Matthew 5:6 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”
I really do not know where to begin! If I am truly being open and vulnerable 2010 was a challenging year for Mercy Church. We changed our location, had big staff changes - nothing bad, simply staff moving away or staff taking a new role within the church and new staff coming in to replace those who left. We had major budget changes as well because of the move and the economic down-turn our nation is facing. Not including all the things going on in our community with businesses closing, job loss, foreclosures, and people filing for bankruptcy … all within the Mercy Church family. As well as all the personal struggles that went on with …anxiety, depression, divorce, drug addiction, loss of family … etc. etc. Tough year for a lot of people, and when people in Mercy Church hurt or suffer, we all suffer.
The good news is, WE MADE IT! And I believe we are stronger for it! What is it they say, “Tough times never last but tough people do!” That’s Mercy Church for ya … we are tough! In the midst of all that yucky stuff we were still able to provide Christmas for 150 underprivileged children in third world countries, help plant 15 life-giving churches throughout the United States, provide 36 children with a coat for the winter, serve over a 100 homeless down at the soup kitchen, provide much needed supplies to the Safe House for battered women and children, provide hundreds of dollars in groceries cards and gas cards for those struggling right here in our own church family. And that’s just what I am pulling off the top of my head … we are a giving church because you are a giving people! Thank you!
I always get excited at the end of a year because there is something about a New Year that brings a new hope, a new expectation, a fresh start … a place to start over … it’s time for a “do-over,” as we used to say as children when we didn’t get the kick we wanted in kickball. Even as adults we look around and want to call for a do-over now and again. I know I do! And I take advantage of the New Year with renewed hope, renewed vision, re-establishing lost habits, committing to do the things I know I should do! I hope you to will take advantage of the New Year to do the same.
I want to close with saying that I am stirred in the depth of my soul for what God is doing, and what He will continue to do through Mercy Church and those who call Mercy home. I believe that with change comes the opportunity for growth, improvement, and progress and that is just what I am expecting in 2011! I hope you will participate!
Please join me in praying for 3 things for Mercy Church this year:
1)Renewed Passion for Christ and His message of Hope.
2)A hunger and commitment to help hurting people.
3)Finding a place to call home. (a permanent facility)
Ephesians 3:14-21“For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge–that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”
I want to accomplish one thing in my life, besides being a great husband, a great father and having a great head of hair! And that one thing is to help people have healthier happier relationships!