Grace Weekly | August 7, 2014

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Scripture for the day: “… God’s kindness leads you toward repentance.” Romans 2:4

Grace Received: You won’t want to miss this coming Sunday! Be prepared for a VERY DIFFERENT order of worship as the Scripture from Romans 10:5-15 shapes our entire morning. (You might want to read it in preparation). For all of you who wrote down and shared names last Sunday of people who need Jesus, keep praying and don’t give up. If you get the opportunity to invite them to come with you this week, seize it!
I need to share a personal note. My family and I have been on the receiving end of much grace the last few days that has come directly from God, often through the channels of His people. Our family experienced a crisis and the response of the people of Grace has been overwhelming. Your prayers for me, Michelle and Brooke (and the boys too) have been felt and appreciated more than we can say. Usually I’m in a position to be giving help. It has been humbling and rewarding to be on the other side of that, and to be the recipient of such love, mercy, and gracious encouragement. Several have embodied II Corinthians 1:3-4 “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” You have shared your own struggles and testified to God’s faithfulness. God has used that to bring comfort and encouragement and for that we are extremely grateful.
  I know (now more than ever) that it is often difficult – because of pride, embarrassment, or a felt-need for self-protection – to share when things aren’t as good as we want them to be. It puts us in a vulnerable place to be transparent. I’ve been preaching here for 6+ years that what we want at Grace is something far more than surface relationships. That requires transparency and vulnerability which I’m trying to live out as well. I am thankful that this really is a safe place for that way of life which I believe is what it means to live in a Christian community – a grace-sharing community. Thank you all for living up to the name on our sign. We would appreciate your ongoing prayers. Today as always, His grace is enough.
Grace Shared: This past Monday Grace Riders (our motorcycle ministry) built their 2nd handicap ramp for a family in the church. Tangible love. Grace in the form of 2×4’s and a lot of sweat. Beautiful!
We continue to pray for Paul & Margaret Marklin. Paul has been in the hospital now for 3 weeks. Pray for Nathan, Aleisha and little Avah Mueller. We also have several marriages that are struggling. The enemy wants to destroy but Jesus came to give an abundant life and He is more than able to do above all that we ask or imagine so we have great hope. Let’s keep loving and encouraging each other.
Men & Boys: This Saturday we’re having a men’s breakfast at 8:00 a.m. It’s a time to be nourished physically and spiritually. I promise you’ll be well-fed in both so I hope you will join us.  Questions or offers to volunteer can be directed to our Men’s Ministry Leader, Derek Cooke –  For all who can, we’ll do some more work (see last paragraph of this email) after eating. You can bring chain saws, weed eaters (preferably with a blade but others will work too), rakes, brush hog, ATV with a trailer, etc. to do some more clearing. Even if you can help for an hour it would be great.
Grace Extended: The third symbol in our logo is a basin and towel (story in John 13:1-17). It exemplifies service not just as an organized event or occasional activity, but as a way of life. I want to encourage you to find one thing you can do before you go to bed tonight that would be in service of someone else. As people who know what it is to receive the grace of God, this is a fitting response. Mature and maturing disciples, like the Savior who redeemed us, have servant hearts.
One more thing: 

In case you didn’t know, we have right at 20 acres here at Grace. Much of of it is wooded and our vision has been to develop the property and make it more usable. The last couple months Richard Broadhurst, the folks with Grace Riders and some other volunteers have been hard at work cutting trails and clearing underbrush. The plan is to have a prayer path all throughout the property than can be used by anyone. The pond area behind Grace House/Grace Riders Sanctuary has been cleared and it is beautiful. (Take a few minutes to walk or drive down there the next time you are on our campus!) We want to create a park-like feel that is accessible to you, and to our neighbors. Eventually we will have picnic tables around the pond for SS classes, Grace Shared Groups, families, etc. to enjoy. There are also plans for a garden to provide fresh vegetables for those who are served at Grace House. If you’d like to help with this beautification project, contact Russ Russell – or with the garden that will be planted next spring,

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