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Gift of the Spirit

There is a chalk drawing near the side entrance to the sanctuary of our church which has rested there for years.  It has brought joy to me throughout my time here at SPC. I love sitting on the  steps next to it drinking my morning coffee.  It’s a good place to think through my sermon for Sunday. During COVID, it was a place for prayer. A makeshift chapel  when we weren’t able to go into the sanctuary. It was drawn during a family fellowship event and has found a place and presence with us over the years.  It wasn’t a planned activity. I like to think it was a gift of the Spirit.

It’s funny how long it has endured. Being made of chalk, I assumed that it would fade away eventually, but its location under the canopy of our front entrance has protected it from the rain, wind, and yes, sometimes snow. This picture has often found its place as a banner on our Facebook page. It is colorful and it has a simple, beautiful message:  faith, hope, believe, love. 

As we have started steps towards a new move, I’ve thought a lot about this chalk drawing. I will miss seeing it when I’m walking on the church grounds. In many ways, it tells a story of our congregation. As we transition to a new place of worship, there is hard work being done to make our new building feel like home. We have worked hard together to prepare for the move, but still there are questions that will be answered over time.What will worship be like? Where and how will we do fellowship? Will people be able to find us? Most importantly, with all the changes, will we still be ‘us’?  

One of the changes over the next few months will be a new church website. PEVA has graciously provided grants for churches to update their presence online. While attending a visioning meeting with members of our congregation a website developer asked us to describe our congregation. Our goal was to think of a new church logo to identify and market our church. As we shared our thoughts over Zoom, words from this chalk drawing were woven in our discussion, describing our rich history as a church family and our passion for ministry.

Through challenges and blessings we have held strong and have a wonderful story to tell. Like this chalk drawing, we are the little church that keeps going, no matter what. For as we are told in Luke 1:37 “For nothing will be impossible with God.” As we pack away our treasures and prepare for the big move we do so with hope. Through prayer, scripture, and faith we have been given a path forward. This is just the beginning of something new. I am excited to see what this next chapter has in store for us. No matter the elements, we endure…and we do so with joy and love. 

I want to end by thanking each and every one of you for your hard work throughout this transition. It is because of you that we are able to move forward in a sustaining ministry. Your faith, hope, belief, and love is why we are a success story.  

Enjoy these last moments in our church home. Share your stories and laughter, knowing that the next chapter is just around the corner.  In closing, I wish to leave you with these words from Romans 15:13:

May the God of hope fill you with all the joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.