Dear Central Oaks (part 3)

Good midweek to you from my office here at 2005 Rochester Rd. You, church family, are dearly loved by me and especially by the Lord. He is working in and through you to do amazing things.

It was encouraging to have more continuing to come worship the Lord together on Sunday, as well as many of you who have been coming on Wednesday nights. I noticed several first and second timers. I pray God is working in you and you all are able to find your place among us as the Spirit leads you. I trust all you members and regulars to introduce yourself to them and get to know them as you have opportunity.

Reflections on the Week

Our Growth Group on Sunday was very encouraging to me. I assure you I brought very little to the group as I was near a breakdown the whole morning. My wife and Gary Faust can attest to that. But hearing and observing our group wrestle with God’s Word together did my heart good. And this Saturday, we’ve got an outing together. Other groups I know operate a little differently as each have their own flavor. That’s all good. As our society becomes more “normal,” I encourage you groups to get together once a month outside of Sunday’s time in the Word and prayer. Also, you need to find a group if you’re not in one.

Mary Jo Houck and I’m sure others have started hanging home-made hats out by Main Street with an invitation to church in each one. Nearly a dozen or so have been taken so far. Pray for God to bless this creative effort.

We know of a need for some volunteers to help direct traffic at Schalm Elementary School in Clawson. Anyone could help from 8-8:20 and 3-3:20, M-F. It’s okay if you can only help one or two days a week. Principal Sines is having trouble getting parents to not park in certain areas that need to be open for drop off. Just contact me if you’d like to help.

The Roof

Some or many of you are probably aware that the new roof we had installed is showing some trouble spots (which are the same trouble spots we’ve had for many years). Actually it’s not the roof material per say, more like the design. Danny Shields and I have been in frequent contact regarding the leaks. He is in even more frequent contact with Royal Roofing as they continue to determine the causes of these issues. By God’s grace, the extra hours and labor have been covered by Royal Roofing so far. Their implication is that we will incur no cost as they continue to troubleshoot.

I spoke with a co-owner of the company today as he and our project manager were assessing the situation. They have identified some problems in the design of the roof that especially show up in winter, are developing a game plan, and will present that to Danny and the Trustees soon. In my interaction with them (which is increasing!), Royal Roofing is working very diligently to not just patch the issue, but determine the cause and remedy it.

If you’ve been around here for more than a few years, you know this is not a new issue. Honestly, I have been fighting cynicism this week about the roof myself. However, it is encouraging for me to see much diligence from this company. I’m hopeful they will be able to find a solution, am intrigued by their out-of-the-box thinking, and continue to pray for God to give them wisdom. Please, join me in putting off the knee-jerk “ughs” we may feel and let the Spirt turn them into faith, hope, and love. God is going to use this for good.

Also, remember your main job toward the trustees in our church is not to inform them of maintenance issues, but help them follow Jesus.

The Thing About the Roof

Issues like a leaky roof are not spiritual issues in and of themselves, but God is sovereign over them and is doing spiritual things through them. Remember, God’s goal for us is not to make our lives care-free, but joy-full as He transforms us with the trials into God-enjoying little Christs. Seeing God’s purposes as they are enables us to rejoice in a leaky roof (while still seeking solutions).

How amazing is it that the frustrating situations in our lives that never seem to go away are God’s means of proving His grace is sufficient! Paul asked God to make the thorn in his flesh go away, but he did not allow the thorn to keep God from doing what He wanted in Paul’s life. As we continue to ask God to help this company repair these issues, we need to also ask God to do in us what He wants through the issues. Perhaps one of the reasons the roof still leaks is we haven’t yet learned what God wants us to learn.

As a change of pace, happy birthday today to Dennis Witt. I know Dennis as a faithful man who enjoys doing acts of kindness for unexpecting people. Also I think he sounds a little like John Wayne. 🙂 It was John Wayne who said “Courage is being scared to death . . . and saddling up anyway.” Dennis, I don’t know if you’ve ever been scared to death, but you keep saddling up. I admire you for that and am thankful for you.

The series about forgiveness I’m preaching is about to take a turn toward our need to forgive one another. I’m anticipating the enemy attacking us, but also in the Spirit giving many of us freedom from some things we’ve perhaps held onto for too long. Pray with me about that.

Tomorrow evening I’ll be teaching Colossians 3:12 if God wills it. I hope to see many of you there in person or online.

May God’s grace guide us the rest of this day and week as we seek to pull one another toward godliness and snatch some from the fire.

I pray for you all nearly every day by name,

Pastor Jacob