Carry the Gospel. It Ain't Heavy!  

Galatians 5:1-- It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

I can now say that I have spent a summer in Alabama (as defined by a school calendar.) For me it has been exciting. I am becoming acquainted with many of you at First Lutheran and acquainted with friend from my neighborhood. You have brought joy to my heart.

Over the past months, I have had the opportunity to begin to hear your story as a congregation Your story is over 125 years old, so I think at this point I am still missing some of the minute (lol) details.

It does not take long to hear in that story many instances of God's great hand of favor on the people, mission and ministry here at First Lutheran. It is also easy to hear the trials and frustrations. Could it be that God has us in His hand right now, with all of that history, so that He might use us to His glory? I believe so.

The reason that I believe this way is that I see a people that are humbled and a people that have a strong desire to set their own comforts aside and to come together and love God, each other and their community above their desire to meet their own needs.

This summer the leaders of First Lutheran have gathered focusing their attention on organizing for mission. I know that in a lot of congregations not much gets done in the summer, but I believe that God and His people were at work here. Now, we are transitioning on to something new.

I AM SO EXCITED that we are kicking off a new season at First Lutheran. This month (Sunday, September 13) we will be celebrating RALLY DAY. I believe that this is the kickoff for much to happen. I would like to invite you to be a part of all that God wants to do here. I pray that this is an opportunity for you and your family to let Christ free you from the yoke of the slavery of sin, guilt and shame. I invite you to engage in the process of Bible study whether it is Sunday morning Adult Bible Study/Sunday School, or mid week Bible study to be encouraged by the powerful, transformational, freeing Word of God. I invite you to become equipped and involved in carrying the Gospel into a desperate, hopeless world. I invite you to experience the reality of God's plan to use you as His instrument and experience the fulfillment that it brings.

BE SET FREE as you live out life being drawn into the center of God's will for you. CARRY THE GOSPEL. It ain't heavy!!!

Most of my thoughts and impressions are about First Lutheran and all of you. The impressions are wonderful. You have all been so helpful in getting me through this transition. I get so excited to think that we are partnering in the God's Mission in this place. My first impression is

God Be Praised!

Pastor Tommy

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