Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it.”

Albert Einstein once said, “Before God we are all equally wise and equally foolish” and I think he was so right. We don’t want to be foolish here at St. John’s. We are raising money for an organ of over a quarter million dollars, we painted the sanctuary and re-furbished the stainedglass windows for almost that amount. So now we will have a beautiful sanctuary with beautiful organ music. What we don’t have is many young families. Our youth groups have dwindled and we are not getting new young people. I was talking to my niece this past weekend and she asked me if our congregation had many young people. I had to say we had very few. She was part of a very active youth group and at twentyfour, after leaving the church, decided to return with her family. When she arrived, all the younger people she remembered were gone. She told me it just wasn’t a place she was excited about bringing her kids. We are quickly becoming that church with very few young congregants. We need to change. Albert Einstein also said, “the definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results.” Yes, we need to change. I pray that if you’re donating $20,000 to the organ renovation to help with our present day needs that you are also donating $20,000 to the Youth Staffing to help with our future needs. If you want to see more young families in the pews, we need to make a commitment to go forward. A commitment to meet not just our current needs but our future needs.

Please reserve Sunday, December 3, from 11.30-2:00 p.m. on your calendar!!! Be prepared to eat! You are cordially invited - ok, maybe we're just saying you HAVE TO COME - to our Foodie Event. This is an opportunity to smell and taste some of the best food in all the world made by many of you. Part of the featured events for that afternoon is a St. John’s Cookbook Potluck, featuring recipes from the cookbook made by the chefs. If you don't have a world-famous recipe, or lost it, or it died a tragic death in a bizarre cooking incident, we invite you to come and share some tasty food with us. For each prepared delicacy you taste, you will be asked to donate $.01 to $1,000,000 to the Youth Staffing Project. The chef with the most donations wins. We will also have the new St. John’s Cookbooks available for sale and several silent auction items. (Please consider donating a basket for this silent auction. These baskets make great Christmas presents!)

WE NEED YOUR RECIPES NOW! WE NEED YOUR RECIPES NOW! WE NEED YOUR RECIPES NOW! Did you get it? We need your recipes now. Drop off your recipes at the office or post them through the link on St. John’s Facebook.

-Pastor Tom

Praying Through Your Tears

A friend once gave me a book to read entitled Praying All Ways. She specifically wanted me to read the chapter called Praying Through Your Tears because I cry very easily and it makes me crazy. I always felt like a big wimp when I cried, but the words in that book made me realize that crying is a form of praying. When you cry, you are bearing your soul and admitting to God that you cannot handle the situation on your own and you need God’s comforting care.

Tears are not a sign of weakness, but a sign of strength. Our tears testify to our love. And loving calls for great courage, for in loving we always risk getting hurt. We cry - both men and women - because we’ve lost someone or something precious to us. But the tears that spring from our love can help us find healing and renewal. And with healing comes new courage.

Go ahead and cry. It makes no difference if we are crying because we are angry, afraid, guilty, helpless, worn out, or generally depressed. The good news is that crying can remove chemicals that build up in our bodies during emotional stress. According to an article in Psychology Today, the amount of manganese stored in the body affects our moods. The lacrimal gland stores 30 times as much manganese as the blood, so when we cry we really are releasing stored up stress.

Let your tears wash clean the glasses through which you look at life. Tears have a way of putting life in perspective. They help you put your loss in a special place. You don’t forget, but tears help you to live and laugh again. Sometimes we are embarrassed to let our friends see us cry, but the tears of others mingled with our own provide a blessed relief and comfort.

The Greek word for “comfort” means “to come along side to help.” The English word for “comfort” comes from two Latin words meaning “with strength.” God does both. God comes along side and gives us strength. God understands our sorrow. God weeps with us. And God assures us that joy will come. Trust God with your tears.

Pastor Dotty