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Hi, I’m Larry Szyman one of the pastors of Faith Community and for twelve weeks now we have putting together these brief videos in response to a virus that has rocked our world. Our building may have been quiet, but the church was not. We were reminded that the church is people and that some of the best ministry that takes place apart from a facility.

Things are starting to change. Restaurants are opening their doors again. Shopping is more accessible. You can go to the local YMCA and get your work out in. Each of these openings is partial in nature. It’s not like the good old days yet, but there are signs of hope.

I’d like to take you on a brief journey to consider your future as the new season unfolds. Could it be better than the pre-COVID era? Why not?

I’d recommend this exercise. Grab a pen and paper...or your phone. Consider how life was before COVID. What was working for you? Write it down. Place a star or otherwise mark those areas that seem vital for your future. What about those things that weren’t working for you? Were you or your family burning the candle at both ends? Were you marked by constant activity, yet no productivity, no vitality? Write those down.

Consider the present. We Americans like our freedom. Stay at home orders and limited recreational and entertainment options do not sit well with us. However, were there new routines that emerged that you found helpful, even life-giving? Eating dinner together as a family. Reading more. Addressing projects in the home and yard. I learned to play the game “Code Names” online with family and friends all over the country. Where the pockets of sunshine in this otherwise cloudy season.? Write them down.

Why do this exercise on the past and the present? In order to shape your future.

In the past few months, we have discovered that there can be times in life when things outside our control can have a major impact on us. But what about those things you can control? Consider how you will shape the new season ahead of you, so that you actually do those things that make you alive to God, your family, and others with whom you share life.

You don’t have to jump back into every activity you participated in before COVID struck. You don’t have to be defined by an out of control calendar or finances. You can decide to live differently. This upcoming season can provide for you the life-changing, family tree-altering opportunity to give yourself to things that enliven you and to set aside those that don’t. You can’t control everything, but what about those areas you can? This could be the difference between surviving and thriving.

Prepare for the future—by looking back, looking around you and looking forward.

Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10.10).

At the center of your life, the center of your family, I encourage you to whole-heartedly embrace Jesus, the center that holds---no matter what. At Faith Community, we want everyone to meet, know and follow Him.

I hope these times together have served you well. We’re going to take a few weeks off to prepare content and approaches that will serve you even better as together, we seek to live dynamically for Jesus in this unique position we find ourselves. So we will see you in July for our next offering of FAITH & Life.

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