Few Thoughts 11-16-2018
Happy Thanksgiving! 

Many of you will be either preparing to head out to be with family somewhere or you will be doing the welcoming in your home next week. Either way, I pray that you will have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving. I’m sure there will be a football game, or two, to watch; and MAYBE, if you are lucky, a 5 or 10K to race in on Thursday morning. As for me, I’ll be heading to Burbank on Thanksgiving morning, very early, to race in their
Annual 5K Turkey Trot. It should be loads of fun. 
A Week in Review: Allow me moment to comment on the outpouring of love, prayers and concerns for the many people across our state who have been victimized by so much strife.  
Pastor James O’Connell, from our Camarillo Church has done an outstanding job in pastoral leadership since the shootings that took place just over a week ago. Thank you, church, for the support and encouragement you have shared with the families in need during this time. Continue to pray for the Coffman and Johnston families during these days.  
Reports from the Woolsey Fire and the Camp Creek Fire keep pouring in. Many of you know that nearly every family who was a part of our Paradise Church of the Nazarene up north lost their homes and everything in them. Please keep the many churches who are working to provide assistance to the many evacuees in your prayers, as well as the families affected.  For more information on how you can help, please click below.
Mrs. Roma Gates, wife, mother, missionary and one of our own, passed away last week on November 10. Her memorial service will be held on Friday, November 16 at 1:00PM in PazNaz. Please lift up Dr. Charles Gates and his son Greg, along with their families, in your prayers.

Truly my soul finds rest in God; my Salvation comes from Him. Truly He is my Rock and my Salvation; He is my Fortress, I will never be shaken… One thing God has spoken, two things I have heard: “Power belongs to You, God, and with You, Lord, is unfailing love”; and “You reward everyone according to what they have done.” 
(Psalm 62:1-2, 11-12) 

Even in the most difficult of times, my desire is to give thanks to the Lord who knows my heart. Just as the psalmist has written, “The Lord is my Rock and He is my Fortress!” Storms crash in on every rock and fortress that exist today. Winds will blow and lightning will strike. Rains will pour down in buckets and floods will arise, but the Rock remains strong and secure. 
Leslie and I lived in Los Osos for nearly 4 years, some 30 years ago. One of our favorite spots to visit was Morro Rock. Today, that Rock looks like it did 30 plus years ago. I’m sure it looks much the same as it did 130 years ago. One of my favorite verses I reflect on often from the Book of Hebrews is “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and yes, forever!”
I recall going out to Morro Rock during the heaviest downpours and crashing waves, just to look and observe. The rock is secure. Immovable. Unshakable. Unstoppable. As I enter this week of Thanksgiving I am reminded of the All-Powerful Rock who cares deeply for you and me. Therefore, my desire is to live for Him. And how I live for Him is by following in His commands He has written in His Holy Word. 
T hank you, Lord for saving my soul. Thank you, Lord, for making me whole. Thank you, Lord for giving to me, Thy great salvation so full and free.   
I’m so glad I a part of the family of God!

Around the District:

Ridgecrest:  What a joy it was to worship and share for just a moment in the Ridgecrest Church this past Sunday as I installed Rev. Ken and Paulie Lewis as their Lead Pastor! This church did an outstanding job honoring our Veterans who have served our country so well over the years. Thank you, RCN! We love you and I believe that great days are awaiting you as the Lewis' join the wonderful team of leaders you already have in place there in Ridgecrest.
Acción de Gracias:   Last Saturday many of our Spanish speaking churches and congregations came together in Newhall for a special time of thanks and sharing around the table. Thank you, Pastor Vicente Cadenas, for leading this special day, along with your committee. Thank you, ladies, for your work in food preparation. Thank you, Pastor Lamar Davis, for bringing us the Word. And thank you, churches for your participation. We had well over 250 people present for this special day!   
Casa Robles : This last Monday night I was invited to join the Casa Robles Group of Retired Missionaries for their annual Thanksgiving gathering at Mimi’s Café. I love this group of men and women, as I know you do as well. Please keep this wonderful group of prayer warriors in your prayers. You do know, they pray for you often… daily! As you take a look at this photo, you will also see a few special guests.  
Leslie and I were asked several months back to be the special speakers at the two Graduation Ceremonies in Peru for our Seminary. Of course, since they are in the southern hemisphere, summer time is approaching quickly, which means the end of the school year is near. Thus, graduations take place towards the end of November and early December. We have two campuses in Peru, so we’ll be heading down to Peru on Monday, November 26 for a very quick trip. Leslie will return on Saturday, December 1, while I head into the jungle for the second ceremony, and I will arrive back a few hours before our District Christmas Dinner on December 3. While we are away, Leslie and Aubree have two concerts they will share music in, and I’ll be preaching. (That’s right, Aubree, has a free flight down there, so we’re happy to have her along) We do covet your prayers. 
And… speaking of the Christmas Dinner, we look forward to seeing you in Temple City on December 3. The district does have a special gift for every lead and congregational pastor, as well as Leslie and I have a small gift to present to you too. Of course, something from Peru to go along with your Christmas decorations. 
We love you and count it a privilege to serve the Lord alongside of you. May Jesus be praised and thanked by us all during these days. See you soon!
So Blessed,
Greg A. Garman
Los Angeles District Superintendent
Church of the Nazarene