Welcome to our community! My name is Cory Britt and I am thankful your curiousity has brought you this far. We are an open community who is looking at ways to center our lives around loving God and loving one another. We are imperfect but we pray we stumble towards the goodness of Jesus. If you are looking for a place to discover Jesus, yourself, your way in this world, or simply trying to figure out what the next step is on your faith journey is, please join us on a Sunday, email me, or stop in! We would love to connect with you.
A year ago, the rumblings of Covid were starting to be a bit noisy. What would happen? How would this impact our lives? Then on Wednesday night, March 11, the NBA shut down its season at the beginning of a game. On Firday the 13th I went to get a haircut and a new phone. That evening I had planned on taking Sydney to see the musical Hamilton in Miami.. While at the Apple store, I shut my phone off to set up the new phone. When I finally had service again two hours later, I turned my phone on. Within that time frame our school had been cancelled, Hamilton had been cancelled, businesses were starting to shut down, and our conference had encouraged us to re-think how we did worship. Over the next 24 hours we had to make decisions on how many services to hold on Sunday, if we had the capability to livestream, and what was live streaming anyway?!
From The Pastor's Desk-Continued
The questions began to come in. How long would this last? Can we do this long term? How do we maintain calm and communication? Will we be able to keep staff? Could we maintain programming online? Did we have the skill and the know how to do that? Our church would face the question of what it meant to be the church.
I am proud of what we have been able to do in these uncharted waters. I am surprised, like many, that we have been wrestling with this for a year. It is hard to imagine the many ways our lives have been altered. While there have been some benefits, many have suffered and continue to suffer. Many are disconnected and lost. We pray to God and ask how long can this go on.
We are starting to see hope as we have adjusted and as vaccines have been dispersed. We have seen people start to reconnect and broaden their understanding of what it mean to be community. I have witnessed people becoming the church and becoming like Jesus as they have found new ways to communicate the presence of Christ with their neighbors. The evidence of Jesus is all around us. But still, we struggle. This is not easy. Our hearts are heavy. Our burdens are real. But there is light on the horizon.
Isaiah 41:10 writes, "Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strenghten you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand"
The Israelites had been in captivity. They had been dispersed and broken and disenfranchised. Their identity, of what it meant to belong to God and be a people, was challenged. The first half of Isaiah explores that struggle. Then, in chapter 4, things change. They are no longer facing threat from other countries. They had come to grips with their own sin and ways they had fallen away from God. They then had an opportunity at freedom. A new day was happening. Light was falling on dark place. God was reminding them of who God was and is. In verse 4, "I the Lord, the first, and with the last; I am he."
While our situation is not the same, we still know hardship and fear. And while our situation is not the same, God is. God is the First and the Last. God is the redeemer. God is the light. God is the hope. And while we may tremble at what we have lost this past year, we must not fear, because God IS the I Am.
This means, as we face the dawning of hope, we must not fear. We must not fear, because God's desire is not for our harm, but our well being. God is here to strengthen you, to help you, and to uphold you. This strength is not for your benefit alone, but that you, in turn, can be a strength and a hope for others.
Yes, this has been a long year. But remember that while we face the darkness of the night, we follow a God who made the light. With Easter approaching, we must remember that God is a God of the living, that God is a God of resurrection and he is calling us to move with confidence in his hope.
To discover some of the ways to get involved and connect with the St. Peter's family, please visit the following pages:
Ladies--You are invited to join the United methodist Women in our Fellowship Hall at 6:30PM on the second Monday of each month. Programs and menue vary each month. Reservations are requested. Contact Rachel Lever for more details.
Men's group meets in our Fellowship Hall at 6:30PM on the third Monday of each month. Dinner includes your choice of steak, chicken or pork chop. Programs focus on men helping men, trying to walk the Christian walk. Reservations are requested. Requested donation: $10.00 Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.