Make A Difference In 2018

By Rev. Cindy Marino

We all have our concerns about the world today ... politics, the environment, violence, terrorism, addiction, crime, these all play into our desire to find a place of safety; to protect what we have and those we love.  But they also tug at our hearts as we long for ways to help, to make the world a better place. We can't know what will happen in 2018, but we can know that we are called to make a difference. 

Jesus didn't expect to change the world in His lifetime.  Instead, He planned for a community of His beloved people to take on that challenge, one day at a time. Grace UMC is a part of that beloved community. There's nothing this faith community cannot accomplish with God leading and strengthening us through His son Jesus Christ in the Holy Spirit.

As 2018 roars ahead, the leadership of Grace is busy praying and discerning how best to organize our ministries, resources, and staff to support you in all that you do. A survey went out in December to gather feedback on your desire to support various ministries. This is God's church, but each person's viewpoint is valued and worthy of being heard. 

While attendance has been declining at Grace since 2007, records show it actually stabilized in 2017.  Pledges have been received to support more than 55 percent of the budget. That's been the norm for Grace over the past several years. There's a feeling amongst leadership that as we focus less on ourselves and more on witnessing to the love of Christ, Grace will grow into its purpose in this time and place.

So what about you?  Do you know your purpose in this time and place? There's nothing more important in life! Let's explore together! Join a "Make a Difference" group for the first six weeks of 2018 and find your passion for using your gifts to serve in this broken world!

We'll be meeting in groups using new curriculum from veteran James Harnish. With DVD, discussion, reading and gift assessments, we'll pin down our passions and clarify our God-given gifts. We'll survey the best places to put those into practice. You may find some surprises! Where once you might have had the energy for children, now you may prefer a study group for adults. Perhaps you're an empty-nester and you'd like to find where you fit in this new phase of life. Are you a behind-the-scenes worker or do you prefer planning or organizing? Our findings could lead to new ministry opportunities or revitalization of current ministries.

Hope to see you in a group! May this New Year find you energized and ready to take on that to which God is calling you through Grace in 2018!

Blessings, Pastor Cindy

Make plans now to join a "Making a Difference" group!  Sign up or in the Church Office!