by Pastor Mike Carlson, Lead Pastor
Today as I write this update I have just come from the hallways of the Community Resource Center. I was walking by the offices and seeing all the amazing volunteers and staff distributing Thanksgiving meals for people in need.
On my way in the door a man stopped me to shake my hand and tell me thanks for the food. His medical expenses prevented him from being able to provide for his family’s feast this Thanksgiving, but now he can have a great dinner with dignity and joy.
I told him it is not me who provided this but the people of this church. He asked me to thank them. He told me to say, “Pastor, you tell them that Ray said thanks.” He had tears in his eyes.
Because of your generosity, 180 families received Thanksgiving feasts today. With donations we received from our Thanksgiving service from parishioners, and by joining with Second Harvest, our hard working staff, and the deep commitment of our volunteers, we are able to provide a feast not just for Thanksgiving, but meals every Thursday evening, and food to stave off hunger in many other ways.
Jesus said that when we feed the hungry, when we put clothing on the naked, when we visit the prisoner or welcome the stranger, we do that to and with Jesus Christ. In a very real way today we did not only get thanked by Ray, but by Jesus as well!
We serve, welcome, and love not just because of Jesus, but we serve Jesus. And today I am convinced that we have been thanked by Jesus.
The work we do is biblical, profound, and just the right thing for a church to do. This season of Thanksgiving I hope that you are thankful, but I hope you who serve and love in the name of Jesus hear the resounding “thank you” that rings from God because of your deep love for your neighbors in need.
Sisters and brothers, Thank You.