I hope you all had an enjoyable Mardi Gras. We sure did as we enjoyed a visit from our daughter and my mother. The week was further highlighted by the Gulf Shroes and Orange Beach Presbyterian Choirs in concert. I know I truly enjoyed participating in the choir concert, and we have heard from many who enjoyed attending it. I am so grateful to Pam, Kayla, and Steve for their work in putting it all together, and look forward to more ways that we can gather with our Orange Beach PCUSA family!
You are likely wondering about the steps moving forward in regards to the breast cancer treatment I will undergo, and we are closer to knowing next steps now that we have received the results of genetic testing. Thanks for the continuing prayers and support!
From March 7-13, I wil be participating in the PCUSA’s Board of Pensions Credo Conference for newly ordained ministers. This is a conference that was scheduled to take place last March, but was postoponed due to COVID. This week-long conference is focused on the wholeness and well-being of pastors, looking particularly at spiritual, vocational, physical, emotional and financial health. It is a great gift to both pastor and congregation and I am grateful to be able to participate. During this time, I will be unavailable except in cases of emergency. Please reach out to Pam Winstead or any member of the Session in my absence.
On Sunday we looked at Matthew’s account of the 40 days following Jesus’s baptism in which he was tempted in the wilderness. We noted that during that time, Jesus faced tests around his willingness to be obedient, his willingness to trust God’s provision instead of his own power, if he would opt for celebrity as a way to gain followers, and if he would choose political power or humble love.
Through it all, Jesus chose humility, vulnerability and love. He understood that changing the world wouldn’t happen by becoming like the world and compromising God’s plans. Rather, it is when God is presented uncompromisingly that lives are truly changed. Jesus was given a choice, a life of power or a life of purpose, and he chose purpose. And he chose this in the midst of hardship – hunger, loneliness, exhaustion. He even chose this as the devil attempted to sow seeds of mistrust about Jesus’s identity as the Son of God that had been revealed at his baptism.
We, too, have been named beloved children of God in our baptisms, and we too face hardships in our lives that ask us to choose how we will live. With the power of the Spirit leading us, we are able to choose humility over pride, submission over power, and God’s provision over our possessions. May we all follow the leading of the Spirit, trusting God to provide, choosing humility over celebrity, and living lives of purpose rather than power.
For those unable to join us in-person, Sunday morning worship is livestreamed on our Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/GulfShoresFirstPresbyterianChurch. The service airs each Sunday at 11:00 a.m. and will be available to watch after that as well.
The buzz continues about the Hand-in-Hand Business Center, and as of March 1, we will have have a full-time renters in every room of our former Christian Education Wing! We continue to work on ways in which we can create spaces to support small businesses in our community.
- If you know of those who need a place to park during their visit to Gulf Shores and they would like to use our parking lot, here is the link to share: https://www.premiumparking.com/P2658. You can also pick up postcards at the church to pass on to those who might be interested.
- Keep collecting that loose change and bring it every week to add to the collection! All of the loose change will go toward the ongoing ministry of the church, as we continue to spread the life-changing good news of God’s love.
- The church can now receive donations through Facebook, either by clicking on the “Donate” button on our Facebook Page, or through Fundraisers you can host on your own Facebook page.
- If you have more ideas about how we can creatively fund the ministry of First Presbyterian Church of Gulf Shores, reach out and let me know!
- For safety reasons, at 11:00 a.m. each Sunday, all the doors of the building will be locked EXCEPT the north door that leads into the narthex. If you find yourself running behind, just remember to park up front by that door and enter there.
- Bring your Blessing Box donations (non-perishable items) to church on Sundays or drop them off at the box during the week.
- Presbyterian Pints – March 5 following worship at Big Beach Brewing
- Dinner and Discussion – Tuesdays at 6:00 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall – bring a dish to share
- Chair Yoga led by Donna Holmes – Wednesdays at 11:00 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall
- NO Bible Study 3/2 or 3/9
- If you wish to study at home, here are this week’s scriptures: Genesis 12:1-4a; Psalm 121; Romans 4:1-5, 13-17; John 3:1-17
- NO Craft ‘n’ Chat 3/2 or 3/9
As always, you are welcome to reach out to me via email, text or phone with any needs or just to chat!
Go in peace to love and serve the Lord!
Rev. Chrisy Ennen
email@example.com, (618) 980-9899
"Let all that you do be done in love.”
I Corinthians 16:14
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