Because of expected ice storm on Sunday January 9, only 8:30 worship will take place onsite.

August 10, 2023

A Pastoral Word. . . What We Have Seen and Heard

Pastor Kevin Freeman

August 10, 2023
Do you remember John the Baptist’s time of doubt? Sitting in prison, he sent messengers to Jesus, asking if Jesus was the Messiah, or if he had gotten it wrong. Jesus replied, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have good news preached to them” (Luke 7:22).

Like John, we sometimes endure similar periods of discouragement and disillusionment. They come when we are tired, when we experience hardship, when our questions seem to go unanswered, or when growth in ourselves or others appears negligible. Jesus’ response to John was about observation. What had been seen and heard by John’s messengers?

Our team of 31 people just returned from a mission trip to Appalachia. What we have seen and heard reminds us that Jesus – the same Messiah proclaimed by John – continues His ministry through us. Youth willingly engaged people in spiritual conversations and offered to pray with complete strangers. Adults stepped in to handle logistics for both planning and events like a block party that was held. By God’s hand, our rental van held together until safely reaching the shoulder of I-81, avoiding what could have been a tragic disaster. People were blessed through ministries feeding the homeless. Donations from you, our Redland family, brought needy people to tears and to increased spiritual awareness.

I could keep going on about the mission trip, but there are too many ways we see Christ’s power at work here “at home” among our regular church ministries. This summer we saw a fantastic RBC Camp with a great, unified spirit and several professions of faith. Our Sports Camps brought 60-75 young athletes each week, and the launch of our first STEAM Camp was a great success! Our Redland Summer Challenges on Wednesday evenings brought many people to our campus, including 3 families without a church home who have only attended camps or rec programs in the past. As I write, over 50 people are registered for Saturday’s pig roast, and a cursory glance at the roster suggests several “regulars” for events like this will soon sign up as well. Finally, the WGTS Sticker Stop was yet another opportunity to be a presence in our larger community to show the unity of the larger body of Christ expressed through the unique, Grace-driven character of God’s people at Redland.

With these exciting developments and encouraging responses, what we have seen and heard tells us that we have a great deal to look forward to as the fall months approach. Many of our regular ministries are beginning again as the new program year comes. I encourage you to look at all of the opportunities listed in our newsletter so that you, too, can be involved in the great things the Lord is doing through the willing hands and hearts of our local body of Christ here at Redland.

Your partner in ministry,
Kevin Freeman
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