October 18, 2019
Dear Peachtree Road Family,
I hope this note finds you well. Let me begin this week’s message with some church financial news. The Finance Committee met earlier this week and has asked me to share with you an update.
As we begin the fourth quarter of the year, we need $2.75 million to meet our budget. You have generously supported the church this year, and I want you to know that all of our ministry goals for the year are within reach! However, that is not a certainty. Our giving to the 2019 operating budget got off to a slow start; and, while the last six months have tracked as predicted, we have not made up the first quarter deficit ($300,000). Therefore, in order to accomplish all of our goals for the year, we need your help:
- Do your best to stay current in your pledged giving. Sometimes it isdifficult to catch up at the end of the year when you have gotten behind.
- If you did not pledge to support the operating budget of Peachtree Road, please know that your generous giving would be much appreciated. Every gift, no matter the amount, will make a difference in the ministry of the church.
- Please consider making an extra gift to your church. If every one of us gives an extra gift in this last quarter, I am confident we will end the year on budget.
It’s a bit like the miracle of the loaves and the fishes. When the boy offered the little that he had, Jesus took it, thanked God, multiplied it, and fed 5000 people. In fact, the leftovers filled 12 baskets! In a similar way, when we express our love for God through an offering of a gift, our Lord multiplies it to bless the lives of thousands in significant ways. Thank you for your faithfulness in so many ways to the ministry of Peachtree Road.
In other financial news, we are embarking upon stewardship time, and you are invited to consider your place in the ministry of this great church. I hope you have received a brochure from the church inviting you to be “All In” at Peachtree Road. Here is how you can help:
- If you have pledged in the past, thank you. Please consider an increase in your pledge toward next year’s budget and make your pledge this month.
- If you have not pledged in the past but do give to the church, please know we are grateful for your gifts. We hope that this year you will take the next step and make a pledge to the operating budget. This gesture will help our Finance Committee set a budget that reflects the hopes and dreams of Peachtree Road.
- If you neither pledge nor give, please consider the blessings of your life and plan to give something (really, any gift would be helpful – even $10 per week!) next year. I want you to experience the joy of knowing you helped make a difference.
- Let us all strive to be tithers (giving 10% of our income) as an offering to God in gratitude for the blessings of life. In order to grow toward that goal, I hope you will consider taking a step toward that level this next year by increasing your pledge by 1% of your annual income.
For your convenience, you may pledge through the church app or website. Again, thank you for your support of the ministry of this great church.
I am excited about worship this Sunday and hope you are experiencing spiritual growth through our series entitled “Blessed.” Each week we are considering the Beatitudes found in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5. Last week we considered the sixth beatitude:
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” Matthew 5:8
Sunday’s message really struck a chord with me. The pace at which we live our lives in the 21st century is exhilarating…and exhausting. We cannot continue working late, driving ourselves harder than ever before, and burning the candle at both ends without hitting the proverbial wall. I don’t know much about auto racing, but I do understand that even the most expensive, finely-tuned cars in the world can’t go 500 miles without regular pit stops. In a similar way, our souls need Sabbath – a regular time of worship that purifies our hearts and helps us experience the blessing of seeing God in our midst. Sabbath rest. I hope that is a helpful thought for you.
This week we will turn our attention to Jesus’ seventh beatitude:
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.”
On Christmas Eve we proclaim Jesus to be the Prince of Peace and we celebrate God’s gifts to us of love, joy, hope, and peace. However, along with the prophet Jeremiah, we cry out, “Peace! Peace! Whereas there is no peace…” On Sunday we will consider what it means to be peacemakers and what we need to do to bring peace into our world. I look forward to sharing this message with you.
Finally, let me offer you a “save the date” note. On Sunday, November 10, Dr. Tom Long will be here at Peachtree Road to speak at 10:00 am in the sanctuary on the topic of Hope. Tom is one of the most sought-after preachers in the country, and he will be talking with us about finding hope in a world that oftentimes seems hopeless. We are pleased to have him join us to share out of his wit and wisdom a message of hope. Please mark your calendar and plan to be with us.
I am grateful for your prayers, presence, gifts, service, and your witness to the Gospel you provide to others through the ministry of Peachtree Road. Your participation enables us to be a vital church through which the Spirit of Christ transforms the lives of others.
I look forward to worshiping with you Sunday!