Last Wednesday, I had the chance to preach in the mid-week service at our home church. The text we considered came from 1 Thessalonians 1:2 where Paul offers thanks to God for the Thessalonian Church. As you read the rest of his letter to them, you can tell that Paul is genuinely grateful for this band of persecuted, yet faithful believers. We took time on Wednesday to note that Paul could not say the same of every congregation he wrote to. In fact, the occasion for many of his letters (like Galatians or 1 Corinthians) brought out a tone of frustration more than appreciation.
This past weekend, we had the chance to be with Grace Baptist Church (Highland Falls, NY). This is a ministry for which we can truly offer thanks to God. It is amazing how quickly you can feel at home in certain places with fellow believers.From the very start, Pastor Steve and Debbie Snavely, made us feel welcomed.We enjoyed meals with them, and they even took us out on Saturday to visit nearby West Point.The Warner sisters are buried in the back corner of the West Point Cemetery. It was encouraging to hear of their witness to the soldiers, and the impact they left in the words to the beloved song, “Jesus Loves Me.”On Sunday, we enjoyed the opportunity to interact with this passionate group of believers. It was a privilege to open the Word of God to them and share the ministry God has called our family to at Haven of Grace Seminary.
In the afternoon, Pastor Steve gave us a tour of the nearby Fort Montgomery Fire Department (where he volunteers). The kids had a blast checking out the fire trucks and trying on the equipment.The Fire Department at Fort Montgomery has a piece of steel from the Twin Towers, along with a memorial to those who lost their lives on 9-11. It is important to remember the sacrifice of so many firefighters to who gave their lives to help save others on that dreadful day.Pastor Steve and Miss Debbie (as the kids called her), along with their church are folks we can truly give thanks to God for! We thank God upon every remembrance of them.