Forest Lake Talks

A Message from Ed

February 2, 2022

Dear Friends,

In Sunday’s worship service, our two preachers, Drew Radeker and Marc Shook, reminded us of the core value of the Bible: love. Using Paul’s first letter to the church in Corinth as the basis for their sermons, Drew spoke about love being the “secret ingredient” to true transformation, while Marc referenced “agape,” the Greek work used in Scripture to describe God’s divine, unconditional love for you, me, and all of creation. While we often hear 1 Corinthians 13:1-13 in weddings, it is important to note that Paul is telling those in Corinth the following: All of these characteristics of love I’m mentioning? You’re not doing this! If we are going to be the Body of Christ, we must be patient, not boastful, not arrogant, kind, etc.

What would Paul say to us today, the church in Columbia, SC? Are we patient? Kind? Do we endure all things? Are we irritable? Resentful?

If we’re going to move forward and decide at this point that we will use this “secret ingredient” Drew referenced, there is no better starting point than caring for one another. At the 10 AM worship service on February 13, we will focus on congregational care and hear members from our church family reflect on what Christian caring feels like now, two thousand years after Paul wrote these famous words. You’ll hear from Stephen Ministers, a HOPE (Helping Other Presbyterians Everyday) Team member, and learn more about our prayer shawl ministry. Each of our congregational care ministries at Forest Lake would not thrive or grow without love being the central component.

Congregational care is everchanging in the middle of the pandemic. How can we provide more care for those who live in assisted living homes with visitor restrictions? How can we provide care for those who struggle with loneliness and depression? More can always be done. Love never ends.

Over the next few weeks, I invite you to explore what it means to be the Body of Christ for others in a world that continues to change and grow more arrogant, impatient, and boastful. If you have ideas for congregational care outreach, please contact me. Your ideas are always welcome:

See you soon at FLPC.

Ed Black

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