Responding to God’s Blessings

October 29, 2021

Dear Peachtree Road Family,

I hope this note finds you well. I don’t know about you, but the World Series is taking its toll on me. These late nights watching and cheering for the Braves have robbed me of sleep; but, oh my, it is fun! I love the way supporting a sports team can bring a community together. This is a wonderful time to be an Atlantan, and the next three nights with the “Fall Classic” being in our city should be exciting. Go Braves!

As October fades into November, we here at Peachtree Road are set to begin a new series on Sunday entitled “Gracious Living.” These messages will focus upon the relationship between joy and gratitude. Some of you are familiar with the work of Dr. Brene Brown, popular speaker and author of The Gifts of Imperfection. In a chapter entitled “Cultivating Gratitude and Joy,” she makes this observation:

“Without exception, every person I interviewed who described living a joyful life or who described themselves as joyful, actively practiced gratitude and attributed their joyfulness to their gratitude practice.”

The phrase that jumps out to me is “practice gratitude.” If you want more joy in your life, practice gratitude. That is what we will strive to do during the next four weeks:

October 31 | Mark 6:30-44 | Grateful for the Little Things

November 7 | Ruth 3:1-5 | Grateful for Our Saints
November 14 | Acts 20:32-38 | The Blessing of Giving

November 21 | Acts 4:32-37 | Great Power and Great Grace

I hope you will participate in one of our services this Sunday – 8:45 am, 10:00 am, 11:15 am, or 5:00 pm. I will be preaching this week at the 5:00 pm service and would love to see you there for that casual but intimate service. I also remind you that all of our services are available by livestream through our church website.

Over the course of the next three weeks, you will receive communication from the church concerning your opportunity to renew your covenant with Christ through Peachtree Road UMC for the coming year by making a commitment to give in support of the church’s 2022 operating budget. Each Sunday you will hear a testimony from a member about how the ministry of the church has made a difference in the lives of others. And, on the church website, you will be able to view the testimonies of others. Throughout the days of the pandemic, the church has sought to offer inspiration, comfort, support, encouragement, and help to all within our reach. You have faithfully participated in worship services, Zoom Bible studies and prayer groups, fellowship opportunities, and outreach projects, and I am grateful. Now is the time for all of us to consider renewing our commitment to Christ, and I hope you will make a pledge or commit to a recurring gift to enable our ministry to continue to thrive. You may make your commitment through the church app or website or by filling out a card at church. Thank you for your support.

Speaking of giving, I understand our church finances were “on track” as we entered the fourth quarter of the year. In other words, both our giving and spending are right where we projected them to be through September. With your help, we will be able to finish the year well and on budget. Also, there is a part of the government’s CARES Act that may make it advantageous for your tax planning for 2021 to give a cash gift to the church. You can find information about this law here and may want to talk with your financial planner about whether this will be helpful for you. Thank you for your generosity.

Finally, let me make you aware you of these events taking place in the coming days:

  • Voting Precinct – Grace Hall will be used on Tuesday, November 2 as a voting precinct for the municipal election. You are encouraged to vote at your designated precinct and let your voice be heard in this year’s election.
  • Covenant House Sleep Out – many of you know that Covenant House is one of the local agencies with whom our church partners to help homeless youth. This ministry seeks to provide young adults with shelter and a network of support to give them the resources they need to thrive in life. In an effort to help raise awareness and funds to support this ministry, I will be sleeping outside with other pastors, rabbis, and business executives from our community on Thursday, November 18. To support my effort, you may give here, through the church’s website, or make your check out to Peachtree Road UMC and marked for “Covenant House Sleep-Out.” Thank you for your support.
  • William Cope Moyers Event – on November 14, our church’s One Lamb Initiative is proud to sponsor an evening with William Cope Moyers, vice president of public affairs and community relations for the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation. He has played a key role in the creation of the newly formed Addiction Alliance of Georgia – a partnership between Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation and Emory Healthcare that aims to advance addiction-related clinical care, education and research. On this special evening, Moyers will share his personal story of the devastation that addiction brought to his life and the peace that came with his decision to remain in recovery. Please plan on joining us for this important event as part of our emphasis on the importance of mental health. You may register here.

Thank you for your faith in Christ, hope in the future, and love for one another.

Grace and peace,

Bill

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