I sent out an article some time ago about our number one value: Children and Youth.  I challenged our church to think of ways that we could support and carry out this value beyond the walls of our church.  The responses I received were so encouraging and inspiring.  Being a part of a community of faith that is so committed to carrying forth the Kingdom of God is not only exciting but also fulfilling.  Out of this challenge, the Backpack Program has been initiated.  We will be able to make a difference in the lives of many families by simply adhering to the values we identified last year.

 Another one of our value statements is as follows:  WE CARE without hesitation through our prayers, presence and provisions.  This statement certainly embodies our community in so many different ways.  The Elders meet twice a month to provide care reports and share in the ministry of caring for our people.  Our Outreach Commission has made an impact with numerous agencies in the community as well as provided relief and support to individuals.  The calls and the emails I get inquiring about the health and the well being of other church members is staggering.  Even in worship, our joys and concerns are personal and yet we surround each other with warmth and love.

I will issue a different challenge for this article.  Instead of asking for ways that the church collectively can make a difference, I am asking you personally to make a difference by living our “We Care” value statement.  Show someone you love that you care WITHOUT hesitation.  Extend Christian hospitality to a complete stranger with your provisions.  Add some extra time in your prayer life for others.  Let’s utilize this value statement to the best of our abilities.

Here’s the other thing:  I WANT TO KNOW ABOUT IT!  I know that sounds like bragging or patting yourself on the back.  Even if it feels like that, I really want to know how we are going beyond our walls to make a difference.  Shoot me an email.  Send me a text.  You can even leave an anonymous note if you wish.  It’s not about getting accolades.  It’s about the shared Spirit that we have at Forest Park Christian Church and using it to live out our values as followers of Christ.  I can’t wait to see the response.

 Pastor Bill