“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit.” - 1 Thessalonians 5:16-19
This Sunday is our Annual General Meeting! For the first time in two years it will be in-person. I looked back and we did, in fact, have an in-person AGM in February of 2020. But our last two have been on Zoom. I am looking forward to seeing everyone in-person and discussing the agenda before us.
Our past in-person AGM’s have always focused on gratitude. And this one will focus on giving thanks as well. In his letter to the Thessalonians, the Apostle Paul reminded them to rejoice always and give thanks in all circumstances. He did not say this lightly. He meant all circumstances, the good and the bad. The reality is that nonprofits in every sector are facing big challenges right now. Every church in the Presbytery is struggling with the same things Briarwood is struggling with. Briarwood is not alone. When we take Paul’s words to heart, and intentionally rejoice always and give thanks in these challenging times, we open our eyes and our hearts to see the amazing work Jesus is doing through the power of the Holy Spirit in our midst. We have so much to be grateful for!
As you read through the Annual report, I encourage you to hone in on what the Holy Spirit is doing among us. God is at work in amazing ways through all of our ministries, through all of our leaders, through all of you. While we do have challenges, we also have joys. It’s important to pull out those joys so that we notice the work of the Holy Spirit and celebrate what Jesus is doing among us. If we only focus on our challenges, we quench the Spirit.
We will do a gratitude exercise together during the meeting. As you read the report, notice all that YOU have to be thankful for at Briarwood. I look forward to seeing you on Sunday for a time of rejoicing and giving thanks, because this is the will of God for us in Christ Jesus.
Grace and peace,