Greetings on a very Bright and Sunny SoCal Day!
I know that many of you are remembering our brother and sisters in prayer who have been affected from the fires and floods these recent months. Thank you and keep on praying! I’ve been in contact with our pastors and churches where most of these problems have risen. Thankfully, we have ministries in place to assist those who are in great need.
I’m amazed to see the damage one rainstorm can bring. We have leaks here in our District Resource Center and Leslie and I also have a leak in our roof as well. I’m sure you watched the news as cars and trucks were swept away from mudslides and then to see the devastation of mud even moving a house away and burying people alive. As of this writing, there are still people who are missing in Montecito. May these families who have lost loved ones find comfort and rest in the Lord!
ENCOURAGEMENT: “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)
Many of us have read this passage dozens of times… studied it… and have even memorized these words (perhaps, mostly in the KJV) But, I love these words of Jesus. Each one of us can identify with times in our lives when we are worn out and tired to the point of exhaustion.
There are times I can hardly wait to get home just to collapse on my favorite chair with a bowl of ice-cream and milk. That’s right! My favorite thing to do: Get a couple of scoops of Extreme Moose Tracks (that’s chocolate with chocolate chunks and more chocolate) into my cup… then pour milk all over the scoops… sit down and ENJOY!
And when we are to the point of weariness and heavy burdened… Jesus says three words, “Come to Me!” I’ve learned in my journey with the Lord that He doesn’t say, “and I will TAKE AWAY your weariness and burdened soul.” We need to remember that second verse in this passage, “Take My yoke upon you…” When we come to Jesus… He gives us something. And that’s a good thing. Sure, when we come to Jesus He takes away our sin. He removes our guilt… and He makes us clean. But, in this passage He is speaking to those who are following Him. Some may have been following Him for weeks… or months, while others may have only been with Him for a few moments.
When we Come to Jesus in our times of exhaustion… we pick up His yoke, that is, we come alongside of Him and come under His yoke. For when we do… the journey in pain, sorrow, weariness, and struggle is a whole lot easier than by ourselves. As a boy, I remember watching many farmers work the fields with oxen “under the yoke” as they plowed their fields. I noticed how much quicker the work was done with two oxen as compared to only one.
Thank you, Jesus! You are my Savior and my Friend. Thank you for the times when I am weary and wiped out, and I can come to you and you’ll sit down with me and make my journey a whole lot easier. It is then when I find great rest and comfort.
(Photo below was taken by missionary and my Uncle Clyde Golliher many years ago)
DISTRICT MATTERS: We are preparing ourselves for some very busy days today and tomorrow as we hold Board of Ministry interviews for all District Licensed candidates. And this is difficult for some of our members of the Board and licensees who are coming from the northern coastal part of the district with the closure of 101 in Montecito. Please be in prayer for the many who will be on the roads.
- Arise Mission Korean: Once again, Leslie and I were honored to be with our brothers and sisters at the Arise Mission Church. It is always a joy to be with Pastor Jong and Hae Suk Lee, along with their great and encouraging church. They continue to minister to new people joining them who are new arrivals, not just to the city, but to the country. The newest attendee arrived only 2 weeks ago. I thank the Lord for the ministry of this great church. Once again… following every Sunday morning service, and after our meal together, they prepare lunches to take out to the streets to feed the poor. The Lord blesses me each time I’m with them.
- LA First Spanish: From Friday night through Sunday January 19-21, La Primera is hosting a Holiness Campaign. Friday at 7:00PM. Saturday and Sunday at 6:00PM Special evangelist is Rev. Leonel De Leon, Missionary to Mesoamerica. Pastores… hermanos… todos son invitados a la Campaña de Santidad!
- Every January our churches are challenged to receive a special offering for NTS (Nazarene Theological Seminary). Pastors and leaders there is a link to a great and short promotional video you can use in one of your services. http://www.nts.edu/seminarianoffering
- Holiness Summit: Attention all pastors and leaders… you are invited to participate in this great day of teaching provided by the SoCal District. This upcoming February 17th, Riverside Arlington Ave. Church of the Nazarene will be hosting a “Holiness Summit” specifically designed for pastoral staff* in the greater Southern California area, regardless of district. Beginning at 8:30 AM to 2:00 PM, we will hear from General Superintendent Emeritus J.K. Warrick and Dr. Roger Hahn, Professor of New Testament at Nazarene Theological Seminary on preaching holiness and the centrality of holiness in the New Testament, respectively. PLNU’s concert choir will also be joining us, providing times of music and worship. Mark your calendars and plan to be with us for this formative event.
LADTC: LADTC Announces New Testament Gospels (BIB-2033)
January 19 – 20 (Fri.-Sat.)
February 16 – 17 (Fri.-Sat.)
Deadline for registration: Friday, January 5.
Please visit www.LADTC.org for all forms and information. There you will also find our annual academic calendar.
All LADTC courses are required for ordination, and they are all accredited by Nazarene Bible College for B.A. degrees.
Peter Lundell PeterLundell.com
Hello Youth and Children’s Pastors/Directors!
If you’re looking for a weekend of fun and adventure….Please RSVP now to this FREE event for Youth and Children’s Pastors/Directors and Spouses!! Event begins Friday, January 26th at 6:00 pm (dinner will be provided) and ends Saturday, January 27th at noon. There will also be an “Escape Room Adventure” taking place on Friday night. We need RSVPs immediately, so please don’t hesitate!
Pastors – please make sure to pass this email along to your youth pastors and directors!
For questions or more information, contact Kathy Cannon at email@example.com or 818.807.2928
Many blessings on you! I love and pray for you often… I hope to see you soon.
Greg A. Garman
Los Angeles District Superintendent
Church of the Nazarene