Dear Grace Friends,
Grace and peace from God our Father and our Lord Jesus Christ, in the power and presence of the Holy Spirit who binds us together in unity.
It is time to refocus and renew our mission: Grace by Grace, Seeking to be God’s Faithful People. We are called by the grace of God to be a people of Grace – not to earn God’s grace, but out of gratitude for the grace God has given us through the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. Living in gratitude to God, we are called to live grace-filled lives, to be gracious and actively welcome others to experience the grace of God in their lives. Seeking to be God’s Faithful People is not a passive, lazy way of being, but an active, passionate, Spirit-filled quest to discern God’s will and do it. God has a mission, and we are called to be a mission outpost for God in the world.
I love how Trinity Lutheran Church of Pelican Rapids defines their mission:
“A Missional Christian Congregation
1. Sent by God’s Love to
2. Make Disciples of Christ and
3. By the Spirit’s Power, Bring Healing to the World.”
Their mission – which is another way of saying our mission, too – is based on three Greats:
1. The Great Commandment of Matthew 22: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind, and love your neighbor as yourself.”
2. The Great Commission of Matthew 28: “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
3. The Great Vision of the new heaven and new earth in Revelation 22: “On either side of the river is the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, producing its fruit each month; and the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations.”
Our church is not a building to which the world comes for healing; rather, Grace is a community of disciples, sent by God’s love into the world – into our homes, our neighborhoods, our places of work – to be salt and light, preserving, flavoring, and enlightening.
We need to return over and over again to the basics, to God’s mission, in which we partake. As you read this newsletter, ask yourself (as I am asking myself), how does what we do together as Grace serve God’s mission of loving, disciple making, and healing? That’s why we worship together each week. That’s why we’re going door to door to invite children to Day Camp. That’s why we’re stepping up our cooperation with Bakke, Richwood, and Lund in senior high and confirmation youth ministry. Will you join together as grace by grace, we seek to be God’s faithful people?