Dear Church Family:

Thank you for your wonderful words
and mark of appreciation at the
occasion of clergy recognition
month; I feel so grateful and overwhelmed!
You are an amazing
church family, and I am so blessed
to have been called to love and serve
you as your pastor. And thanks to
those who filled out and returned the yellow
“get acquainted” survey sheets.

I also am grateful to Dr. Winifredo Paez for filling the
pulpit today as I will be on my way back from a short
health sabbatical that was planned since May,
delayed in July and September, due by year’s
end, but that I was only able to attend now.
He told me his subject is “Healthy Choices.”

Health is such an important but sometimes
overlooked commodity in our lives. So, the
hiding of health often comes as a surprise.

Like the surprise I felt Sabbath October 3 when I
had to be taken to UMC, and later in the week to
undertake gallbladder surgery. I am grateful for
the compassionate and expert care received.

Also, like last November’s surprise when lab results
indicated my sugar levels were high. Through five
months of paying attention to diet and exercise, I was
able to by God’s help lose 40 lbs. and reestablish
correct levels. It was at that time that I planned on
the next step health sabbatical which I attended the
past few days. Beside personal health benefits,
I hope to use the acquired material in ministry
for the benefit of others.

God’s encouragement and goals for us are salvation,
healing, wellbeing, and health: “Trust in the Lord
with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own
understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge
him, and he shall direct thy paths. 7 Be not
wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord
and depart from evil. 8It shall be health
to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones”
(Proverbs 3: 5-8)

Happy to be involved at our Lubbock Junior
Academy, I have accepted the invitation to give the
Fall Week of Spiritual Emphasis the third week of
November. Following Dr. Paez’s subject today and
guided by our head teacher, the week’s goal will
be to help LJA students renew a commitment
towards spiritual, mental, and physical
health all the way up to heaven.

My wish for all of us young and old is:
“Beloved, I pray that you may be in good health”
(3 John 2)

With love, Pastor Sam