Dear Hope Family,
As we inch our way closer and closer to Easter Sunday and our celebration of the Resurrection, these last days of Lent offer a great opportunity to shine a bright light upon a dark place in our lives and culture: the sometimes hidden and silent, sometimes outward and obvious presence of fear and anxiety.
This coming Wednesday evening, April 10th, our church is hosting a timely and crucial seminar to help us put a name to the menace of fear and anxiety and to help us find ways of getting unstuck in the midst of fear and anxiety. Meredith Spatola, a licensed counselor from The Barnabas Center, will lead the gathering, and I could not be more thankful and expectant for the good work God will do through this evening and beyond. Personally and professionally, I long for insight into how to take off the masks of fear and anxiety, call them by their true names, and cultivate skill in struggling well against the despair they produce.
As of this morning, we have over 100 folks signed up for the seminar. The encouraging part is that most of those already coming are from outside of Hope Church! We have an excellent chance not only to learn together but also to practice warm welcome and hospitality to our community. So please make room to be a part of the evening on Wednesday. The event is free, but we do ask for you to register in advance.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ pertains to all of life. It is not only about the “then and there” of souls in heaven but the “here and now” of our bodies and emotions on earth. I am praying, and invite you to pray with me, that Wednesday evening will bring some of the hope of heaven’s future grace into the present of our fears and anxieties so that we can face the world with the renewed dignity that comes only through Christ!
Grace and peace,