Have you ever had a verse or truth come up in a conversation so many times that you just can't ignore it? You wonder why God might have placed this in your path so many times in a concentrated effort to get your attention. While helping someone plan their own celebration of life, their life verse was a reoccurring theme that kept coming up in conversation over the last few weeks. It is a powerful message to anyone who will hear it.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ. But if we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; or if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which is effective in the patient enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer; and our hope for you is firmly grounded, knowing that as you are partners in our sufferings, so also you are in our comfort.
2 Corinthians 2:3-7
God offers us comfort so that we can offer comfort to others. God will often use areas of pain or suffering in a person’s life as a bridge for the gospel. When people are in hardship they will often be more open to the leading of the Lord. Look at the Beatitudes in Matthew 5. How has God comforted you? Has He comforted you as you mourn a loss? Through illness or pain? In a storm or trail? How did He comfort you?
Recognize that when you receive comfort from God that you are now uniquely equipped to offer that same comfort to others. You understand a specific hurt or hardship that will help others through a similar difficulty. It is time to redeem the trails, hurts and grief of the past and to offer out the hope and comfort of Jesus to others.
It has been a long time since we have been able to have a Welcome To Grace Luncheon. We are excited to break bread with those who are new, or somewhat new, to the Church. This is a great time to get to know some of the leadership and ask your questions about the Church. Please join us after the second service in the gym for a casual time of fellowship. See you then!
Candidate for Associate Pastor
Brent, Jessica, Weston, Roxie, Kailynn, and Harlie
“I am God’s servant, a husband, and a father. I am the repairer of broken toys and broken people that God has given me. I enjoy exploring God’s creation through hiking and when I am tired, sit me down in front of almost any Marvel movie.”
Hobbies: I am a DIY guy, and I love working on home projects. I enjoy hiking, kayaking, being outdoors, and dominating hide & seek with my kids. I will rarely turn down an opportunity to play some board games.
Favorite Food: Jalapeño Poppers
Favorite Movie: Why pick one... The entire Marvel Cinematic Universe
Favorite Verse: Psalm 150:6, "Let everything that has breath praise the LORD! Praise the LORD!"
Favorite Quote: "Do I need to be liked? Absolutely not. I like to be liked. I enjoy being liked. I have to be liked. But it's not like this compulsive need like my need to be praised." - Michael Scott (The Office)
Passion: I am passionate to see lives dedicated to serving the Lord and using their spiritual gifts for the building of Christ’s Kingdom.
My testimony and call to ministry
God blessed me to grow up in a Christian home, and I never knew anything different than being heavily involved in serving in the church. I gave my life to the Lord when I was a child. Although outwardly I had little to no change, God radically changed my heart and claimed my soul. I am forever His child, and He is forever my Lord and Savior.
When I was young, my parents were called to the be missionaries in Australia and we spent several years there. While in High School, God changed the direction of my family and brought us to (the middle of nowhere) Lake County. My dad is still the Senior Pastor of Clear Lake Baptist Church in Lakeport.
For a short time, I lived in Lake County and graduated from Upper Lake High School. I vowed to “never come back to Lake County.” While I was attending The Master’s College, I recommitted my life to God and dedicated that I would follow Him wherever He led. He did not call me into full time ministry right away. Instead, my faith and understanding of my Lord began to grow. God blessed my life. He gave me a beautiful wife, wonderful children, a loving church, and steady job pursuing the finance industry to support my family.
During prayer one day, the Holy Spirit began pulling my heart. At first, I tried to ignore it. I felt the Lord tugging at me to step out in faith, prepare for His work, and serve Him in His ministry to build His kingdom. Although I resisted at first, the Lord miraculously through others reminded me of the dedication I had made. It was now time, and He was calling me into ministry.
After I let go of the earthly things I was holding onto, like job security, God did amazing things to direct my path. I prayed for clear opportunity and direction. God then burdened my heart and my wife's heart for this county and softened me to the spiritual needs here. God has given me a desire to show light and hope to the people of Lake County, and I am thankful God brought me back.
I am a work in progress and God is molding me into the image of Christ. He has given me gifts that I need to share with the Body. God is clear what He expects from His servants. 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9 provide the standards of a spiritual leader or pastor. Although I do not always meet God’s perfect standards, I strive to be the leader God expects and I desire to be His servant with my life.
To Him be the praise and glory forever!
What brought you to Grace Church? God has clearly directed my family to Grace. God burdened our hearts for Lake County and moved us here in 2018. I was simply obeying God’s leading. During this time, I was able to connect with Paul Mollett. Both of us shared a passion for our churches and a desire to see God change lives in this community. We began meeting and praying over this county and our churches. In 2020 God prompted me to begin transitioning away from Clear Lake Baptist Church. At first this was confusing. We did not want to go, and we saw so much more work to do. One night my wife and I prayed and requested that we could stay in Lake County and committed that even if God directed us away, we would not hesitate to follow. The next morning, I typed up a transition plan to present to the church but still had no direction in the next step. As I sat praying for direction, low and behold, there was a knock on my office door. I was surprised to see Paul Mollett standing there. He had come specifically to ask me about our future. God is utterly amazing, and He answered our prayer to stay in Lake County. We are so thankful to be a part of this community doing His work.
Are you planning to be at Grace Church for the long term? I have learned that as a servant of God, He dictates my steps. I may make plans for my future, but ultimately God is in control, and I will submit to His call. My prayer, my desire, and my hope are that my family would be established here for the long term. I have a desire to see my children raised up in the Church and trained as servants.
Are you planning to be a Senior Pastor one day? I do not see the Associate Pastor role as a steppingstone to Senior Pastor. I am open to God’s leading and direction in where He needs me. He has called me here and has provided me the gifts to complete the task He has set before me.
How do you see yourself working with Paul Mollett as Senior Pastor? I am blessed to be able to work with Paul. I have willingly submitted myself to his leadership and am excited to share the pastoral duties with him. I believe God has chosen him and is raising him up to lead this flock.
What do you see as your main purpose within the church? We are the church. Beautifully unified together for the purpose of glorifying God and encouraging each other to love and good works. As a shepherd my job is to preach the gospel, baptize, and disciple believers and train them to serve Christ.
Please be praying for all the Volunteers of VBS this week. We know that when you put yourself on the front line, the enemy loves to throw his darts at you. So please pray for good health and an abundance of God's love and grace.
Sending love…and Food to Foster Families
Grace Church Family the opportunity to love and serve some of our local foster families is among us. We are looking to provide at least 40 frozen meals to show our love and support for those who are caring for foster kids. This is a simple but loving way to help those who are helping others. Please consider partnering with us to bless our community. Please read the below message from Hope Forti, Director of Families Together about how you can get involved.
Do you believe every kid needs a community of love and stability? Do you love to cook or give gifts? On Saturday, July 24th, 20 kids in foster care and their foster families will come to the church to receive encouragement tangible support (freezer meals, cookie dough, and summer fun kits). Being in foster care often makes people feel overwhelmed and isolated, and we want to let them know they're not alone!
To sign up to make a meal (or four!) go to tinyurl.com/neighbormeals and choose what you'd like to contribute. If you have questions, please contact Hope Forti (Nowak) at email@example.com. If you know a foster family who would like to receive support, please send them to tinyurl.com/FTmeals
As of Friday July 2nd, the staff and students from Refuge officially made it home safe and sound from summer camp!!
We had such a great time this year at camp and want to thank everyone for all your prayer and support leading up to this event.
In the midst of the business it could have been easy to miss, but we were reminded that throughout the week the Lord was so faithful to provide for any and every need we could have possibly had for camp.
We surely did have fun and play games but most of all God was on display while we learned from the Word Who is God. All glory to Him, that during this week we also had 5 first time decisions to follow the Lord! In addition to the exciting salvations there were also challenging conversations about the Bible, friendships formed by fellowship, discipleship and worship of the Lord who is worthy of all our praise.
As thrilling and fun as it can be to come home from summer camp feeling fresh and encouraged in the Lord, we ask for your continued prayers for those who made professions of faith and salvation, may these commitments be genuine not only during the week of summer camp but for eternity future with Christ. For the students who already have established relationships with God, we ask that you pray for continued encouragement since summer camp feels like an escape from reality and coming back from camp means it’s time to face the real world and whatever pressure each unique student might be facing in everyday life. Please pray for all these students that as they come out of camp with a fervency to follow Christ that they will keep that and live their life each day in a way that brings glory to God. We are so excited to find out how the Lord will use these young members of His body for His purposes and glory!
Rebuilding What is Broken Recap:
It is important that we don’t leave anyone behind. If you are behind please use the tapings of the services and the notes from this posting to get caught up. We don’t want to move forward without you.
Nearly two months ago we started on a journey through the book of Nehemiah. We have found the first two chapters to be very rich in application and understand that with only a week in between challenging ideas, application can be tough. Look at the process we have walked through below and evaluate what you need to do to stay on track with us.
Rebuilding what is Broken-Nehemiah
Week #1-May 16th- Ezra/Nehemiah Overview-
What is broken in your Church? What is broken in you?
Week #2-May 23rd-Nehemiah 1:1-4-A Dislocated Heart
Will you pray for a dislocated heart? What will God dislocate your heart for?
Week #3-May 30th-Nehemiah 1:5-11-Broken Spirit
What do you need to confess? Have you been shooting people with the wrong gun?
Week #4-June 13th-Comeback Sunday-Putting What is Broken in the Hand of the Healer
Sunday Morning Mission Field-Do these 8 things every Sunday!
Week #5-June 27th-Nehemiah 2:1-3-Having a Radical Faith
True faith is under attack, is yours? Is your faith big enough for a God sized ask?
Week #6-July 4th-Nehemiah 2:4-8-A Strategic Plan
How are you doing at praying and planning? Don’t just ask God to do something through you, ask Him for how He will do it.
Church, I know this is a lot to process, but keep pressing forward. It is okay if God has not answered your prayers with great detail yet. Keep asking, keep confessing, keep praying, keep serving. Remember that Nehemiah prayed for nearly 4 months before actually getting to act on what he was praying for. Have the steadfast faith of Nehemiah as you seek with me what God desires from you and for out church.
Being a missionary was never on my radar, but boy am I glad God’s radar is different than mine. I will forever be grateful for the Lord’s calling on my life and the strength in Him to go. This past year I served with an organization called Teach with Cru in Budapest Hungary. I worked as a kindergarten teacher at the International Christian School of Budapest. I worked with a variety of students from missionary kids, to local Hungarian students, to other international business students. Needless to say, the mission field is wide. It was challenging but so rewarding to see the Lord move and work in the lives of each student.
While overseas I experienced some of the hardest moments of my life. Being a first-year teacher in a foreign country was challenging enough; however, our community was faced with sickness, isolation, and even the death of our elementary principal. I say all this not to bring sadness but to speak as highly as I can of the Lord’s mercy, grace, and deep-rooted joy in this last year. He has shown up in every possible way and used each situation to point to Him. I was able to see huge spiritual growth in students of all ages and walks of life and even see the beginnings of a life dedicated to Christ in students. What a true testament to who Christ is.
Next year I will be returning to ICSB to serve another year! I will be home until August and would love to chat with anyone who wants to hear. There is more than enough room for more ministry partners. Thank you for praying for me and caring so well for me this past year both financially and in prayer. I look forward to another year of ministry.
“Do you have the gift of speaking? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Do you have the gift of helping others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen.”
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Oh what a lovely time the ladies had together! Eighty women left the event encouraged, excited about the Lord, and having met many more friends!
We had 6 speakers that shared such great biblical truths!
Carla Hoff: We are chosen.
Jody Dixon: We are adopted.
Katie Mollett: We are weak (and that’s a good thing!).
Kim Bridges: We are slaves to righteousness.
Diana Johnson: We are accepted in the Beloved and are chosen to be God’s ambassador.
Krishelle Bridges: We must look at ourselves and others the way God sees us, which should then mean we treat each other differently. We have been challenged to: greet and listen to each other, use our words to build each other up, and to pray for each other.
What a joy and encouragement! The entire group was so ready for this event, and walked away hungry for more. So what’s the more? How else can we connect with each other, grow closer to the Lord, and spur each other on in the faith? Here are some great places to start:
Women’s Bible Studies: get plugged in to a small group! (you can find current ones here: https://www.gracechurchkelseyville.org/small-groups.html ) We could always use more groups! If you’d like to start one, contact the church office: 279-8448 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Disciple, encourage, counsel women: Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you in this. Is He calling you to be a discipler of a newer Christian? Is He telling you to find an accountability partner? Is He calling you to encourage a woman (or many women) with phone calls or visits? What is He asking you to do next to connect, reach out and grow together? Do that! Be bold!
Women’s Ministry Team: Would you like to join a women’s ministry team? We haven’t yet met, but are gathering up the names of those interested in being a part of something new! If you’d like us to include you, please email Pastor Paul: email@example.com
We look forward to seeing you ladies reach out to each other, grow spiritually, and connect again and again!
Breaking and entering is a topic that typically draws a lot of negative attention. That is not the case for this blog post. My hope is that people who are mature followers of Christ would break and enter. My hope is that seekers would break and enter. Let me explain.
The church can sometimes feel like a fortress. It is filled with people who all seem to know each other and all seem to know the campus. People have their special seats, their own special friends and their own schedule for when and how they will arrive on campus. Many of these people do not include reaching out to people whom they do not recognize in their plans. So much so, people who have been coming to “the fortress” for over a year have still struggled to find their way in the church. My encouragement to these people is to break and enter! Find a way to implant yourselves into the patterns, routines, and friendships in the church. Don’t be quiet about it. I had a couple come up to me one Sunday and tell me that they have been coming for a month and no one had come and had a conversation with them or welcomed them. You better bet I made it my new role to introduce them to everyone in the church that I knew. They had to break and enter to make a home here. My challenge is that as a church we need to make it easier for people to break in by practicing hospitality instead of routine or comfort. Next, if you are new, JUST BREAK IN! Don’t take “no” for an answer. Invite yourself to people's homes, tell their kids a funny (appropriate) joke, attend everything until you find someplace that suits you, serve everywhere. BREAK IN!
For those that already have broken into “the fortress.” You need to break and enter into the community. It was once said that for every year you attend church you lessen your ability to reach those outside of the church by 10%. That means if you have been in church for 10 years you stand almost no chance of reaching anyone outside of the church. You form a Holy Huddle and begin only socializing with other believers. For those that find this to be the case for themselves, break and enter into the community. Over the last five years I have broken into the community by coaching, substitute teaching, helping with counseling at the local schools, playing adult softball, joining the Clearlake Bassmasters, and running the Christian Club on a couple local campuses. This time has forced me to interact with other non-believers and has let my light shine before men so that they may see God. Have you hidden your light under a bushel? Break and enter into the community at large!
-Pastor Paul Mollett