29 MAR 2017
This Week at Grace

We Are Fools for the Sake of Christ
Just a head's up, this Saturday is April Fool's Day! If you have any pranksters in your life, know that they may tape down the water sprayer handle on your kitchen sink, or give you a glass that dribbles water. In honor of this unofficial holiday, I thought this week I would share with you words from the writer and theologian, Fredrick Buechner, on fools. This excerpt comes from a larger compilation of writings that form the book Beyond Words: Daily Readings in the ABC's of Faith.

Worldly wisdom is what more or less all of us have been living by since the Stone Age. It is best exemplified by such homely utterances as "You've got your own life to lead," "Business is business," "Charity begins at home," "Don't get involved," "God helps those who help themselves," "Safety first," and so forth.

Although this wisdom can lead on occasion to ruthlessness and indifference, it is by no means incompatible with niceness, as the life of anyone apt to read (or write) a book like this bears witness. We can be basically interested in nothing so much as old number one and still give generously to the American Cancer Society, be on the Board of Deacons, run for town office, and have a soft spot in our hearts for children and animals. It is in contrast to all this that what Saint Paul calls "the foolishness of God" looks so foolish. Inspection stickers used to have printed on the back "Drive carefully the life you save may be your own." That is worldly wisdom in a nutshell.

What God says, on the other hand, is "The life you save is the life you lose." In other words, the life you clutch, hoard, guard, and play safe with is in the end a life worth little to anybody, including yourself, and only a life given away for love's sake is a life worth living. To bring this point home, God shows us a man who gave his life away to the extent of dying a national disgrace without a penny in the bank or a friend to his name. In terms of human wisdom, he was a perfect fool. And if you think you can follow him without making something like the same kind of a fool of yourself, you are laboring under not a cross, but a delusion.

There are two kinds of fools in the world: damned fools and what Saint Paul calls "fools for Christ's sake" (1 Corinthians 4:10).

Peace,


Pastor Stacey


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The Vision at Grace
To  feed  our surrounding community, spiritually and physically, while  reaching  outward with God's love and intentionally  welcoming  all in the name of Christ.


Calendar

Sunday, April 2
Young Adult Brunch, immediately following worship, Ponce City Market

Friday, April 7
"If There Be Any Sorrow: A Concert of Choral Music," 6:45pm dinner + talk (Fish Fry) | 8pm, concert, Sanctuary

Sunday, April 9
Palm Sunday (Holy Week begins.)  Meet in Grace Cafe at 10:30am to process with palms.

Tuesday, April 11
Needles and Prayers, 7pm

Thursday, April 13
Maundy Thursday, Worship, 7pm, Inman Park UMC (Visit their website for address/directions.)

Friday, April 14
Good Friday, Prayer Stations, drop in from 11am-1pm, New Church Atlanta (Formerly Epworth UMC - Visit their website for address/directions.)

Church office closed in observance of Good Friday holiday.

Sunday, April 16
  • Sunrise Worship, 7am, Historic Fourth Ward Skate Park
  • Children's Egg Hunt and Family Brunch, 9:30am, Grace Front Lawn & Grace Cafe
  • Festival Worship, 11am, Sanctuary
Sunday, April 23
Young Adult Brunch, immediately following worship, Ponce City Market

Church Council Meeting, 12:30pm, Living Room


Ministry Spotlight

IF THERE BE ANY SORROW: A Concert of Choral Music

Friday, April 7
  • 6:45 pm dinner + talk (fish fry)
  • 8pm concert
How do we empathize; how do we mourn? How can we locate our own humanity in others? Join us for an evening of good food, profound conversation, and beautiful music!

We want to be sure to provide enough food, so let us know you're planning to attend by securing your free "tickets" today. Visit http://bit.ly/iftherebeconcert or scan the QR code to register online. Or, fill out the card in Sunday's bulletin and place it in the offering plate.



Also, if you would like to help support this event with a donation in any amount, please contact Michael Dauterman (mdauterman at graceonponce.org).


HOLY WEEK at GRACE

Please see above for our calendar of worship services and events.


Congregational Care

PRAYER REQUESTS
Heartfelt Christian sympathy to Jenny and Stephen Barwick on the death of her uncle, Tom Callery.

Please remember in your prayers all who are experiencing health issues/recovering from them:
  • Marilyn Altman
  • Johnny Chappell
  • Jane Gable
  • Alice Maclin
  • Betty Nash
  • Lydia Sharian
  • Shawn Stephens


Sharing Our Gifts
Give to Grace. Safe, secure, one-time or recurring, tax-deductible giving is available by visiting www.graceonponce.org/donate or by scanning the below QR code.

Your gifts make a difference in the lives of our church and community.

And remember that Grace's financial documents are open and available. Simply email our financial assistant, Nora Harris (nharris@graceonponce.org) with any questions you may have.

Thank you for your faithful support of the work that God is doing through Grace Church!



GRACE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
458 Ponce de Leon Ave. NE
Atlanta, GA 30308
404-876-2678

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