This Sunday, we will continue in our series, FACES at the CROSS, turning our attention to the faces on either side of Jesus hanging on the cross. Two criminals were facing the biggest crisis of their lives –their inevitable death. Their conversation with Jesus tells us a lot. How do you face your own crises? Does it turn you to Jesus or away from Jesus?
Also, on Sunday, we will have communion and cake. Those may seem like an odd pair. But let me explain… On Sunday, we will remember God’s faithfulness to us. 2000 years ago, Jesus went to the cross to take our place. He died so that we could be reconnected to God. He gave his life so we could have the life we were meant to have. We take communion to thank God for his amazing grace to us.
But, this Sunday, we also celebrate God’s faithfulness to GRACE Church. One year ago, we took our new name, GRACE Church. It has been an incredible year – seeing our church thrive and grow. As your pastor, every week it is an incredible thing to see you: worship, grow in your faith, encourage each other, deepen friendships, welcome new people, and strengthened to live your faith and find your mission. That is worth celebrating!
So, this week we take communion together and we eat cake together. Great is God’s Faithfulness.
Another way I see God’s faithfulness every day is in the work of our incredible GRACE Staff. When I arrived as your pastor almost three years ago, I remember talking with the search committee about the team. I remember saying… I won’t come unless Jackie Etter stays. Jackie has been my trusted colleague and has become one of my dearest friends. It would be hard to express the impact that she has had in her role as Interim Head of Staff after Alf left, her leadership through the denomination process, and in our transition to become GRACE Church. Jackie will be making a transition in the next month. Just as she had a call to come onto staff, she now is sensing a call back to focus on her family. Thankfully for GRACE church, she will continue to do special projects and be a part of our church family, and thankfully, for me personally, she will continue to be just around the corner.
I know you will join me in praying for her and thanking her personally. We are in the final stages of calling 2 new staff persons and we are in the process of creating an interim Executive Director Position to fill this role on our staff. How grateful I am for the team we are building.
I can’t wait to worship with you on Sunday,

Dr. Marnie Crumpler

Senior Pastor