4 I thank my God always for you, because of God’s grace that was given to you in Christ Jesus. 5 That is, you were made rich through him in everything: in all your communication and every kind of knowledge, 6 in the same way that the testimony about Christ was confirmed with you. 7 The result is that you aren’t missing any spiritual gift while you wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed. 8 He will also confirm your testimony about Christ until the end so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 God is faithful, and you were called by him to partnership with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
1 Corinthians 1:4-9
I do thank God for you. Our seven years together have been an incredible journey of faith that, in my opinion, has left us all enriched and improved. I find myself bragging on this congregation everywhere I go. And in some conference circles, that says a whole lot. You have, indeed, worked hard to be in partnership with Christ in this community. It shows. And it really does mean something and make a difference. I am excited about the future of South Hill United Methodist Church, even though I will not be your pastor walking with you through it. But rest assured, you have left an indelible mark on my heart.
As Paul continues in his letter urging the church in Corinth to be together in the work of Christ, so I urge you. Keep your focus on the mission at hand, and the distractions the world keeps throwing at us will not prevail. We keep being bombarded with other things to focus on than Christ. There are too many hurting people around us, especially now, to lose focus. South Hill UMC is uniquely positioned in many ways to be able to address that hurt. Very few churches are where we are post-Covid. Hear that and celebrate that. Do God’s work with boldness. This community needs you.
Thank you for your faith, your passions, your dedication, and your work. You are all something special, and I will always thank God for you.
Yours in Christ,