Pastors Message

Reaching Out from

Grand Lake Community Chapel

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Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Greetings in Christ!

Christ is Risen!  He is Risen, Indeed!!  Three days ago we joyfully celebrated the Resurrection of our Lord on a cold, snowy, blustery morning, and today we’re enjoying bright sunshine, gentle breezes, and much warmer temperatures.   And ya’ know what?  Christ is Risen!  He is Risen, Indeed!!  And that’s all that really matters on this day, and on every day in the lives of those who believe.  It doesn’t matter what the weather is doing, it doesn’t matter where on Earth we might be; Christ is Risen!  He is Risen, Indeed!!

Have you given any thought as to what you’re going to do with the awesome news of the Resurrection?  That’s not a trivial question to ponder; we’ve been given an inestimably grand gift, and it seems reasonable to try to figure out how to make best use of it.  This gift isn’t one to enjoy for a day or two and then stuff into the dark recesses of a closet, or stick on a shelf in the basement.  Each of us has been gifted with forgiveness and the promise of eternal life in Paradise with our Lord when the time comes.  In the meantime, what are we going to do to honor these gifts?  How about extending forgiveness to those who have wronged us in the past, no matter how slight the offense?  How about setting aside some time each week to do something kind for another?  How about trying to live with joy no matter how the day is going?  How about being intentionally upbeat even if you don’t feel like it?  There are as many ways to honor the priceless gifts we’ve received as there are recipients of the gifts.  But please don’t put them away until next year – these gifts are meant to be enjoyed each and every day of our lives!

With our love in Christ,

Karen and Greg


Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 2 Corinthians 5:17


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From our Bible study God Does His Best Work With Empty this morning; The comforting thought that God is always with us…
Psalm 139:7-12. 17-18

I can never escape from your Spirit!
I can never get away from your presence!
If I go up to heaven, you are there;
if I go down to the grave, you are there.
If I ride the wings of the morning,
if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
even there your hand will guide me,
and your strength will support me.
I could ask the darkness to hide me
and the light around me to become night–
but even in darkness I cannot hide from you.
To you the night shines as bright as day,
Darkness and light are the same to you.

How precious are your thoughts about me, O God.
They cannot be numbered!
I can’t even count them;
they outnumber the grains of sand!
And when I wake up,
you are still with me!

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Wishing you joy and peace in your day!  Remember, God’s got this.

Pastors Message

Reaching Out from

Grand Lake Community Chapel 


Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Greetings in Christ!

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it!  Let us rejoice in the spring warmth that’s in the air, and let us be glad that the forecasters may be wrong about the possibility of snow on Easter weekend!  Even though those of us who have been living “Up North” for more than a couple of years know full well that winter can hang on into May (or beyond, forbid the thought!), we long for sunshine and mild temperatures for Easter.  Let us hope and pray that we will be so blessed when we gather to worship on Easter Sunday!!

According to the Gospel of John, today is the day when Judas Iscariot is identified as the one who will betray Jesus to the Pharisees.  Today marks the beginning of the end of the passion of Christ; tomorrow is Maundy Thursday, when we will join in celebrating the Lord’s Supper in remembrance of the final Passover that Jesus would share with his disciples, and then the world will go dark for a time.  Good Friday will find us at the foot of the cross, watching and waiting from noon until 3:00 for Jesus to breathe his last. Those three hours can be the most powerful three hours of the year, and perhaps the most powerful three hours of your life if you’ve never sat in silence before the cross. As you reflect on the events that led to this time, as you ponder what it all means, you can be transformed in ways that you never thought possible.  You may be able to hear the still, small voice of God calling out to you; your thoughts may be molded by the presence of the Holy Spirit, and you may sense a new understanding of Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on your behalf.  Those three hours might leave you exhausted, they may leave you exhilarated, and they may leave you in tears; but make no mistake – those three hours will change you.  If you’ll let them.

Christ is Risen!  He is Risen, Indeed!!

With our love in Christ,

Karen and Greg


For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 1 Corinthians 1:18

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Hello dear friends, this is TOBY the Church Dog,!

I hope your tails are wagging and your feet are prancing today!  My tail is wagging too, but I have to admit to being a confused pup. I’ve been wrestling with the idea of what can be considered a loving act, and what cannot.

When I was a little shaver my mom took care of my brothers and sisters and me. I know this will shock you, but sometimes we did things she didn’t approve of and she would let us know it!  Even back then I liked to explore; but if I wandered too far away, my mother would sigh and then walk over to me, pick me up by the scruff of my neck, and place me back in our bed.  She never hurt me with her teeth, but I knew that she could.  If my siblings or I got to roughhousing in a way Mom didn’t like, she would be begin by fixing us with “the look,” and if that didn’t work, progress through her series of enforcement tactics: drop her ears, lower her tail, raise her lip, lean forward, and finally, emit a sharp, growling sound that only a mother can achieve.  We knew her growl was the last straw and we’d better shape up! I’m told we all had sharp little puppy teeth as young’uns, and I remember sometimes my mother’s foot would come up and push me away from her body right in the middle of my meal! I did not like that! But, as I consider my mom’s actions: growling, pushing, baring her teeth, etc.; I KNOW these things were rooted in love.  They were acts of caring and nurture, even though they might sound cold and aggressive if one doesn’t know the full story.

I guess I’ve taken after my mom, because I realize I take actions similar to hers in my adult life.  If the mail carrier touches our house or someone walks closer than I think is safe, I bark loudly letting them know that my family lives here and I will protect them.  It is my goal to chase them away, not to harm them.  If someone comes too close to one of you or my other loved ones and I feel concern about your safety, I will do all of those things my mother taught me in order to let them know that you are under my protection. I will fix them with a stare, change my posture, lower my ears and tail, show my teeth, and finally growl.  I don’t want to harm them; just make them think twice about their actions, but I know I could and would do harm if one of you were threatened by danger.  And so I ask myself, is this a loving act?  Is it even proper action?  I guess this depends on whether the one considering the question is the protected or the threatened. 

And so I do what I always do when I’m confused about my questions; I turn to the Bible for wisdom. In the Old Testament I’m met with all kinds of accounts of God sending His people out to destroy that which was harmful and evil.  In that same part of the Bible we receive the Ten Commandments, instructing us in how to live together lovingly as God’s children.  In the New Testament we learn about God’s grace through Jesus Christ, hear about “turning the other cheek” when someone harms us, and are instructed to give and seek forgiveness when wrongs occur. We also hear there the account of Jesus’ anger at the misuse of God’s House as he makes a whip and chases the money changers out of the temple.  And so, as I mentioned earlier, I’m a confused pup.

I love you, dear friends,

I so want to be a good Christian and choose actions that make God proud of me.  I want to live out God’s love in all that I do.  But, can God’s love look forceful sometimes? My mother was loving in the way she behaved.  Am I loving when I take actions to defend my loved ones? Can my bark be loving?  What about my bite?  I’m guessing I will find part of the answer in examining my motivation; is my choice of action coming from a place of love, fear, or hate?  I don’t yet have a clear answer to these questions; but I do know that it is good and right for me to keep praying, reading the Bible, and thinking about what God it telling me on the topic of being a loving part of his creation.  It would be very wrong if I chose not to wrestle with this at all.

TOBY


Let all that you do be done in love. 1 Corinthians 16:14

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Wishing you joy and peace in your day!  Remember, God’s got this.

Pastors Message

Reaching Out from 

Grand Lake Community Chapel 

Wednesday, April 6, 2022 

Greetings in Christ! 

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it! Let us rejoice that there isn’t a coating  of ice on the roads and sidewalks, and let us be glad that the forecast isn’t calling for ice or snow or gale-force  winds! Only rain…  

What a difference a week makes, eh? Last Wednesday found most of us hunkered down at home, with an ice  storm having made travel uncomfortable at best, hazardous at worst. Today, we look out our office window  and see slowly diminishing piles of snow, and just a hint of green emerging from the newly uncovered grass.  Last Wednesday also found us 17 days away from the end of the Lenten season; today we’re only 10 days  away, and on the cusp of Holy Week. Starting with our observation of Palm/Passion Sunday, we will begin our  journey to the cross alongside Jesus. We will share in the Passover with him at the Maundy Thursday service  at Westminster Presbyterian Church; sit at the foot of the cross during the Good Friday vigil from noon until  3:00 p.m. as he suffers; and we will contemplate all these things during the Great Vigil of Easter on Holy  Saturday. It’s a full week, to be sure, but the most important week of the year for we who believe. And it’s  not a week to be consumed with worries over what we’ll be wearing to Easter Sunday worship services or  what we’ll be serving for dinner on Easter Sunday. Our spiritual energy should be expended on making  absolutely certain that we’re fully prepared to receive the inestimable gift of salvation when Christ rises on  Easter, when we will shout with believers around the world “Christ is Risen! He is Risen, Indeed!” Alleluia,  Amen! 

With our love in Christ, 

Karen and Greg 

So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, crying out,  “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord,  even the King of Israel!” John 12:13

A Palm Sunday Devotion for your Family 

ABOUT THIS DEVOTION: Your family will plan a party for Jesus. 

Before you start, gather these supplies: Bible; paper; and markers, crayons, or   colored pencils

Instructions:  

Everyone think about the BEST party you’ve ever been to. Now, go around the room and share what  party you’re thinking of and what made it the BEST.  

After you’re done sharing, you and your family will plan a party for Jesus. It’s up to you if you want to  make this a real party or an imaginary one.  

Together, talk about how your family would throw a welcome party for Jesus. Get creative! Write or  draw what your party for Jesus would include. Who would you invite? What food would you prepare?  Would you have music? Dancing? What kind of decorations would you have? 

Read Luke 19:36-40 to your family. Talk about it!  

∙ What do you think of how people praised and welcomed Jesus when he entered  Jerusalem on Palm Sunday?  

∙ How is our party plan like or unlike how the people of Jerusalem welcomed Jesus?  ∙ Why do you think it’s important for our family to praise Jesus? 

Pray! 

Have someone in your family start the prayer, and then go around the room and let everyone add  their own word.  

Dear Jesus, thank you for being here with us every day. I want to praise you because  ___________. In your name, amen. 

Wishing you joy and peace in your day! Remember, God’s got this.

© Group Publishing, Inc. 

Pastors Message

Reaching Out from

Grand Lake Community Chapel

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Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Greetings in Christ!

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it!  On this cold, blustery, icy day, let us rejoice that we have warm places to stay, and let us be glad that this icy weather won’t be around for very long.  And let us rejoice and be glad that there are men and women who are working hard to clear the roads and keep the power flowing to our homes.  Let us hold salt truck drivers, utility workers, law enforcement personnel, and first responders in our prayers for their safety as they work to keep us safe and warm.

It’s almost impossible to think that this is our last email of March!  In only two days it will be April, and the last two weeks of Lent will be ahead of us; what are we going to do with these last days of spiritual introspection and preparation?  For many of us, we’d like to declare that we’re fully prepared for the events of Holy Week and the glories of Easter; we’ve done all the hard work of setting ourselves right with God, so all we must do now is wait.  Wouldn’t that be nice?  The truth is that for most of us, there’s still more to be done; maybe the hardest work of Lent is still ahead of us.  There’s no doubt that by observing a Holy Lent thus far we’re better prepared for what is to come than we might otherwise be.  But in our humanness, we may have avoided some of the big challenges in our faith walks, hoping that what we’ve done in our Lenten journeys will be enough without having to tackle the “big uglies” that lurk in the deepest recesses of our souls.  Sadly, it’s the “big uglies” that can keep us from reveling in a rich relationship with the Divine: “uglies” like jealousy, self-centeredness, living with a sense of lack instead of sense of abundance, not fully trusting in God for all things.  These last days of Lent present us with an opportunity to deal with the “big uglies,” hopefully once and for all, so that we are truly ready for the new life in Christ that we will celebrate on Easter Sunday.

Pray for Ukraine, pray for Russia, pray for peace.  Remember that God is good, all the time; and all the time, God is good!

With our love in Christ,

Karen and Greg


The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. 2 Peter 3:9

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Wishing you joy and peace in your day!  Remember, God’s got this.

Pastors Message

Reaching Out from 

Grand Lake Community Chapel

Wednesday, March 23, 2022 

Greetings in Christ! 

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it! OK, so it’s gloomy outside, rainy, snowy,  windy, icy, slushy, and cold; and we’re supposed to rejoice and be glad?? Of course we are! As much as the  early spring weather affects our activities and our plans, we can still rejoice in a new day in which to serve  others, to learn, to grow, and to continue making ourselves ready for Holy Week just 17 days from today! We  can be glad that the weather outside, frightful though it may be, cannot dampen the love of God, the grace of  our Lord Jesus Christ, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit! We can rejoice and be glad that we are not living  in a war zone, as are our Ukrainian brothers and sisters, and we can rejoice and be glad that there are myriad  ways that we can help ease their suffering from the safety and comfort of our homes. 

It seems that more than the weather is gloomy these days; simply turn on the radio or TV to catch the daily  news, and there will be an endless litany of bad news. Inflation, gas prices, political division, and war in  Europe dominate the news cycle, and we’re all beginning to feel the pinch at the grocery store and at the gas  pump. Pundits and self-styled experts tell us how to change our lives to adjust to the new realities, just as  we’re emerging from the constraints of the pandemic, and more often than not their advice is contradictory.  So what are we to do? We are to pray; pray for peace, pray for wisdom, pray that love prevails. And we are to  trust; trust that God’s got this, that he will guide us to a better place, a better way of being, and that he will  show us how to fix the mess – if we’re willing to listen. That’s the last “to do;” listen. Listen for the still, small  voice of God that will tell us what to do, how to do it, and when to do it to begin the process of healing the  world. 

With our love in Christ, 

Karen and Greg 

Moreover, he said to me, “Son of man, take into your heart all my  words which I will speak to you and listen closely. Ezekiel 3:10

Daily Talk Time: A Family Activity for Lent by Group Publishing Inc.

Wherever you go, you can show Jesus’ love. Tell about three places you’re planning to go this week. Who can  you show Jesus’ love to in each place?  ——————————————————————————– Jesus gives us hope for the future! What’s one thing you hope will happen to your family soon?  ——————————————————————————– Jesus’ friends weren’t feeling so brave after Jesus was arrested. Tell about a time you were brave. ——————————————————————————– People cheered for Jesus when he rode into Jerusalem on a donkey! If you could pick one person to cheer you  on constantly, who would you pick? Why that person? What would you want them to say? ——————————————————————————– God’s people were waiting and waiting for Jesus, the Messiah, to come. What’s something you’d wait in line all  day to do?  ——————————————————————————– Jesus spent a lot of time with his disciples. Who’s someone you wish you could spend more time with? ——————————————————————————– The week leading up to Easter was filled with good times and bad times for Jesus. Tell about one good thing  from the last week and one not-so-good-thing from the last week. ——————————————————————————– Jesus brings joy to the world! Tell about a time you felt joyful. When was it? What do you think caused you to feel joy? ———————————————————————————

Wishing you joy and peace in your day! Remember, God’s got this.

Pastors Message

Reaching Out from

Grand Lake Community Chapel

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Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Greetings in Christ!

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it!  Let us rejoice in near spring-like temperatures, and let us rejoice that the weather forecast for the next several days points the way inexorably to the arrival of spring on March 20th.  Which coincidentally will be Mr. Rogers Day!!

The gentle, kind message of Mr. Rogers, a Presbyterian minister, is sorely needed in our world today.  His signature song, “It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” that opened every show of “Mr. Rogers Neighborhood,” expresses a simple, but powerful, sentiment; we are all neighbors, regardless of how far distant we are from somebody else.  This means that Ukraine is our neighbor, Russia is our neighbor, and all the nations of the world are our neighbors.  We don’t always agree with our neighbors, we don’t always like them very much, and sometimes we’d really rather they mind their own business; that’s equally true whether our neighbor is right next door, or on the other side of the world.  Our neighbors in Ukraine need our help, our neighbors in Russia need our collective arm around their shoulders pointing out that they’re not being very good neighbors right now, and our neighbors in other parts of our own country need our support – not our ridicule.  Each of us can contribute to ending the vitriol by adopting a more Mr. Rogers-like approach to those around us; we can turn down the volume a bit when sharing our opinions, and we can be more intentional when we listen.  Much of what Lent offers us is the opportunity to reassess our worldview; and if we remember that we’re all neighbors, if we hear again (or hear for the first time) the words of Mr. Rogers’ immortal song, perhaps we can move this huge neighborhood that is the planet Earth in a positive direction. And if you have any doubt about who your neighbor is, we refer you to Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37)…. Emoji

See the source image “So, let’s make the most of this beautiful day.  Since we’re together we might as well say: Would you be mine?  Could you be mind?  Won’t you be my neighbor?  Won’t you please?  Won’t you please?  Please won’t you be my neighbor?” See the source image

With our love in Christ,

Karen and Greg


“Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.” Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.” Luke 10:36-37

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From the Desk of

TOBY THE CHURCH DOG
March 2022

Hello my friends!

I’m not one of those “lay-abouts;” I leap out of bed when my dad’s alarm goes off in the morning and keep him company as he goes downstairs.  Mom seems never to hear his alarm; I’m concerned that she may have a hearing problem. Dad is so good to me!  He opens the door for me to go outside, AND lets me back in!  He even fills my food and water dishes so they are waiting for me when I come inside after I’ve done what I had to do—if you know what I mean… Then I cuddle with Dad in his chair; and possibly, now and then, try to dip my tongue into his coffee mug.  It rarely works though… Then I go back upstairs and settle in next to Mom until she wakes; sometimes I can get in a pretty good nap!

Do any of you like to take naps? I love cozying in for a little power nap, especially on a chilly winter’s day! All I need is a spot to stretch out, or snuggle in, depending on the temperature.  I’m happiest when a blanket or pillow are left lying about and I’m snug as a bug in a rug!  I’m even happier when it is dark outside and I hear my parents calling, “Toby, it’s bedtime!” That means it’s time for me to wake from my diligent guarding of my house and family, and to bound up the stairs to the bed that I allow my parents to share with me.  Pretty smart, too; don’t you think? 

.A dog lying on a bed

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I’m told that I’m quite cheerful in the morning, beginning the day with a positive energy and hopefulness.  I always greet my loved ones with kisses and cuddles, and a wagging tail (and body). If my family seems willing, I even offer my tummy for some belly rubs! Then, I give out some more cuddles and kisses, and race for one of my favorite toys to share. Nothing like a little play time to get one’s day going in the proper frame of mind!

You know, we have every reason to begin and end our days with joy in our hearts, because that is where Christ lives! We are told that He makes His home there through faith.  How wonderful it is to live in His love every day!

Wishing you warmth, great fun, and lots of joy!

With love from your Church Dog,

TOBY

That Christ may make His home in your hearts through faith, that you, being rooted and grounded in love.  Ephesians 3:17

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Wishing you joy and peace in your day!  Remember, God’s got this.

Pastors Message

Reaching Out from

Grand Lake Community Chapel

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Wednesday, March 9, 2022

Greetings in Christ!

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it!  Let us rejoice in having made it through the first week of Lent, and let us be glad that we have 30 more days to lean into our chosen discipline(s) for the season!  The good news is that you don’t have to have finished firming up your relationship with the Divine by now, there’s time to keep making progress towards a deeper connection with the Triune God!

We sincerely hope that you’re taking advantage of the 40 days of Lent (not counting Sundays) to re-center yourselves around your faith life; it’s a rare thing in the 21st Century to have the gift of time, without distractions, to ponder important things.  And few things are more important than faith in these trying times.  The war between Ukraine and Russia appears to be intensifying, energy prices are spiraling ever-upward, as is the cost of just about everything we buy on a regular basis, and the political squabbling at every level of the government shows no sign of relenting.  Yet, we who believe know full well that these things are temporary disruptions, for we know the great and eternal truth is that we are loved by Almighty God, and that he wants only good things for us; and that at the end of the day, all will be well. It may not be what we would have chosen were we in charge, but we know with unshakable certainty that it will be good!

By the way, don’t forget to “Spring Forward” on Saturday night – you wouldn’t want to be an hour late for worship!!


With our love in Christ,

Karen and Greg

Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care on him; for he cares for you.  1 Peter 5:6-7 

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-Set your clocks forward on Saturday night!

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Wishing you joy and peace in your day!  Remember, God’s got this.

Pastors Message

Reaching Out from

Grand Lake Community Chapel

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Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Greetings in Christ!

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it!  Let us rejoice that today is Ash Wednesday, a very special day in our journey towards the cross, and let us be glad that we are able to gather in worship to observe the beginning of a Holy Lent for all.

This evening, we will gather both at Grand Lake Community Chapel and Westminster Presbyterian Church for simple, but very meaningful services, during which we will impose ashes on the foreheads (or back of hands) of those who choose to participate in this ancient act of penitence and remembrance that begins the Lenten Season.  The 40 days that follow, not including Sundays, are intended to give us time and space to make ourselves spiritually ready for Easter; how you choose to observe this season is entirely up to you.  You can add things to your daily routine that will help sharpen your focus on the Divine, or you can remove things from your daily routine that distract you from focusing on the Divine; regardless, we urge you to focus on the Divine in a more intentional way during these 40 days.

If you are able to join us in worship this Ash Wednesday, we invite you to think of the ashes that are surrounding our Ukrainian brothers and sisters this day, as their nation is being laid waste by missiles and bombs for absolutely no reason.  As Ukrainian cities burn to ashes, let us be filled with the flames of the Holy Spirit urging us to lend assistance to the Ukrainian people in whatever way we can – including our fervent prayers for peace.

With our love in Christ,

Karen and Greg

Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life,
and the man became a living being. Genesis 2:7

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Wishing you joy and peace in your day!  Remember, God’s got this.

Pastors Message

Reaching Out from

Grand Lake Community Chapel

Seagull Point Park , Michigan , United States

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Greetings in Christ!

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it!  Let us rejoice that the storm has finally abated, and let us be glad for those hard-working men and women who are out and about clearing away the snow and trying to address the icy roads and utility lines.  Please offer up prayers of thanksgiving for these hardy souls, and prayers for their safety as they work on our behalf.  Last week, we celebrated a respite from frigid temperatures; today, not so much…

This is our last weekly update for the month of February and our last one in the Season of Epiphany.  This coming Sunday we will celebrate the Transfiguration of the Lord, that day when Jesus was joined on the mountaintop by Moses and Elijah, offering a glimpse of the glories of Heaven to come.  It’s kinda’ interesting to think that as the Lord is transfigured, so our worship will be transfigured; our focus will be more contemplative as we approach Easter.  While Sundays during the Season of Lent aren’t technically days of the season, being labeled Sundays “in” Lent instead of Sundays “of” Lent; the Scriptures lead inexorably the cross, as should our personal preparations for the most important day in our Christian tradition.  Lent is a marvelous gift, a time to do our best to set aside distractions and stumbling blocks, and work towards a right relationship with God.  All of us have things in our lives that get in the way of living out our faith, and Lent gives us the opportunity to put them away for a time. Who knows, maybe by the end of the Lenten season, you’ll forget what those things were, and have no need to bring them back into your life!  We urge you to embrace the 40 days of Lent, and to set aside time each day to be still and listen for the still, small voice of God inviting you into a new and richer relationship with him.  He loves you, you know; and so do we.

With our love in Christ,

Karen and Greg

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 2 Corinthians 5:17

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Pastors Message

Reaching Out from 

Grand Lake Community Chapel

Wednesday, February 16, 2022 

Greetings in Christ! 

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it! Let us rejoice in a respite from the  bitter cold of winter and be glad for a day of warmth to clear away some of the snow and ice that is  stubbornly adhered to our sidewalks and driveways! Of course, in the give-and-take of midwinter weather,  the forecasted rain most likely won’t be helpful if temperatures drop overnight. Gotta’ love winter  in Northern Michigan! 

So much is happening in the world today that we’d like to cry out “stop!” We’d like to get off the merry-go-round of the news cycle, laden as it is with conflicting accounts of just about everything, and just be still for a  while to collect our thoughts. We seek respite, but aren’t entirely sure where to find it, and some of us may  well feel more than a twinge of guilt for wanting to step away from the noise. Yet Jesus Christ took time away  from the crowds to rest and pray; God commanded us to observe a day of rest for our own good. It’s OK to  step away, it’s healthy and restorative to stop; it’s empowering to pray and uplifting to listen for God’s  response. This may not be the ideal day to take a walk or take a drive into the countryside to find a peaceful  place, but it’s possible to find that peaceful place in our own homes; and once we find that peaceful place, it’s  more than OK to be still and know that God is present. Just a few minutes is all it takes to reset our lives, just  a simple prayer is all it takes to reconnect with the Divine. You’ll almost certainly find that your stress level  drops, your breathing eases, and solutions to those things that are weighing heavily on your heart will be  much easier to see. Give it a try! What have you got to lose? And just how much will you gain? 

With our love in Christ, 

Karen and Greg 

Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you;  he will never let the righteous be shaken. Psalm 55:22

Wishing you joy and peace in your day! Remember, God’s got this.