Grace Notes for January 13, 2019
Dear Grace Family,
Romans 12:16 says "Work happily together. Don't try to act big. Don't try to get into the good graces of important people, but enjoy the company of ordinary folks. And don't think you know it all!" That one scripture just about covers everything that is most right, and most wrong, about our world today.
Humbleness is an old-fashioned ideal, but one we can all understand. while it's not really something you can put your finger on, it is an attitude you recognize in people. In the same way, we recognize when someone thinks an awful lot of themselves. As much as we hate to admit it, it's kind of comforting to see the haughty fall, as they inevitably will.
The truth is, none of us want to feel less than those around us. And by today's standards, if someone has a bigger house or a better car, a higher paying job or a beautiful countenance, it can make us feel less than adequate. In spite of all that, humbleness sometimes receives a pretty bad label. We can associate humbleness with being too submissive, passive or insecure. But, as scripture tells us, this is completely wrong.
Really, we're measuring things in all the wrong ways. Being humble or haughty has less to do with looks, finances or blessings than it does with an attitude about how we got those things. And true humbleness doesn't have anything to do with coming down to someone else's level, and everything to do with wanting to lift others up.
David Gree, founder of Hobby Lobby prefers to fly economy class. Most of his money is invested where it belongs -- in charity work. He say "he wants to be remembered more for his influence on people's religion than for his busines empire...". Alexander Lebedev is a Russian street fighter turned billionair. He's known for his thriftyness, chosing to spend his fortune to help improve the lives of working-class Russians. Jim Walton, son of Wal-Mart founder, Sam Walton, conducts his business in an old brick building in Bentonville, Arkansas - not some highrise in New York. He was raised by his mother who, after Sam Walton died, raised her son in their old California home because she wanted him to have a normal upbringing.
And God didn't send Jesus to be raised in a fancy palace, waited on hand and foot by servants. He sent him to a working-class mother and father, where he learned to understand the value of the genuineness of people who haven't had everything handed to them, and the value of a good day's work.
So when you look around you and wonder why you're not getting ahead, remember that you are already blessed beyond anything you could buy with gold or silver. When you're feeling tired and defeated, getting up early to go to a job you might not always enjoy, remember that you're in the very good company of "ordinary folk" who will understand when you have holes in your socks, a car that doesn't always run, and a house that might be a little smaller than those we all secretly wish for.
We have each other -- an amazing family that holds each other up, encourages one another, and loves beyond the faults we all have. And we have a Father who knows enough about us to know that's exactly what we would need to be happy. As I start this new year, I thank my God upon every thought of you.
Be blessed, Grace Family! God is still on the throne
The week at Grace:
- TUESDAY’S, 6:30 pm: Men’s and Lady’s Bible Study. Everyone is welcome. Come and fellowship and learn.
- THURSDAY’S, 5:30: Worship Team practice. If you are interested in participating on the Worship team, please talk to Bobbie.
- THURSDAY’S, 6:30 – 8 pm, Youth of the Nation weekly worship service and bible
- LAST SUNDAY OF THE MONTH: Recycle Sunday – bring your cans and bottles in support of Youth of the Nation. Please help the Youth at Grace by supporting this effort. Our donations are a huge piece of their annual budget. It’s good for them, and great for the planet.
- On Friday evening, January 25, 6:30 pm, we will start up our Family Fellowship night. Come as you are, bring your favorite finger food or dessert to share, and join us for a time of laughter and family-friendly fun. We’ll be doing dance lessons, karaoke, movies, board games, etc. Have any ideas? We’d love to hear them!
- Look for the Time-Talent-Treasure cards on the back table: What is your special gifting? Will you share it with your Grace family? We need your help to keep our house running smooth. Please grab a card and let us know where you might feel God’s prompting to step into a church ministry.
- We are still fund-raising for our Church Van. Can you help? Please consider a monthly pledge, or a one-time donation. Mark your offering envelope “Church Van” so we know to designate the funds appropriately.
- We are looking for additional Children’s Church teachers. Please see Misty or Anthony if you feel God leading you in this direction. Our youth are our most valuable resource.
- When planning an event, please contact Bobbie with the date so she can make sure there isn’t any conflict with other church activities.
Sr. Pastor Eric Domen has been in ministry for more than 15 years, having worked as an assisting Pastor and Youth Pastor at Victory Life Center in Merced prior to coming to Grace. He was recently honored with Ordination through the ICFG, and has made a smooth transition into his position as Senior Pastor. He holds a degree in Counseling, and has a heart for the people of our community. Pastor E resides in Merced with his wife and children.
Pastor Bobbie Frye is our Administrative Pastor. She has been in ministry for more than 20 years, and is a 3rd generation Foursquare Pastor. She is a writer and musician, and takes care of Womens Ministries and Worship Arts. She has a background in Procurement and Marketing, in addition to her pastoral experience. Pastor Bobbie resides in Merced.