First Church Family:
Fall is in the air. Over the summer, we re-examined Wesleyan Methodist theology and its focus on grace: the undeserved, unmerited love of Almighty God.
We remembered Wesley’s focus on God’s prevenient grace, which goes before us, softening our hearts to God and preparing the way for us.
Then, we were reminded of God’s justifying grace, in which God saves (or justifies) us through the life, sacrificial death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Thirdly, we were reminded of God’s sanctifying grace, in which God leads us to maturity as we move toward Christian perfection.
And then, we were instructed in what Wesley called the means of grace: ways that God meets us and offers to be in relationship with us. Means of grace are outward signs, words, actions and other ordinary channels by which God regularly gives us the grace we need.
Wesley divided means of grace into (1) Acts of Piety, which included:
· reading and meditating on the Scriptures
· attending worship
· sharing faith with others
· receiving the sacraments, and
· being accountable to one another for spiritual growth.
And (2) Acts of Mercy, which included:
· doing good works
· visiting the sick and lonely
· feeding the poor
· giving generously to meet others’ needs, and
· seeking justice, and addressing the needs of the poor.
Please join me in keeping that list before you as you move forward living out your faith. It’s an honor to serve with you.