“…And remember, I am with you always…” Matthew 28:20
O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever Psalm 136
There are many challenges we face living in the context of Covid. One of the overwhelming aspects during this time has to do with uncertainty. But I am reminded that God travels with us. Just as God pledged to be with the Israelites as they made their way through the uncertainty of reaching a new land, never leaving nor forsaking them, God is still ever going before us and making a way out of no way. But it is easy to forget how God has made provision for us inside of the challenges and uncertainty we have faced. Over the last few weeks, I have been awed by the evidence of God’s providence manifested in our congregations, and I am grateful. One of the most beautiful ways I have seen the goodness of God manifest is through our Connection as communities of faith in this North Carolina Annual Conference. The North Carolina Conference’s COVID-19 Response Fund helps our sisters and brothers in rural, suburban, and urban churches by providing financial assistance with pastor’s salaries, insurance payments, food pantry, and other much-needed outreach ministries to the communities we serve. It is our trust in God’s unfailing ways that lead to our faithful giving of apportionments. I have witnessed firsthand how these funds helped supplement the work of ministry and allowed bags of food, school supplies, and hot meals to bring comfort to those in need in the community I served. And because of that, I can raise my voice, lift my hands, and give God thanks! How have you seen God at work through your church to spread the love of Christ by meeting a need? These are times not to be shy to offer thanks to God from whom all blessings flow. I especially want to usher an invitation to those churches that have received support through the Annual Conference Relief Funds. I invite you to share a testimony of gratitude and thanksgiving by going to https://nccumc.org/story/ and telling the story of God’s goodness and your gratitude for our connection to each other in the most challenging of times.
Gratitude is the heart of the Christian life.
Lord I give thanks to you with all of my heart today. Help me to tell of your wonderful deeds to those around me! You have been good, and you have done so much for our communities of faith during these challenging times. Help me to remember that you have blessed us in so many ways, and I will continue to praise your name each day! Amen.
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