. The pace of life with the
election process, the weightiness of the Corona Virus, the buzz in the
stores as they ready for a fast-paced frenzy for the holidays is all too
much. I got into my car behind the wheel and before starting the ignition, I
took a deep, deep breath to slow myself down and let God back in the
driver’s seat. As I started the
car, the radio blasted a quiet message into my head and on my heart, the
very words I was speaking to myself – "Be still and know that I am God.”
Autumn has finally fully arrived. The days begin with a little later sunrise
and a cool, crisp nip to the air can be felt and breathed in. We can again
throw open wide the doors to our homes, workplaces and worship spaces. It is
a time to breathe in the renewing breath of the Creator of Life and exhale
with the whisper of praise on our lips.
Early mornings can now find me throwing open the front door, opening the
windows in my room and taking in a deep, hungry breath of fresh air. It is a
breath so craved it might be diagnosed by the right (or wrong) physician or
psychiatrist as a fresh air addiction. But, this hunger, this desire to take
in this deep breath is so much more. It is my morning offering of worship
and praise to Creator God and Father and my Savior, Jesus Christ. It is my
breathing in of the Holy Spirit to guide my words and actions for the day.
It is the moment each day I am sure to experience sacred joy.
This same sacred joy can be witnessed on autumn Sunday mornings at places of
worship. The doors to our churches are opened wide (I pray) to bring in
refreshing, renewing air and to welcome in all those looking forward to
breathing in Father, Son and Holy Spirit. These open doors add an extra
vitality and loving joy to the greetings exchanged between brothers and
sisters in Christ as we enter into corporate worship. Within the sacred joy
of worship, we gather together confessing our heartfelt indiscretions,
hearing God's word, both read and preached, and singing hymns of praise. The
whispers on lips become voices raised in song. The breath of God of all
Creation is inhaled and thank you is exhaled.
Grace is present and Christ literally enters into us in bread and
How can we not give thanks!
As we enter into the celebration of our American Thanksgiving, I encourage
you to take time to breathe, to breathe deeply. Throw open the doors to your
spaces and to your heart and spirit. Breathe in the refreshing, renewing
goodness of God, the spirit of sacred joy and the promise kept. Give thanks
for every life sustaining breath and for the gift of God's holy breath
OK, are you ready? 1...2...3..... Take a deep breath....... Breathe..... and
Pr. Paul <><
p.s. Did you know?
The turkey was almost our national bird.
Wild turkeys are the direct ancestors of the domestic turkey many of
us eat for Thanksgiving. Had it
been up to Benjamin Franklin, the turkey we carve for Thanksgiving
have been our national bird.
p.s.s. - Did you know that Luther said. . . . ???
For what God gives I thank indeed; What He withholds I do not need
Thursday, November 19 @ 6:30 p.m. –
ASLC Night at the Movies presents –”
The Blind Side” -
Faith, family, football: Sounds like the trappings of a sincere Thanksgiving
movie. Disney’s retells the
real-life story led by stalwart matriarch Leigh Anne Tuohy (Sandra Bullock)
as she assumes guardianship of Michael Oher, who goes from homeless teenager
to first-round draft pick.