Greg’s Few Thoughts – Thursday, September 24, 2015

Good Morning!

I am finally back in the saddle having been away for a couple of weeks.  My word!  It’s been quite the ride.  It all started back on Saturday, September 5 when Leslie and I flew out to Chicago for a few meetings along with the wonderful group of Southwest DS’s and their wives.  We spent some moments in worship, meetings, and even went to a Cub’s game.  That was a treat!  Of course, you all know my love for running… so on the day we arrived in Chicago, and knowing I had a few hours before our first meeting, I just had to go for a long run.  Once we were checked into the hotel… I took off for Lake Michigan.  The lake is HUGE.  And remember, this is now Saturday (of Labor Day Weekend).  There were people everywhere.  EVERYWHERE.  Disneyland must have been vacant on this day because EVERYONE on America was visiting Chicago.

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I was weaving my sweaty body through countless crowds… people were walking… stopping… visiting… as I kept trying to find the opening along the way to get to the lake where I had open trails to run on.  I’ve now gone about 2 miles when I hear someone shout, “Pastor Greg!”

My immediate response was, “What?  You’ve got to be kidding me!  Someone spotted me (of course, I was the only person running) among the millions on the street.  It was Michael, a member of NewNaz, and his young bride out on a walk.  Of course, I had to stop my watch and visit with them for just a second.

We then took the train to Milwaukee for meetings with the entire team of superintendents and wives from USA and Canada.  What a privilege it was to meet this great group and be part of a wonderful team!

CAMARILLOLeslie and I returned home for a couple of days, and I had the privilege of installing Pastor James O’Connell as pastor of our CamNaz Church.  He and his wife, Lindsey, along with their 3 children: Ryan, Annie and Lacey join us now all the way from Idaho… We welcome you to the Los Angeles District Family.  Please be in prayer for this wonderful family as they begin their ministry in Camarillo.

Leslie and I then made another flight to Lenexa where we spent a few days at the GMC (Global Ministry Center) along with 6 other newly elected District Superintendents and wives.  We met with some great leaders going over all sorts of material one could expect to see in district ministries.  All meetings were incredibly helpful.  I have come away with an even greater appreciation for our church.  I’m so glad to belong to the Church of the Nazarene.

 PASTORS AND SPOUSES’ RETREATThese past few days nearly 85 of us gathered in Pismo Beach at the Seacrest Hotel for a time of relaxation, teaching, and encouragement.  Dr. David Busic was our special speaker and we all enjoyed a terrific time together.  A special thanks to the committee for their many hours of planning and preparing:  Pastors Josh Johnson, James Kinzler, Wes Thompson and Doug Pittam were key leaders in gathering us together.  I would also like to thank Pastor Kevin and Heather Ross for leading worship each session.  A special time…

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CHURCHESI am happy to share with you that we have filled one of the churches on this district with a new pastor… as I have already written.  Today, we still have five vacancies and I appreciate your prayers for these fine churches as they continue their search:  Hillside Community in Rowland Heights, La Puente, Los Angeles First, Newhall, and Pasadena First. 

ENCOURAGEMENTA cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.  (Proverbs 17:2)  I love this verse.  So… go ahead and smile more… encourage… bless someone today with a word of encouragement. 

I love you and I look forward to seeing you down the road. 

Greg Garman
Los Angeles District Superintendent
Church of the Nazarene