This is Minister Appreciation Month.

The running joke among church of Christ preachers goes “or as we in churches of Christ call it … October.” Most churches in our brotherhood totally ignore this. Now that’s not a big deal and I don’t mean to denigrate those brothers, but I have been bragging to my friends on you! This is one of the only churches I’ve been a part of that chose to bless their ministers during Minister Appreciation Month. And we have truly been blessed! I hope you know how special this congregation is and how much we appreciate you! I brag on you all the time!

Along those lines, I hope you also remember to bless the rest of our staff. Not just during October but throughout the year. I know Todd did a great job on Sunday. Evan is gearing up for a youth lock-in event this weekend and Heather is busy putting together our Fall Festival. Remember them and their families. Because we value your privacy we don’t always talk about everything that goes along with ministry. You won’t hear us talking about the late night phone calls, the deep theological text conversations, the handholding and tear drying and all the other things that being a minister is all about. But that doesn’t mean those things are not happening. God is working in our congregation in a mighty way and I am so excited to see what He has in store for us!

It was a great blessing to be able to take some time off. As I said earlier, I know Todd did a great job and my family was happy to have Daddy with no one else competing for his attention. We were able to unplug and connect as a family for a weekend and for that I am sincerely grateful. I do not take the blessings of serving HCOC for granted as I hear from others constantly how great we have it here!

Next week we start a brand new series I’m calling, “THIN PLACES.” The idea behind this is that there are spaces in our world where the spiritual world encroaches and is more present than normal. Think about things like mountains. Throughout Scripture mountains are holy places where God meets His people in special ways. Think about spaces like birth or death. When we feel the presence of the spiritual world around us in unusual ways. These are “THIN PLACES.” Hopefully we will return to this topic for an adult class in the near future but for this four lesson series we are going to focus in on the “THIN PLACE” of worship. How God meets us in worship. How God is present in song, in prayer, and at the table. I hope you will make plans to be here and be a part of this!

Finally, this is an extremely busy time of year and we will only get busier from here on out. The next big event on our horizon is the Fall Festival. This year we are making a concerted effort to invite the entire community. Invitations are being sent home in every one of our public elementary schools. Hopefully we will be able to increase our footprint in this community. But we need you!

We need you to volunteer. Just like the old “trunk or treat” we need people to create a table for our event. You will pass out candy and love on all the children who show up. Remember, “whoever welcomes a child in my name, welcomes me.” Mark 9:37. This will be an opportunity to welcome Jesus and to show His love to our community. So consider creating a table, manning a station (bounce houses, popcorn, snow cones, etc) or just donating candy. There is so much you can do to help this effort.

This church is well known for blessing children throughout the world. Let’s turn that heart for blessing on the children in our own backyard!

Don’t forget classes tonight! Hope to see you here! If you can’t make it, we hope you will plan to be here on Sunday! Have a blessed week! God loves you … and so do I!



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