Pastor's Corner
“Pastor’s Corner: Odds and Ends
November 2018

Thank the Lord, fall is finally upon us!  Seems like the beautiful colors would never come to the trees.  But after a long wait, filled with warm weather and enough rain to last for years, it feels like autumn.
It’s November, and things really pick up around Franklin Presbyterian Church.  Thanksgiving is around the corner, and then it’s on to the blessed season of Christmas.
Your session and church staff have been busy with planning and implementation of meaningful activities, both in and out of worship, so that we can join one another, and folks in the community, in sharing the love and joy of life together in Christ.
A few things to keep in mind (and on the calendar):
Stewardship:  We are in the meat of our annual stewardship campaign.  The cross is up, and testimonies are being given each week.  These are genuine and heartfelt
testimonies from the leaders in our church about what God has done in their lives.
God acts through our church.  The church is the body of Christ.  We are entrusted to do God’s work, inside and outside of the church.  It takes much time and much money.
Jesus said, “Give, and it will be given to you.” (Luke 6:38)  Solomon said, “Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce.”
Friends, God has given us so much.  In this crazy world, there is no logical reason that a small community church like Franklin Presbyterian Church would still exist, much less thrive.
I mean… we don’t have a gymnasium, we don’t have a huge worship auditorium with digital widescreens, light shows and eight-piece bands.  We don’t even have a cool, young preacher who wears designer jeans and has a dazzling smile.
Yet, here we are… still thriving through the love of Christ and obedience to the word of God. 
He has, indeed, blessed us!
And so, let’s keep acknowledging His blessing with the commitment of our time and treasure.  Last year was a record-breaking year.  More folks than
ever before committed to tithe.  Our pledges were nearly 30% higher than before.
It was a miracle of the Holy Spirit.  The Psalmist wrote, “Offer the right sacrifices, and put your trust in the Lord.”  Well, we did last year, and He returned our offerings tenfold.
There is a new Spirit at work in this church folks… let us continue to honor Him with our time and treasure!
Bring a Friend Sunday (November 18, 2018):  Just one of those blessings is the announcement of our Bring a Friend Sunday.  We have been talking about this for two years, and now it is finally coming to fruition.
What a joyous and thrilling occasion!
The day will be about the blessings of love and friendship.  The sermon will reflect on Jesus as a friend to all, and the true meaning of Christian friendship.
Then we will be served one of the best lunches this side of town.  John Lowe and Rick Leonard are cooking.  With the help of Doug Foxworth and Missions, and Sue Wilkey and Nurture, this promises to be a great meal!
But there is more… we will have enough leftover so that our shut-ins can be taken a meal.  That’s the way we work around here, showing Christ’s grace on both sides of the church doors.
The Bible says, “Therefore welcome one another, just as Christ also welcomed us, for the glory of God.” (Romans 15:7)  Let’s do it.  Bring ‘em, love ‘em, feed ‘em… talk and laugh with ‘em!  That’s what we do, here, right?
Sharing Jesus:  Finally, remember why we are here, particularly this Thanksgiving.  We are here to share Jesus with others.  There are so many lost people in this community, and, truth be known, we come across several in a day’s time.
It only takes a minute to say something or ask something that leads to Jesus.  Some will comment that another looks “down,” or “sad.”  Others will comment on something they heard about Jesus in church.
Still others will ask what another thinks of Jesus, or God, or something else in the Bible.  It matters not, the way the conversation gets started.  It only matters that the conversation is started.
You may strike out… so be it.  But you will never, ever, get to first if you don’t step up to the plate.  And that’s all Jesus asks of you; step up to the plate.
It worked for me with Steve… that big ‘ole tough fellow in Mermaid’s restaurant.  If that guy (a crusty old atheist) and I can come to talking about God, and end with me praying and him crying… well, then, anything is possible.
So… God bless you all.  You are the very essence of life together in Christ, and this old preacher, for one, appreciates you very much!
                                                                                                                                     Yours in Christ,                                                                                                                                                                                      Pastor John