Pastor's Corner
  
      
  
 Maintain constant love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins. Be hospitable to one another without complaining. Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received. Whoever speaks must do so as one speaking the very words of God; whoever serves must do so with the strength that God supplies, so that God may be glorified in all things through Jesus Christ. To him belong the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen.                                                                  -1 Peter 4:8-11
  
 
 
  
Six months ago, we embarked on a mission to take the love of Jesus into the surrounding neighborhood.  A couple came to us and wanted to donate to the church in the hope that the gift would be seed money for a fund to help our neighbors year after year, when they are in need.
 
Even before the donation was made, the idea was hatched under the name “Fruits From Franklin.”  Within days, session members brought forth ideas.  Others identified needs in the neighborhood.
 
Commitments were made to help, even before the mission was funded and the guidelines drafted.
 
That’s the way Jesus meant it to be.  Peter said, in the verse above, “Serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received.”  He didn’t say, “When you are absolutely certain you
 
are ready; when you have the plan in place and the money in the bank, serve one another.”
 
We didn’t wait.  We built the ramp.  We drove to sites and inspected the mobile homes.  We obligated ourselves to pay the bulk of the price; arranged to have the mobile home delivered and saved a kind old soul from another night in a cold, leaking, wet, mold-infested trailer.
 
In the meantime, donations were made, and not just from the original donors.  Folks heard about Fruits From Franklin and were moved to donate.  No, the fund is not huge, but there is money to do more good.
 
And all the while, the session continued to put together a structure for the mission to succeed.  Here are the basics:
The FFF mission is to proclaim the gospel truth of Jesus Christ in the surrounding community through fellowship, assistance, support, care and love.
The goal is to be the body of Christ in the surrounding community whenever and wherever a need becomes clear.
Within our abilities, we commit ourselves to faithfully do the work of helping those in need in our neighborhood.
FFF will be led by a committee composed of the following: Neighborhood Liaison, Mission Committee Chair, Two congregation members and the Pastor.
This committee will be nominated by the Pastor and Mission Committee Chairman, and subject to session approval. Members will serve one-year terms.
We will seek to serve in the following areas:
Home Repair
Emergency Support
Food, clothing, etc. provision
Transportation
Pastoral Care
Community Events
In order to provide such services, the committee will seek out volunteers from the church to serve, knowing that the committee cannot do it alone.
At the conclusion of each activity/project, all will be invited for prayers thanking Go and asking His continued guidance and blessing.
I am pleased to tell you that the first called committee for the Fruits From Franklin Mission will be Grace Lowe, Andy Gardner, Doug Foxworth, Tom Pickett and myself, as Pastor.  These folks all have a deep concern for the needs of others, especially in the surrounding community.
But they cannot do it alone.  It will take all of us.  Each of us has a unique gift from God, and we are called to use these gifts to help others. As the disciple Peter pointed out, “…each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace.”
 
So, let us thank God that He has called Franklin Presbyterian Church to take the good news of Jesus Christ into the surrounding neighborhood, serving and helping others along the way.  And let’s keep moving!  Join us, support us, help us help others.
 
It is the way of our Lord.  Let us turn from the world and cling to Him… following closely and resolutely as we can. As Paul said:
    “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect. …[W]e, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another. We have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us: prophecy, in proportion to faith; ministry, in ministering; the teacher, in teaching; the exhorter, in exhortation; the giver, in generosity; the leader, in diligence; the compassionate, in cheerfulness. Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good.” (Romans 1)
  
 
  
 
 
 
  

  
  
 
                                                                                                                                      Yours in Christ,                                                                                                                                                                                               Pastor John