Welcome to the Pastor’s Pen.
As we launched our Speed of Love theme in 2021, we read the apostle Paul’s words here from 1 Corinthians 13:4-8:
4 Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
7 It always protects, always trusts,
always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails.
Little did we know in November 2021, how critical those words would be in 2022, as our city’s heart was broken by the most devastating flood, one year ago this past week.
I am sure you have heard, seen & witnessed the acts of love that went into protecting the precious people of our city on that fateful day. As the flood response began, we opened our drop love account and saw thousands of dollars from believers and unbelievers across the country, pour into the account to the tune of: $150, 582.
Love was dropped over our city with food vouchers, cash deposits, doonas, and white goods vouchers. Our pop-up pantry at Park Ave allowed flood-affected residents on our doorstep to acquire basic food and cleaning goods, when for so long they were hard to come by.
We had to pivot with our use of Park Ave as multiple community groups continued to ‘drop in’ to see if they could use our flood-free hall, as so many had been affected with severe flooding.
Now as the rebuild continues, some of those community groups continue to use our building.
Love was very much the order of the day.
Last Sunday, we prayed for our city as it grieves its past, experiences frustrations in its present, and now, with reports flowing in, seeks to consider its future.
For 2023, our theme has changed to Therefore we do not Lose Heart with an attempt for us to find the safe, firm ground available to us in the gospel. And in 2023, we want to reveal this treasure to our friends, family members and neighbours who make up our city, as we light up Jesus, by showing him to others through Word One-to-One.
We have so far purchased 70 copies of the Word One-to-One books, and our Committee of Management recently moved the motion to continue to supply Word One-to-One to members of our church family as they move through the resources. If 70 people were to read through it with a friend, it would cost SCPC $5488. We could hardly imagine a better way to use our gospel giving!
So in 2023 our theme may have changed, but love still remains.
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,
that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)