Bible Verse of the Day

Philippians 1:29
“For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him,”

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AYP November 2015

Grace, mercy and peace from Christ our Lord be with you all. Amen.

As I write this I am preparing for my trip to Fort Jackson, Columbia South Carolina. And I am dreading this trip. For multiple reasons.

  1. I don’t want to be away from my family for the two weeks.
  2. I don’t like Ft. Jackson. It is a Basic Training facility, which means that everything and everyone is su-per Hooah, which means go-go, rah-rah yea Army... which can get a little annoying.
  3. I have to take a physical fitness test, which consists of push-ups, sit-ups and a 2 mile run. In fact you may have noticed R. Lee Ermy's voice coming from my office reminding me to do my push-ups every two hours, in order to be able to pass my test. I should have no problem with the run, but the push-ups are a different story. I don’t like push-ups, especially the way that they want you to do them down there!
  4. It will be quite a bit of work while I am down there, meaning long days, long nights, and little rest.
  5. On top of all of that it will mean that I am away from you all. I really enjoy what I do here at St. John's and I will miss being here.

But what will my going to Ft. Jackson mean for me? It will mean that I am eligible for promotion. I am proud of what I do for the Army, and in order for me to continue to do this, I have to do certain things that I don’t enjoy. It will also mean that there will be a lot that I will learn, things that I am able to use here for you, to help you all as well. One nice thing about the Army is that they usually are very good at teaching management, and helping those in their respective fields get some of the latest education and training. I happen to be one of the lucky few, that does the same thing in the Army that I do in the Civilian world—be a Pastor.

All of that aside, it got me thinking about why I am not looking forward to this trip, and it is because I am comfort-able where I am and in what I am doing. Not that this is a bad thing, but it means that I am not fully embracing what the Lord has for me. It means that I will be tested, not just physically by the number of push-ups I can do, but mentally and spiritually. It means that I will have to put my money where my mouth is, so to speak.... and trust in the Lord, a leap of faith so to speak. I will need to trust that I have left things in good hands with the Church Council, as well as the Supply Pastor that I have asked to cover things for me in my absence. It means that I will have to trust my family and friends to take care of things at home for me in my absence. It means just that....I need to trust that all will be okay. And trusting is sometimes hard to do. I routinely do it...but that doesn't mean that I enjoy it.

Isn't that the same with the way that we approach our faith? We know about our faith, we practice our faith, but when it comes to it, how often do we trust in our faith? I routinely see it as I speak to people about going to church. They will say that they have their faith, that they don’t practice their faith by going to church, and then they say that the church will fall down if they were to walk into a church. This is not trusting in their faith. I am trying to think of ways that we can engage all people around their faith, and encourage them to become more active in their faith. I still think that one of the key things for us to engage around will be community, not only the community within the church, but the community that surrounds the church. I would like you to share some of your ideas as to how we can engage, and participate with the Gibraltar community around various activities that we can either host, or participate in. If you think of something, no matter how off the wall it may seem, share it, or send me an email at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Together let us pray for each other, that we can all get through the things we don’t want to do, and that we can all learn from the experiences that we face. I know that I will appreciate your prayers as I face the tests and trials that I have ahead of me.

Pastor Paul D. Hansen

Last Updated on Wednesday, 06 January 2016 16:31