This was the sign we made for the Pine Street Parsonage in Fremont, Michigan. I believe the graphic was made by my brother, Kevin, for our original web-site. Larry Barber created the sign for us. I still have it in my study where it reminds me to pray for the good folk at First Baptist Church in Fremont and remember the kindness of the people, the good had of God and the memories of Fremont we will always treasure. Hope America was born in Fremont at the Gerber Hospital.
While I was pastoring in Fremont I wrote the people a little column one November. It is interesting now to read. Thought I would share it with you.
In this little column we hope to keep you informed about what’s happening around the Pine Street Parsonage. We also always want to include some encouraging words here, too. Next month in our Christmas letter we’ll let you know what the family is up to.
Things are quiet around the parsonage these days. We’re enjoying the mellow transition from autumn to winter. We snatch an occasional evening with a fire on the hearth, soup on the stove, quiet music on the radio, and good conversation or reading, with Anne (the parsonage kitty) dozing at our feet.
It’s Thanksgiving time, a good time to realize how little it takes to be truly happy. It’s a time to foster simplicity and contentment. I like this definition of contentment: “Realizing God has already given us everything we need for our present happiness.” You don’t have to acquire more to have everything you want, you can simply choose to want less. Ben Franklin said: “Contentment makes poor men rich; discontent makes rich men poor.”
Most of us have more than we realize. Have you ever noticed how difficult it is to get through the house or garage without tripping over material blessings. Our most pressing need is for storage. In many parts of the world parents worry about where to get food for their children. We try out new diet plans. Christmas time is coming. Have you ever noticed how hard it is to find gifts for people who already have everything they need?
In a few days we will gather around the big table and enjoy a Thanksgiving feast. We’ll turn our table into a place of worship. Our hearts will be filled with gratitude. We’ll join hands and bow our heads in deep humility and thankfulness. As we have so many times before, we will shed tears of joyful gratitude. We have seven precious children and another due in April. We have our needs met and many wants. We have a warm beautiful home in which to live and we are blessed with good health. We have fulfilling work that occupies our lives and we have many dear friends. Above all we have experienced the bountiful grace and daily mercy of God in our lives. Because of that we know that no matter what is taken from us, the foundational source of our gratitude is something we can never loose.
“For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39 NKJV)
A blessed Thanksgiving to each of you from the Pine Street Parsonage.
Pastor Kenneth L. Pierpont and Family.