Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through
our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have obtained access to this
grace in which we stand; and we boast in our hope of sharing the glory of
God. And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that
suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and
character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God's
love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been
given to us. Romans 5:1-5

I am sorry to miss the opportunity to spend most of October with you as I
will at home recovering from heel surgery. By the time I am back, the trees
should be rolling out their fall colors – surrounding us with gold, green, red,
orange, burgundy and yellow. The change will evoke the memories of past
seasons and hopes for the new one. The crisp and tart turn of the weather
can hold the possibility of letting go of what has been to embrace what is to
come in this autumn.
What arrives next in our lives and the life of the church is always grounded
in hope. None of us knows what will happen in the future but we trust that
God is guiding and upholding us. As we enter into a new season, let us
hope and ponder a future that is filled with service and growth so that we
can share our hope.

In Frederick Buechner's book, A Room Called Remember, he wrote, “Then
at last we see what hope is and where it comes from, hope as the driving
power and outermost edge of faith. Hope stands up to its knees in the past
and keeps its eyes on the future. … To remember the past is to see that we
are here today by grace, that we have survived as a gift … remember
above all what God has done in Christ… remember those moments in our
lives when Christ came to us in countless disguises through people who
one way or another strengthened us, comforted us, healed us, judged us,
by the power of Christ alive within them. … we have this high and holy
hope: that what he has done, he will continue to do, that what he has
begun in us and our world, he will in unimaginable ways bring to fullness
and fruition.”
If you have any pastoral concerns over the next several weeks, please,
contact Bert in the church office. Thank you for your patience and prayers
until I see you at the end of the month.
In the Hope of our Lord Jesus Christ,