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Newsletter - April 2022

Newsletter – April, 2022

Greetings from the desk of the Pastor! It’s funny – March happens the same way every single year and yet I always manage to be surprised by it. As tried and true Michiganders, we live in a place that experiences all four seasons (sometimes in the same week). The sun will peek out for a moment or two, and then there might be a frost on the ground the very next day! Even though I know it’s coming – I always have to grumble a bit and get my coat back out of the closet where I have stashed it for long term storage.

This time around as the seasons make their gradual change, I can’t help but notice the parallels between that and our spiritual lives. Sometimes we are living in a spiritual winter, and things are hard and frozen – and then we have a moment of sunshine. A day or week where things really feel better and we’ve renewed our hope in Jesus and feel closer to God than ever. And then, like the flip of a switch, we can find ourselves waking up to a frost covering the ground all over again. If your connection to God has grown cold, and you’ve gotten out of the habit of relying on Jesus Christ – I want to encourage you: Spring is coming. A time of new life and budding green is coming, not just for our gardens, but also for our souls.

As we “reopen” from the pandemic (for the second or third time), I find myself going through those same decisions. We bring coffee hour back, and then we have to cut it again, and then we can bring it back again – it feels like those rare Spring days that hint to us that summer is coming, followed by a cold frost the next day. We’ve all heard that old phrase, “April Showers, bring May flowers.” It’s a classic phrase I’ve heard probably every single year of my life. But here’s the thing about spring: The beginning of change that brings new life is really just a lot of messy rain for a while. The snow melts, the ground slowly turns from hard and frozen to mushy and brown before finally we see new buds of growth. And I think this can DIRECTLY parallel our spiritual lives as well. When we are on the edge of significant and wonderful new growth in our lives – sometimes it can be really hard, sometimes it can feel like a lot of messy, muddy rain washing away the things that kept our hearts frozen.

Coming back from a pandemic takes a lot of work. Our church has done better than many, but we have not been immune to the negative effects. We have some rebuilding to do – but I am so excited and eager to do it. I don’t want to sugar coat it, we have lost a bit of momentum – but in the last few weeks alone I have seen a renewed energy as numbers climb and we start to welcome back old friends and the ministries of the church awaken. We will all need to do our part, pitch in wherever we can to bring new life back to our Church. To that effect, I have three wonderful events I want to highlight that are coming up.

First – the Welcome Back Brunch!

On Palm Sunday, April 10, we will be having a potluck brunch between the services at 10am. If you haven’t been to church in a while, I really want to encourage you to take this as an opportunity to join us! We have missed all our friends, and we are eager to fellowship with one another again.

Second – The Easter Egg Hunt Extravaganza

In the past two years we have come up with many clever ways to reach out to our community, but we have held back from our usual event activities. This year we are bringing back the egg hunt! We’ll have a story time and crafts, some time with the Easter Bunny and more! I’m so excited to see this event return.

Third – The Move 4 Mission

Technically, this event isn’t until May, but I’m so excited I wanted to start talking about it now. This is a family friendly fundraising walk-a-thon event for our United Women in Faith and all the organizations they support. There will be bounce houses for the kiddos, food down at the park, prizes and lots of moving! We hope you’ll support our walkers as they raise money for this worthy cause.

There’s a lot going on in this world, and my prayer is that this church will continue to be a light into our community, and a source of hope as we point people to Jesus Christ. And on that note, I’ll see you on Sunday.

Pastor JJ


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