Dear Brothers and Sisters:
If you are reading this mail, it is a signal that there has been restoration of some degree of normalcy for you after the passage of hurricane Irma. It would be appropriate to pause and give thanks to the Lord for being so gracious and merciful to us. We could be like the people of St. Martin or Barbuda. If you have not done so already, I suggest that you gather with your family for the purpose of offering praise to God for his goodness. Yes, it is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord!
It is my prayer that as you recover, like the rest of the people and regions who are going through the same process, that if your property experienced any damage whether major or minor, you are receiving the necessary support. If we at the church can be of any assistance to you in this process, please do not hesitate to let us know. Please also remember that we do have a food pantry that could possibly assist you with supplies.
I am pleased to inform you that apart from the debris from trees on the church compound and a couple of uprooted trees, our facility has not sustained any significant damage. (A little portion of the roof capping was dislocated). Power has been restored and from what we have assessed, all our appliances and equipment are up and working. If you are able to give a hand with any form of the cleaning up process, we would be grateful. However, I ask that you give priority to your families and those around you.
God’s willing, we will gather for corporate worship on Sunday morning. I understand that there are some persons who may not have utilities restored before Sunday. If you know such persons, please help them to cope as best as you can. We will try to have our ice machine in operation so we can make ice available to those who might need.
The Church of the Nazarene is committed to assist helping us to access resources that are needed to help us deal with the current challenges. Please inform me if you are aware of anyone who is in need of food, clothing, appliances, or things that are necessary for daily living.
Just as God remembered Noah during the flood, He has also remembered us. He is our Shelter in the time of storm.
Praying God’s blessings for you.
Hello Friends and Loved ones:
We are facing the reality of life on earth. A very powerful storm which has caused death and destruction in the Caribbean is on its way to us here in the US. Those of us in the South-Eastern section which includes Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas have been placed on warnings. We, your Metro West Nazarene family are praying that we will see the goodness and the mercies of our God even in the midst of the storm. Our God has never failed.
Please adhere to the instructions of your local disaster managements. If you are living alone, it would be a good idea to seek out friends or relatives. It is never good to be alone in times like these. If you are able, please check on our elderly before and after the storm.
Due to the time line of the storm, there will not be any church service on Sunday. You will be informed if there will be any further cancellation of any events. From your homes, please get your family together and spend time in worship. We can praise Him in the storm.
Please make your personal belongings, property and important documents as secured as you can. After the storm has passed, we will make every effort to be of assistance in as many ways as we can. Remember, the earth is the Lord’s and the people who live in it.
“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious unto you; the Lord lift up the light of his countenance upon you and give you peace” (Num. 6 24-26).
The Restoring God: He Restores My Soul
Psalm 23 is perhaps the most well-known Psalm in the Bible. It has been a source of comfort in times of grief and sorrow and a source of reassurance in the provisions of Jehovah for his children. In it the psalmist speaks of Jehovah and the special relationship that he shares with Him. The comprehensive care offered by Jehovah to His sheep is unmatched. Only He could care in this way. I’d like to ask you to think with me about the state of the individual that makes restoration of the soul necessary.
There are many craftswomen and craftsmen who are restoration specialists. They restore automobiles, furniture, houses, jewelry and a host of other things. I always like to see the before and after pictures of the restored objects. Many products are advertised as being excellent for restoring objects. Without being sure that the pictures we are shown as the before and after of the same objects, we purchase the product with confidence that we will get the result “as seen on TV”. Oh the surprises and disappointments many have had!
With the daily demands of life, we naturally experience “wear and tear” physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, psychologically…everywhere wear and tear. We make our regular visits to our physicians and specialists who keep us abreast of our physical conditions and administer the necessary therapy to keep us in top condition. We take vacations to rejuvenate us. There are products that are marketed as being able to rejuvenate us if we use them as part of our daily bath/shower routine. How ready are we to admit that there is the need for spiritual restoration and renewal? How honest are we regarding our own spiritual state? How can you tell that there is the need for spiritual restoration?
The need for spiritual restoration is as natural as the need for physical restoration. Our daily time of sleeping, eating, and exercising helps to restore our bodies. To deny ourselves of food, rest and exercise is to bring on sickness. The same is true regarding spiritual restoration. Denying ourselves of that which is essential to spiritual restoration will certainly lead to spiritual disease and spiritual death. A diseased soul lacks the strength and ability to defend itself against the contaminating elements that we encounter daily. I suggest that the Presence of Jehovah is our best option for restoration. David stated that Jehovah was with him and that the house of the Lord would be his permanent home. To dwell in the presence of Jehovah is our guarantee of the restoration of the soul. The overall care that is received, whether it is the food from the lush green pastures, the cool refreshing springs, the sumptuous table spread, or the anointing with the oil or the provision of righteousness, all contribute to the restoring of the soul.
A restored soul is a grateful one. A restored soul is a humble one. A restored soul is always mindful of the goodness and mercies of Jehovah. Those of us who have experienced the blessings of continuous restoration are patient with others as they go through their difficult times, which result in spiritual exhaustion and drained emotional tanks. We extend hope to them because we know what they are going through… because we just left there. The Shepherd has His keen attention on each sheep. Not one escapes His notice. The restoration of the soul entails the total person. Only the Good Shepherd is capable of doing this. The restoration of our souls is His delight. He waits for you to come to Him. You will not be disappointed. He delivers on His promise: “I will give you rest…you will find rest for your souls” (Matthew 11:28-30).