Kendall Cares Clinic Update

KendallCares_Normal_01The clinic, held at Plano High School on Saturday, April 18, was a huge success! We served upwards of 230 guests that came that day for services. They received medical, dental, vision, hearing and hair care services, along with taking home clothing, books, food and other miscellaneous items. They were able to speak with different community groups, prayer teams and lawyers and have their picture taken. We also served them a warm meal complements of the Kendall County Food Pantry.

Many thanks to the volunteers that came out to help that day. Without them, the clinic would not be possible!

Michelle Olson and Patti Smykal
Kendall Cares Clinic Coordinators

For I was hungry and you gave Me food, I was thirsty and you gave Me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed Me, I was naked and you clothed Me, I was sick and you visited Me, I was in prison and you came to Me.’ Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? And when did we see You a stranger and welcome You, or naked and clothe You? And when did we see You sick or in prison and visit You?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these My brothers, you did it to Me.’

Matthew 25:35-40 ESV

Light and Dark

candleSome research indicates that the human eye can detect a single candle flame from as far away as 30 miles! Of course, this would require some pretty special conditions. Most importantly, it must be dark enough to notice the difference a small flame makes. I have a fantastic Maglite flashlight that glows over 600 lumens (about 50 candles), but when the sun is up, I can’t tell when I have it on! When it is dark outside, you can really tell the difference.

This week in 1 John we are going to explore one of the author’s favorite contrasts about God/faith and unbelief: light and dark. God is Light and evil is darkness. Most analogies about God tend to break down when you explore them in too much detail because God is not like anything our mind can comprehend. Light and dark are not like other analogies though. It is such a powerful and accurate analogy; it works when explored from many levels and perspectives before it breaks down. For example, light is measurable and present. Darkness is not measurable; it is simply the absence of light. Darkness has no power over light, but when light is absent, darkness seems very powerful, even controls us.

Light can seem less meaningful when there is a lot of it around, like my flashlight in the daytime. When we are living our faith in a “Christian environment,” it can feel very normal and can lack excitement or even seem unnecessary. We may be tempted to turn it off to save power for a later time, but turning off our faith because others have it is when darkness sets in. We can also be tempted to try to be the brightest light in order to feel more important, maybe even discouraging others from shining their light. After all, more darkness makes our light seem all that much brighter!

The truth is, the smallest flame makes a difference, and it makes a difference for the person it is closest to. God gives faith to each person, and each person’s faith makes a difference to those closest to them. If our light isn’t shining, it may seem imperceptible at first, but the darkness that is left by the absence of our light will be filled with something. And our small efforts can and do make a difference, even farther away than we could ever imagine. If a single candle can make a difference 30 miles away, your faith, through God, can change the world.

His servant and yours,
Pastor Erik Gauss

Two Worlds Collide

2 worlds collide fbHave you ever attended a funeral home and approached the casket confidently expecting it to be empty? Expecting the person lying in the metal box to talk back to you? Maybe you have tried to imagine what it might be like if the person sat up and was alive once again! What would your reaction be? Would you be more excited that the one you love is alive (and presumably healthy), or would you go into a state of shock?

When a dead man comes back to life, it is cause for pause. It demands us to reconsider and reevaluate everything! Death is one of the few things in life we can count on, so if it is not reliable, what do we honestly know? Consider those who have had a “near death” experience; their outlook on life can change dramatically. Easter is a day where the unthinkable becomes plausible, and if we stop to consider it, our mind can become mush.

After Easter we will walk through the book of 1 John. The theme of Two Worlds Collide is inspired by the reality that was thrust upon us at Easter. There is the physical world where death is a certainty, but there is also the spiritual world where death has no power. What does this mean for us, by the power and grace of God, to live in both worlds? Which one wins? When? How?

John has a very unique writing style; in fact, it is so unique that many don’t consider it a writing style at all but rather, a preaching style. He frequently and repetitively utilizes powerful contrasting images and concepts: light and darkness, sin and cleansing, love and hate, flesh and spirit, beginning and end. The use of this language does not mean John sees no middle ground; in fact, his overarching message is to help people find solid ground in such a polarized world. The frequency and clarity of these contrasting images allow the listener to retain more content while at the same time create a way for the message to be easily memorized and shared with others!

Beginning April 11-12, we will explore the author who brought us the book of Revelation, 1, 2 and 3 John as well as the Gospel of John. Together, along with him, we will wrestle with what it means to live in a world, two worlds, where nothing is as it seems. Where everything has another purpose, where faith and life collide, we can still find truth. “We know that we are from God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one and we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.” John 5:19-20

His servant and yours, Pastor Erik Gauss