Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery (JB) was less than a mile from where we used to live in St. Louis. A little trivia: It is the oldest operating military installation west of the Mississippi River.
I always loved how JB would honor the women and men who had served in the military. The first-ever graveside I led there brought tears to my eyes. It was full of reverence, respect, and honor. I left feeling grateful for the thousands of people buried there that I never had the opportunity to meet face-to-face, but shared the common conviction that freedom matters.
This week, I wanted to share a Memorial Day message from one of the greats: Billy Graham.
As you remember the women and men who gave their lives to protect our national freedom, may also remember the One who gave His life for our eternal freedom.
Check out Billy Graham's message here and let me know what you think.
Happy Memorial Day.
Love you all!
I recently asked our ministry team to think about their relationships with friends, family, and their neighbors and describe the brokenness that they see others experiencing right now.
Their responses make me stop and pause because it's where I am, too. Check it out.
Wow. That's heavy stuff. Do you see and feel the same things? I do.
I would love to learn what you and your neighbors are experiencing. Let me know by completing this short survey. Your input will help us, help you love God, love people, and live like Jesus.
*indicates a required question
There is no doubt that my life has changed in the last eight weeks.
Life has indeed, changed.
I’m guessing your life has changed, too.
The truth is that our lifestyles and culture have changed… and they will continue to change.
I want to come alongside you in this online space and walk with you on our shared journey of staying home and staying healthy.
Throughout the month of May (and perhaps longer), I’ll be sharing conversations and resources at oslc.com/stayhealthy that will help us all stay physically, mentally, emotionally, and of course - spiritually healthy.
I’ll post new content each week - usually Wednesdays and Fridays, so check back often.
Love you guys. -pt
Unprecedented times call for unprecedented prayer!
God is the only one who can give hope and healing and he invites us to pray. Eugene Peterson once said, "We want life on our conditions, not on God’s conditions. Praying puts us at risk of getting involved in God’s conditions" (Working the Angles, 1989).
Let us unite in seeking and getting involved in God’s conditions - that we may be empowered as both individuals and as a collective community to bring the love and hope of Jesus to those who need it most.
Our pastors and elders have written a prayer guide that includes scripture, encouragement and short prayer to help guide you in your personal prayer time.
In addition to this prayer guide, let's come together online and be a part of one of these two events on May 7th:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7).
“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
Jesus in John 8:12
I have no doubt that our community isn’t just seeing “Our Savior”, they’re seeing “The Savior”, Jesus, Himself in you… and through you.
Jesus is still writing His story through you – even in this unique time!
Stories inspire me. Currently, Noah’s favorite story is Arnie the Doughnut by Laurie Keller. Arnie’s relationship with Mr. Bing moves from almost being eaten to being friends. I love stories like that.
Do you know what I love even more? Stories that both inspire and motivate me toward a greater purpose. After all, Jesus is alive and we have “the” story of Living Hope to tell.
You see, stories like these invite us to see and experience the living, beating heart of Jesus, today. And did you notice that each of them are stories of people like you and me living a life on mission? For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. (2 Corinthians 5:14-15)
Have you seen or experienced God work in a surprising way? Has Jesus' love motivated you to intentionally choose doing something for somebody else in these challenging times? How have you seen Jesus alive in the world around you? Share your story at go.oslc.com/tellyourstory.
In the meantime, check out this COVID-19 Art of Neighboring Toolkit (PDF from artofneighboring.com) to discover more ways to be the heart of Jesus – His presence and power, right where you are.
Write your story by living out "the" story of your Living Hope, today.
Jesus is very much alive, right where you are. We just need to point Him out.
Check out this video to learn how our ministry team has seen Jesus alive this past month. Toward the end of the video, I also share a brief financial update.
I wonder what you see God doing. Let me know by going to: go.oslc.com/tellyourstory. I can’t wait to hear about it!
May you and your family have a rich and meaningful Holy Week experience and a joy-filled Easter!
I’m so excited to share with you that our elders and pastors have made the decision that beginning this Sunday, we are going to celebrate communion during all of our online services. What a moment it will be to experience the peace, presence, and power of God together in this meal - especially during this time of fear and isolation.
Here’s what I’m asking you to do.
What an incredible experience it will be during a time when we are limited due to time and space to receive the grace of the God who is not bound by time or space through His body and blood. Indeed, Jesus is our hope, yesterday, today, and forever.
The OSLC ministry team is a growing collection of women and men who live as a family on mission, leading the OSLC family in connecting an unchanging God with a changing world by loving God, loving people, and living like Jesus.