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Dear Church,

My backyard tree is blushing and dropping scarlet leaves everywhere, which means it’s November. I love November. Not especially for its weather which is typically dreary and gray, but for the emphasis on gratitude. So I want to start out November saying this: I am so grateful for you.

Familiarity breeds apathy. We’re all like butterflies, fitting around forgetting what beautiful patterns we wear on our wings because we can’t see them ourselves.  Gratitude gives us fresh eyes, and today I want to lend you my sight to see your own beauty.

You, dear church, are a live coal.  Never underestimate the power, potential, and warmth of a live coal. You aren’t perfect, and maybe you’re not where you want to be, but you are alive.  Your core is hot, your heart is for your community, and your love for each other is evident and active. The Holy Spirit dwells within your midst. Like the wind, the Spirit blows where it will and some days are blustery and some days are calm, but I see the movement.

So many churches are consumed with a desire to grow rapidly in numbers.  Yes, let us multiply!  But as we look to increase our numbers,  may November remind us to number with gratitude all that we already have.  May we look around with fresh eyes and be thankful for the ones next to us on Sunday mornings.  In pursuit of all you want to be, do not forget to praise God for who you already are.

I’m thankful for you, church. So very thankful to be doing kingdom work with you. You are alive!  Christ is alive and active in your midst. I feel it, I see it, I give thanks for it.

What do we do with a live coal?  We hold it close to our hearts and blow gently to fan the flame.  I believe with all my heart this is how Christ feels about us, His bride. Take courage little flock. Your Father knows your needs; He sees your works; He is pleased.

Galatians 6:9

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.