January 2023

From Brian, a disciple of Christ Jesus by the will of God, to the church of
Christ that is at Glossbrenner with all the saints who are throughout Mount
Joy: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus
Christ. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father
of mercies and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction
so that we may be able to comfort those who are in affliction.
Did you recognize that introduction? It is a paraphrase of the beginning
of Paul’s second letter to Corinth. God calls us all to comfort the afflicted.
That is a pretty simple job description. It is easy to say, but living in a world
of hurt, how do we live it out? Friends and neighbors may tell you when
they are physically sick or hurt, but people have a way of hiding their spiritual afflictions.

That affliction is the one with eternal consequences! Soul is
everything. How do you go about nurturing, reaching out to and witnessing to a sin sick
soul? If you were a business, how would you rate your performance? Do you
need to change anything? Are you right on target? There is a saying in business that “Your business plan is perfectly suited for the results you are getting.” In other words, “What you are doing
is getting you what you get.” Are you happy with your business plan?
The 2020 census for Mount Joy showed a growth rate of .89% per year.
That comes out to about seventy-five people a year coming to Mount
Joy. What are you doing to get new “customers”? I can already hear
some of the objections: “We are not a business. We are a church”. That
may be true, but the head of your church, your CEO, has told you that
your first priority was to make disciples of Jesus Christ. How would the boss
rate your annual performance review?

2023 looks like the year that Glossbrenner steps out of the old way of doing things. You haven’t determined what new system you want to step
into. I believe that you will have to make a choice this year. One of the
choices makes this a priority: Evangelism and church planting. Do you like
that idea? Another priority is: the work of the local church and robust accountability. Are you ready to be accountable for your evangelism?

New years bring new opportunities. This is the time to take a good assessment of where you are and where you want to be. Will it be a new name
and business as usual? Will you take this opportunity to test your faith in
the unknown? It appears to be a decisive year for Glossbrenner. May
God give you absolute peace with your decision. Happy New Year.

Pastor Brian

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