My wife, Bette and I have been members here at RPC since 1991 and we have benefited in so many ways. Roswell Presbyterian Church has meant so much to me over the years that I am a different man than I was back in 1991. I cannot begin to tell you how grateful I am for ways that God entered my life and affected how I live, how I view the world inside RPC and outside. Looking back honestly I am sure I was more focused on me rather than on what Jesus wanted me to focus on. The church offered all kinds of ways to become active, to get involved, to answer the call of service that Jesus Christ challenges all of us to answer.
The first opportunity came to join the Searchers Adult Sunday School class. Bette and I quickly came to know the members and attended regularly. The class has been an anchor for us - a source of friends, prayer, encouragement, leadership, and genuine Christian fellowship.
Since taking that first step, there have been opportunities to become more involved - serving on the Session, Mission Outreach Council, the Men of RPC, mission organizations supported by RPC like Habitat for Humanity, The Open Door Community, Family Promise, Every Woman Works, and even kitchen duty under the watchful eye of Molly Poister.
I have been asked to consider, "Where has God humbled me?" Actually, I don't believe you can get involved in an organization like Every Woman Works, one of the mission partners RPC supports, and not be humbled by the power of God in terms of the miracles He provides. EWW is a local, faith-based organization that provides training in a Christian environment for women who are typically single parents, jobless, former drug addicts, even felons. They take these ladies, most with children, who do not have any place to go, no one to love them, to care about them, and with the grace of God leads them through the wilderness that has been their lives to see a new world of hope, of love for Jesus, and for the first time, love of themselves. You literally get to see God at work transforming these ladies into people who can get and hold a job, be better parents, and build a healthy independent life that is based on a relationship with Jesus Christ. In this place, God constantly surprised me.
The people that make up RPC are always aware of the challenges that all of us sometimes have to face, and they are always eager to lift you up, to care for you, and pray for you as you face the sometimes harsh realities of life. Recently, I was diagnosed with two rather serious conditions related to my spine. After trying a number of remedies, the severe pain that I was living with every day could only be remedied by extensive surgery. One day as I was waiting for that procedure, I got a call from a member of my Searchers class asking if I would like a prayer quilt. I had not even thought of that but I could not say yes fast enough. I took it with me to the hospital and draped it over me as I slept and as I recuperated in the hospital. After I got home, I continued to have it near me as a reminder that RPC members cared and were praying for me. How powerful! How incredibly strong was the feeling that God was with me and would see me through this ordeal. I am now fully recovered and even enjoying being out on the golf course with other church friends!
When we are surrounded by this congregation and get involved in reaching out to those who need us inside and outside these walls, how can we not be grateful, have a positive attitude, and be motivated to be generous with our time and money? God is at work here. Just look around and His presence will surprise and astonish you.
The Path to Gratitude: Attitude
Attitude is the second step on the path to gratitude. When we approach gratitude eager to be faithful and cheerful, it comes easier and more naturally. God desires for our lives to be filled with cheer and joy. Each of us must consciously try to embrace an attitude of eager cheerfulness.
What are you grateful for...?