In the beginning...(Gen. 1:1)


January is full of beginnings. A new year brings new opportunities and a fresh excitement of what could be. Perhaps the luster of new Christmas presents hasn’t dulled just yet and new year's resolutions remain intact. We continue to celebrate the greatest gift of all, a Savior born for you, born for me, and born for all.

The faith family of St. James Lutheran, having had a rich 150 year history in which God’s grace and giving has been an abundant blessing to so many for so long, is about to embark on a ‘new beginning’. Just think of all the amazing and glorious things God has done for so many people over all those years. As we look to the future and continue to celebrate the past we have every reason to - give thanks to the Lord for He is good, His mercy endures forever!

In the life of our church we are about to embark on a new beginning. Pastor Brooks has faithfully, skillfully, and lovingly cared for you for so many years. What a blessing! For some of you he may have been the only pastor you have ever had. He as walked with you through beginnings and endings, joys and sorrows, highs and lows, peace and turmoil. Through it all he has faithfully pointed you to the One who is always faithful. Oh, give thanks to the Lord for He is good, His mercy endures forever!

In the beginning, God created… but now what? What are we to do? Where are we to go? What is next? How are we going to get there? I know, lots of questions, I have them too. I can assure you of two things in this ‘new beginning’. One, I am not Pastor Brooks, I was not made to be nor is the one God is bringing to you to be your next pastor. What you need to know is that each of us, serve the same Lord and teach faithfully the truth of God’s Word. A Pastor’s ministry does begin and end but Christ and His bride, the Church, have and will remain. Oh, give thanks to the Lord for He is good, His mercy endures forever.

Second, God is not done creating and recreating each of us and all of us together. As a believer, I want to “Grow and Go!” I want to grow as a child of God through His all-powerful, creating WORD. I also want to go and tell the Good News by which all things (including you and me) were created and continue to be recreated by His grace. Does that sound like a tall order, too big to be done? Not for our GOD! Oh, give thanks to the Lord for He is good, His mercy endures forever.

I look forward to a new beginning with all of you, walking together, witnessing the next part of God’s forever mercy unfold in and through all of us.

Peace and Joy in Christ,
  Pastor Mark Gilson