Thanksgiving on the 4th of July

Last Sunday, our elders announced in our worship services that we have paid off our mortgage and now own Buildings B & C on our church campus. When we made the decision last August to purchase those buildings, we paid a substantial portion of the purchase price down, and negotiated a mortgage for four years for the remaining balance. We had hoped to pay it off earlier than that, but never expected to be able to be debt-free within ten months, especially during a pandemic.

Considering that 19 months ago, we had no idea what we were going to do and where we would be, in regard to church facilities, it’s especially exciting news that we now own the buildings outright. Add to that the uncertainties we faced financially just over a year ago when Covid came and we weren’t even able to meet in person, and that’s all the more something to celebrate. The Lord provided, as He always does, through the faithful giving of His people, even during a pandemic.

Speaking of which, things seem to be getting more and more back to “normal” in our church, on this side of the pandemic. Yes, we are not fully out of the woods yet, and unfortunately there are still some who are unable to return to in-person worship because of health concerns–and we do miss them. And we certainly want to make sure we continue to be wise and careful to protect the flock every way we can. But all in all, we can look back over the last year and celebrate that we survived–as individuals, as families and as a church–and again, God has been so faithful. We prayed diligently for His protection, and He answered our prayers, and for that we are thankful.

Needless to say, it’s also been a tumultuous few years in our nation. There is still much division, and in so many ways it seems like our country has lost its way. But, we have survived a pandemic and civic upheaval, and again, God has been faithful. As we celebrate America’s 245th birthday this Sunday we do so with a recognition that we are so very blessed to live in a country where we have the freedom to worship together.

All that to say, there is much to celebrate this 4th of July: faith, family, freedom; God’s provision and protection, and so much more. I, for one, am so grateful for God’s blessings over the last year, and I praise His name for His faithfulness.

I know many have plans to be out of town this holiday weekend, but if you are around, I hope you can be with us on Sunday as we celebrate His goodness to us with a churchwide breakfast fellowship at 9:00 a.m., followed by a combined worship service at 10:30. It promises to be a great day.

But more than that, I hope you’ll take some time this weekend and count your blessings as well, and be sure to thank God for His faithful work in your life. This 4th of July could be the best Thanksgiving you ever had!

What a joy it is to be your pastor. I am praying for you, as I hope you are for me, and I hope to see each of you on Sunday.

–Pastor Ken