What Makes You Smile

by | Sep 19, 2017 | West District Newsletter, West District Web Page

Smiley face on blue recycling can

Settling into a new place can take some time, and sometimes learning a new routine.

Like when the recycling comes.

One day I noticed a sticker on our recycling can. See the photo above

Sometimes, we receive a “smile” in the most unlikely and unexpected places!

I smile when I think of all of you and the diligent and faithful work you are doing in the name of Jesus Christ.

More so, I’m grateful for all of you, which brings me to something I recently read about gratitude that I’d like to share:

“Both grace and gratitude have their source in the Latin word gratia, which can mean both favor and pleasure. Thus gratitude is not simply receiving or returning a favor (with the hint of obligation), it is also taking pleasure in some gift or relationship. It is important to recognize that gratitude and grace may even go back to the ancient Sanskrit word gurtas, meaning religious celebration. In essence this is still what saying grace is all about, the celebration of the people, places, and things of our lives by ourselves living a life of gratitude.” –Rueben P. Job and Norman Shawchuck — A Guide to Prayer for All Who Walk with God

The grace of God that works through each of you is seen in wonderful and surprising ways of hope, healing, wonder, and love throughout our district, conference, and world.

When we support UMCOR in the effort to bring relief and hope to those recovering from disasters, God’s grace works through you. When you collect resources to share with those involved in the Early Response Teams, or participate in a response team, God’s grace works though you. When you see the person in need and respond in a way that lets them know that they are not invisible, God’s grace works through you.

In all of the ways that you are open to being stretched to grow, God’s grace works through you.

In all of the wonderful ways that you all are reaching out into your communities and extending extravagant hospitality to all who join in you fellowships, God’s grace works through you.

So many are not only thankful, but grateful for your faithful and diligent work.

We are being a Courageous Church.
We are Loving like Jesus.
We are Acting for Justice.
We are United in Hope.

And, We Are In This Together.

I hope that brings a smile to your face today.
Neil Leftwich Signature


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Author: Neil Leftwich

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