Ministry Updates for Wednesday, September 9th, 2020


Do you have surplus produce from your garden and would like to donate it to CAMP?  If so, please call or text Donna Thie (865 243 9740) by 5:00 today to arrange to have your produce picked up.  Pick-ups will occur between 5 -7 tonight.  Please leave produce on the porch for contactless pickup.  Our local food pantry and community appreciate your donations.  

 Scripture – Ephesians 2:8-9

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God— not the result of works, so that no one may boast.

 Reflection – Grace and Faith

This is a verse worthy of committing to memory. I have, and it is always helpful when I get confused about God’s expectations of me.

 Grace – that is what God does. Grace is a gift, not something we earn. Do we have to be ‘good’ for God to give us grace? Well, while it is preferable that we love God and our neighbor as ourselves, grace is not payment, so no, we do not have to be good to receive God’s grace.

 I want you to think about that. God, like a good parent, wants his children to be at their best as often as possible, but if we falter, fall, get lost or even out and out sin, God is there to give us this gift of grace. Grace makes up the difference between where we will surely perish, and where we will find new life – eternal life.

 If you can imagine yourself, even for a moment, having that kind of trust in God, then you have faith. I believe God gives everyone faith, but only some choose to use it. One person, in a bad spot that seems hopeless may sink into despair. The next person, in an identical spot, may have faith God is working things out.

 Grace comes from God. Faith is ours to use, or not use.

 God is working things out for us, regardless of whether or not we ‘deserve it’ or not. This is the message of the cross. It defies our understanding of goodness, justice, and fairness. It is good news to those who are perishing under the weight of sin. It is good news to any who choose to use their faith daily to believe God is gifting us far more than we deserve. It is the Good News of Jesus Christ.

 Is this the end of the story? Not quite. We will say a little more tomorrow about God’s desire for our response to this grace.


Good and generous God, we thank you for the promise of your Grace. We thank you for the gift of faith. May we believe that no matter what we have done, you want to give us a second chance. May we live with the faith that when we stumble, fall or sin, whether by our own fault or by the actions of others, that you will restore us, as many times as it takes. Amen.