Although it’s something we should be doing all year, and many do, in November our thoughts turn to giving thanks.
The Apostle Paul wrote, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:4-7)
What are you thankful for today? I’m thankful that though it’s raining it’s not too cold. I’m thankful for health, family and friends. I’m thankful for all of you who minister to others with joy and make a difference in the church and the world. I’m thankful for the financial gifts you give that make the ministry possible. I’m thankful that through the generosity of those who participated in the $10,000 challenge we are able to help widows in Africa begin to support themselves, pay our shared ministry to the world-wide United Methodist Church in full this year, and continue to pay off the mortgage principal. I’m thankful that God is bringing all kinds of people to the Aldersgate church family. Especially I’m thankful for Jesus and for his life, death and resurrection through which I have received and continue to receive new life. Let us never cease in giving God thanks and praise.
On November 5, we will be celebrating All Saints Day and giving thanks for those who have come before us. If you have a loved one who died in this past year and you would like their name read in worship, notify the church office immediately so they can be included. We will also have an opportunity to show our gratitude to God for all he has blessed us with by once again sponsoring a child from the Nakivale Refugee Settlement Camp in Uganda. Our gift of $90 enables an elementary student to attend Christian school for the year. (That’s about 25 cents a day if spread over the entire year.) The cost for high school students is $210 for the year. Gifts can be made all at once or spread out over three payments, the first one due by Dec. 1.
On Sunday, November 19, we will have our annual Thanksgiving service. At the 11 AM service we will be rejoicing with Alesha Weyant, one of our youth, who will be baptized and join the church. At 4 PM our African community is putting on a concert. A free-will offering will be collected to help with the widow project. I hope you will be able to join us.