Dear Grace Family,
Having just held our annual Congregational Meeting, I want to take a moment to offer my thanks to a number of people. First, I want to thank all of you who attended the meeting. I realize that annual meetings, or meetings in general, are not the most interesting or exciting activities. But, the annual meeting is not about the excitement or meant to entertain those that attend. It is about the life and future of Grace Lutheran. We hold these meetings not for the sake of passing along information, but making decisions about leadership, how we will utilize the tithes and donations we will receive this year, and the important reminder that we are a community as much as we our a congregation and that everyone who is a part of Grace has a voice.
I, as your Pastor, am not the CEO, or president, or the ‘boss’, though my role includes some features of those titles. My most important role is as your spiritual leader, encourager, and guide. So, I do not nor do I want to be responsible for every decision that gets made regarding the future of Grace. We hold these meetings and make decisions together with the understanding that we all play a vital role in the life and future of our community.
We recently read from 1 Corinthians chapter 12 on consecutive Sundays. This chapter might be referred to as the ‘Body of Christ’ chapter because in this chapter Paul describes how every Christian who is a member of the Church is like a part of the human body. And though each part of the body has a specific function or role every part is important and vital to the function of the body. No one part is more important than another. Christ is the head, or the Leader, but we all work together for the good of each part and for the good of the whole, and ultimately for the good of the Kingdom of God.
Our annual meetings are an expression of our unity and an affirmation that every part of the body plays an important role in our congregation and that we will all work together toward the common goal of being God’s witnesses and not thinking only about what we desire individually. For me it is a beautiful expression of our unity with God and with one another and why the Church of Jesus Christ has endured for almost two millennium. Powerful stuff!
I say all of this with the understanding that not everyone is able or has a desire to participate. And that’s OK because there are so many other ways and opportunities to be the Body of Christ and to use the gifts, talents, and treasures that God has blessed us with for the sake of the Body. So, I am not being critical or judging those of you who couldn’t participate. Every person who is a part of our congregation is important and vital at whatever level of participation one has, but knowing that you matter just as much as any other part of the body, perhaps you might be encouraged to be more active, or more involved, or more invested in the life of Grace.
The really amazing thing is that the more active, involved, or invested you are the more you bless the church, bless God, and in return the more blessed you will feel. It is a win-win in every possible way! Life is a mix of good and bad and doing it in isolation or alone is nearly impossible. God made us to live in community and I cannot think of a more life giving community to be a part of than the Body Of Christ! So, thank you all for being a part of my family at Grace! I am truly blessed by each and every one of you!
In Christ’s Love,