Consider This: Control

I made several calls Monday. Checked on my mom. She had food, water,
flashlights, lanterns, and batteries. I also made contact with my sister, Kathleen. She was on her way back from Vermont. She stopped at the New Hampshire state store to pick up a few items to see her through. When I made contact with my brother, Tim on Tuesday he had just left one of his stores and reported that he survived the wrath of hurricane Sandy with little damage. He is A VP and District Manager for 300 “Dunkin’ Donuts” stores.

As I viewed the graphic scenes of destruction, flooding, fire, and devastation from the “Frankenstorm” I was struck by the inability of anyone to control or limit Sandy’s force. My prayers and thoughts go out to all who have endured such agony and loss. This event will forever change the lives of many, and not in a good way.

I am sure some will seek to establish blame for the intensity of Hurricane Sandy. Familiar scapegoats are global warming, the sins of the people, the revenge of God, and the fickleness of “mother nature.”

Simply, this is just another reminder of how little control we have over the events that take place in the world. Oh, we are quick to flex our “god” muscle and gloat over our “manifest destiny” . However, we have as much control and destiny as that Jaguar did when the rushing torrent flooded the parking lot moving the car out into the street.

Consider this if you will; our control, power, and destiny is manifested in our response to the upheavals, challenges, and tragedies of life. We have no power over them. Instead we have the power to respond and the power to act.

Is that why Jesus modeled servant hood, so that we would know how to respond and when to act?

We Labor Together with God,

Munching on Kettle Corn

This afternoon as I write this article I am munching on some kettle corn from last
night. The more I munch the more I reflect on Sunday night’s All Church Weiner
Roast. It was the best. The weather was cool, a little windy but not cold or damp.

The fire was perfect for roasting hotdogs and for cooking kettle corn. The bean bag
toss game was a hit with children of all ages. While I missed the bursting of the
Pinata because I was mesmerized by the 21 foot kite Mr. Han brought, I could still
hear their squeals of delight as they gathered up the cascading candy.

As always there was so much great tasting food. I confess I had to make more than
one trip through the line. Unfortunately, I also managed to miss the traditional,
roasting of the marshmallows. How could I miss that?

When I arrived there was quite a good group assembled. It just grew larger as the
afternoon progressed, with about 90 present when all the activities concluded.

Also, as is always the case, there were several brand new folks enjoying the fun,
food, and fellowship.

However what struck me most pleasantly about the evening was a comment I
overheard, “Sure are a lot of young people here for an ‘old people’s’ church.”

I gladly admit that there are a lot more folks younger than I, involved in Walnut Street Baptist Church. I realize part of that is because I am getting old. The other part is that there, “Sure are a lot of young people here for an ‘old people’s’ church.”

Have you considered?

As The Lord Leads

For the last 2 years we have received a quarterly 5th Sunday Offering to place on the land principal. In normal times there are 4, 5th Sundays in a year. These are far from normal times. 2012 has 5, 5th Sundays. However, we have agreed not to promote the final 5th Sunday of the year.

I share this with you as a reminder that monthly contributions to the building fund are still needed in order to make our monthly payment of $2,029.72 We have 50 payments left. In the past, monthly shortfalls have been made up from the balance in the building fund. The building fund balance is quickly being depleted.

In addition to your tithes and offerings through the General Fund, would it be possible for everyone to include an amount, as the Lord leads you, to cover the monthly land payment?

There are just a few weeks before 2012 comes to a close and I am still confident and expect that together we will completely pay off the debt by December 31st.

Here are some numbers you may find interesting

5340.01:

Amount received from our final 5th Sunday offering of the year.

50:

Number of payments left

2029.72:

Minimum monthly payment

1250:

Amount paid twice a month

89,340.57:

Land payoff as of October 15th 2012

We Labor Together with God,