From Our Pastor

disciples of christ

Best Gifts: Hope – Peace – Joy - Love

Ready set go. Write a letter – an annual report, meet the deadline, make it informative, made it inspiring, make it funny - ugh - so I put fin-gers to keyboard. My mind dances in memories of 2016 and four years’ of ministry at Lone Pine. From new faces to familiar friends, from polite handshakes to heart felt hugs, from tip toeing suggestions to respectful debate. The journey is a joyous one filled with hope for 2017 and be-yond. My peace of mind and soul is a testimony to the love God is pour-ing out on me and this congregation – faithful followers of Jesus the Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit. Praise God. Amen

It’s the third week of Advent, traditional Christmas music fills my office and my soul, a white out (no not the Penn State type) is blanketing the beautiful Lone Pine grounds. Soon my wife Jan will arrive, then we will attend the Thomas Campbell Apartments Christmas party. It’s a joy and honor to serve on this Board of Directors with Richard and Janice, and other Disciple members and ministers from First Christian and Fairhill Manor.

I perused my 2016 calendar and the first name on the January page was Bill. Bill Foflygen was a former minis-ter, an Elder and Bible teacher here at Lone Pine. A friend, a mentor, a com-rade in Christ. Bill loved God and God loved Bill. He lived life full of joy, a gift from God for his body was a wreck. Up to his last day of life on earth he lived hope in Jesus’ promise - “I am going to prepare a place for you … I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.” John 14:2-3. At the funeral service peace prevailed. Bill taught me many things about being a pastor. I miss Bill.

Then I noticed the back of a Sunday bulletin sitting on my desk, it reads;

Lone Pine Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) exists to:
Lead people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.
By: Seeking the Truth of Jesus Christ.
Walking in Faith with the Holy Spirit.
Worshipping the Heavenly Father in Love.

I’m at peace with the way our ministries are fulfilling this obligation. Scripture fo-cused teaching is my sermon style and bases for subject matter bible studies for our adult Sunday school class and SUP family ministry classes. Jesus challenges us through scripture to live life as follow-ers of Him in this culture rather that allow the culture to define what it means to be Christian. I stand on the Word of God. The Holy Spirit is alive and well in us on our walk together toward faithfulness. Many times in our informal conversation in the pavilion after SUP, and the regular stream of young adults that stop by my office to talk, and the most recently created group – He-Men for Christ – men’s bible study prayer group. (take no notice of the Little Rascals picture on the next page) We are being challenged by the Word of God to walk the walk in our marriage and as fathers and as Men of Christ. Pray for us.

My hope and prayer is that the seeds we are planting and watering and fertilizing each week will produce holy fruit. That our love of God will grow each and every day so the gift of peace from Jesus will explode into a life of joyous worship. Worship, an expression of our responsive love of God. Amen

Pastor John H. Owen