If I am ever blindsided in pastoral work, it is likely to be
around the subject of marriage.  I can
think of more than a few occasions when I have had a spouse in my office who
has just decided to visit with me because their marriage is on the rocks. I am certain that the signs of trouble were
there for some time, but those signs went unheeded until it was (in many cases)
too late. I believe there are
significant issues going on in marriages today, in many cases just below the
surface. There is disillusionment, pain,
loss, loneliness, guilt, shame, anger and fear. In most of these cases the issues stay behind
closed doors and in the darkness. Unfortunately, that is a recipe for our spiritual adversary to bring
higher levels and degrees of spiritual attack.

Healthy marriages are not simply born, they are made. Yes, they come from the grace of God. They may be centered upon the gospel and our
Lord Jesus Christ. But they take an
intentional investment of time, energy, forgiveness and love. Healthy marriages are the foundation of
healthy families, which are the foundation of positive neighborhoods and
productive communities. Since the
institution of marriage came before even the institution of the church, I
believe the church exists to serve marriages.

We have a unique occasion and opportunity to make a practical investment
in marriage with our “Stronger” marriage conference. This conference will be held on our campus
beginning Friday, September 6 through the weekend. We will host Gene & Carol Selander,
veterans for helping marriages. I
believe it is critical for our whole church to gather around this initiative
with our time, talents and treasures.

Will you please pray, regularly, for the welfare of
marriages and for this conference? Our leaders
are taking Wednesday lunch hour to substitute concerned prayer for lunch. You are welcome to join us in this vital

Will you please consider volunteering in any capacity? John Seevers is coordinating this event, and
there are more than a few moving parts (childcare, meals, administrative
support, miscellaneous). You may email John if you would like to help.

Will you please prayerfully consider inviting a friend,
neighbor, family member?  This is an
event for married people and singles, and anyone may sign up at our website.

Pastor Jeff

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