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Pastor’s Message

 

Gracias! Merci! Bitte! Grazie! Arigato! Thank You!


Our earliest training as children teaches us thankfulness. The culture doesn’t matter. Each parent trains their children early to show appreciation for what others do for us. It builds our character and trains us to reflect the goodness of God to those around us. This attitude of gratitude grows with us, and should be extended to our heavenly father as well. How often do we remember in our prayers to thank God for His unchanging grace and His mercy? 


The pilgrims at the first Thanksgiving celebration had left their homes in England, survived the harshness of an ocean journey, and landed on foreign shores, coming face to face with unfamiliar inhabitants. They soon faced a harsh winter, a lack of food and inadequate housing. But through God’s grace those unfamiliar inhabitants taught these newcomers how to survive in their homeland. Soon they were gathering as one to break bread and praise their common creator for his bounty and blessings. 


In light of today’s negative political atmosphere, I find myself pausing often to talk to God, and to thank him for blessings. I thank him for friends and family whom I dearly love, for the joy that they have brought into my life, and for the many opportunities to love them in return. I thank him for those with whom I disagree. Although we may not see eye to eye on many things, I must acknowledge that my opponent is a child of God who has been given the right, just as I have, to exercise his or her free will. I thank him that even in the midst of the strife between us an opportunity exists for faith sharing, shepherding and evangelism. We can learn something from and about each other. We often end up finding that we share more commonalities than differences. 


I thank God for the struggles that come with life. Without them none of us would grow. I thank him for the challenges we face each day. They encourage us all to reach higher, and to strive for the greater good. I thank him for our differences. Our differences teach us be tolerant and appreciative. 


Finally, I thank him for the millions of turkeys who have sacrificed their lives so that we humans have an excuse once a year to gather around a common table, break bread, and thank God for His abundant blessings! 


Pastor Carolyn