The Sweetness of that Hour
Last Wednesday, nearly sixty members of the Pearce family gathered for a service of prayer in Parmerter Chapel – the first of three such services being held this summer. The focus of our June gathering was to express to God our gratitude for His past faithfulness to our congregation.
A second prayer time, one we’ve chosen to call “Blankets of Prayer,” will be held on Wednesday, July 19. This second gathering will be held outdoors on Pearce’s Orchard Street property, and families will be encouraged to bring their own blankets or lawn chairs for the event. Prayer on that evening will center on current needs for our church as we move through this year of transition.
Jess Newcomb was among those I asked to prepare a prayer for our June service. I thought you might enjoy reading her prayer of gratitude. (The photo above is of Jess and her family.)
Abba. Father. Daddy. Teacher. We come before You tonight as Your children. Gathered together. At Your sovereign, loving feet.
As little children scramble for their spot on the story rug at school, raising their hands with passionate tales of their minute childhood adventures and then zipping their little lips to listen to their teacher tell stories that give their imaginations wings, God, we come to You tonight.
We have found our spot on the story rug at Your feet.
We are raising our hands and our lives to You. Passionately thankful for the many tales You have given us as Pearce Church. Abundantly grateful for the adventures we’ve had in Your Presence here. God, You have always been faithful to us. Providing us with godly and capable leaders, protecting us when we needed it, and guiding us in directions we needed to go. Our congregation has a long history, Lord, and its length is but a speck on a timeline, yet You care about this speck so dearly. Thank You, Lord, for that.
We are zipping our lips to listen to you tell us stories that give our imagination wings. Thank You for Your Word, Lord. Thank You for loving us so much that You gave us Your Word for our lives. May we always cherish it and reverence Your holy Word here at Pearce as we have in the past. Help us to be joyful always, pray continually, and give thanks in all circumstances as we seek You first, Jesus.
Thank You for all the ways You’ve given Pearce the resources of people and finances to reach out to those in need. Groceries, gifts to kids at Christmas, a gym to do sports and Kids Gym ministries, a much sought after daycare and preschool in our community, our partnership with Nzige, and Morning Moms ministry just to name a few.
You are faithful and trustworthy. We know You will continue to be good to us as we put You first in all things.
As our time comes to a close tonight, and we withdraw from this story rug of sweet prayer, may we joyfully reflect upon our time of sharing with and listening to You, the Almighty Creator of heaven and earth, knowing that You are God and we are not. And, oh, how much comfort and peace we find in that fact. We rest in it, Lord. Amen.
Cool Worship on Saturdays
Last Friday, with weekend forecasts calling for temps in the nineties, we made the decision to move our Saturday evening worship service to Pearce’s main sanctuary. The nearly one hundred worshipers in attendance that evening appeared quite relieved as they entered our facility and discovered that the worship venue was relocated to our wonderfully air-conditioned sanctuary.
We have decided to simply designate the main sanctuary as the location of our Saturday services for the duration of the summer season. As a result, through Saturday, September 2, you are invited to join us for our 5pm service in Pearce’s sanctuary. Hope you can join us!
Speaking of Saturday Worship
Following this coming Saturday’s worship service, we will bid a fond and temporary farewell to Julie Smith as the assistant music and worship director. Julie is about to give birth to her third child, another son. She’ll be enjoying several weeks of maternity leave the remainder of the summer.
Julie recently wrote:
Our family is grateful to the Pearce congregation for their ongoing interest and prayers as we prepare to welcome a new baby boy to our home in the next couple of weeks. This will be my final weekend (June 24/25) serving at Pearce for the next two months (barring an early surprise!) as we take some time to adjust to this precious little life. Thanks especially to my friend and colleague, Tim Lambert, for his ongoing flexibility and willingness to organize substitute musicians for the summer services! For those of you who regularly attend on Saturdays, you’ll be treated to a wonderful mix of current and guest musicians over the next weeks. I look forward to my return later in August as our faith community prepares for the new school year. Again, thank you for the prayers—and please continue to remember us as we journey through this momentous season!
This Weekend at Pearce
Pastor Jeremy is opening the Scriptures this coming weekend, as we continue our journey through First Peter in our sermon series “Uprooted and Displaced.” In his message “Are You Being Served?” Pastor Jeremy will examine 1 Peter 2:11-3:7. I hope you’ll join us this Saturday or Sunday!
Enter the Maker Fun Factory
Things will look a bit different when you enter Pearce this weekend. Our facility has been transformed into a world where kids can become hands-on-inventors who discover they are loving crafted by God. This is, of course, all a part of this year’s Vacation Bible School that begins this Monday and extends through Thursday.
Thanks to the great decorating crew under the leadership of Jessie Keim for turning Pearce into a “Maker Fun Factory!” In the photo, Sam and Morgan Monaghan pause for a moment with Jessie!
Good Summer Reads
I enjoy hearing what people are reading, especially during these days of summer that invite moments with a glass of ice tea and a good book on the back yard swing. Julie Grimm, Pearce member and Dean of the School of Natural and Social Sciences at Roberts, recently showed me her reading list.
She recently finished Sharon Garlough Brown’s Sensible Shoes, a novel about four women on a spiritual formation journey. Julie said, “This is probably a book more for women. It weaves teaching about spiritual discipline practices in an interesting story.”
Julie is hoping to find time for Flunking Sainthood: A Year of Braking the Sabbath, Forgetting to Pray, and Still Loving my Neighbor, by Jana Riess. A good friend recommended this book to Julie and Amazon.com describes it as “a funny yet vulnerable story of the quest for spiritual perfection and the reality of spiritual failure.”
Pearce Memory #217
Last week, I came across some cards that young children in the church had given me soon after my arrival at Pearce. I noticed one of the cards was from Kevin Dick, now a young man whose graduation from high school we celebrated in a recent worship service. Kevin is now preparing to enter Grove City College this fall.
One of the great joys for me over the past ten years has been watching our children grow and mature in Christ. I always marvel at the ways He is at work in the lives of those around us! Thanks Kevin, and all the kids of Pearce, for responding to God’s work in your heart and life!
Gracious People Sharing Talents
The other day, I noticed Ardell Dean outside Parmerter Chapel, hard at work preparing our facility for the installation of nine new windows in the basement of Parm. Over the nearly seventy years of the building’s life, the old windows had rotted and were sorely in need of replacement. Ardell is ensuring that our building continues to be used for the work of the Kingdom. His talents and your financial generosity make this possible. Thanks!
What a Team!
Pastor Kathy met on Tuesday with three of our teenagers who are serving as preschool teachers at next week’s VBS. I love pastoring an intergenerational congregation, and celebrate the gifted individuals of all ages who serve Christ and His Kingdom! (L to R: Kaitlyn Sipes, Emma Draper, and Grace Hunt)