Just a reminder: the church will be hosting a come-and-go reception for Mrs. Mary Ruth Johnson in honor of her 37 years of ministry at the Little Prairie Preschool on Sunday, Aug. 9 from 2 to 4 p.m. in the Family Life Center. Please come out and share preschool memories and thank her for all the love and dedication she has poured into the preschool and students for almost four decades! This is not limited to the congregation but is open to anyone in the community, so please help spread the word!

The Myanmar Samaritan Mission is our VBS mission. Cing Root has provided mission updates-through our virtual format. A donation box for MSM and the VBS mission is set up on a table in the foyer. Since there will be no VBS at the church this year, this is a great way to help support one of our missionaries. Virtual VBS started July 20 and go through Aug. 20. Home packets and more information about this is available at the church. 

From pictures I saw, I guess the kids and sponsors had a good time hiking the Garden of the Gods in southern Illinois on Saturday-wow, what a hot day for a hike! I have been there and it is very pretty, but I wouldn’t want to go when the weather is so hot.

Baccalaureate Service is this Saturday, Aug. 1 at 7 p.m. at the fairgrounds. Come worship with our graduates. Aaron McCaleb, our student minister, will be preaching.

A couple weeks ago, it was announced that Mrs. Kelley Fryman will be the new preschool teacher. Just a little more information: Mrs. Kelley has been teaching the twos and threes class for 21 years she knows about little kids!

Once in a while, Mr. Tom will take a picture (with his phone?) and post in on Facebook. This past week, he had two beautiful ones and scriptures to go with each picture. One photo was a sunset with the scripture, “God made two great lights-the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night,” Genesis 1:16. The other photo was of some storm clouds and his scripture for this was, “God’s glory will be a steer and shade from the heat of the day, and a refuge and hiding place from the storm and the rain,” Isaiah 4:6. One of his friends commented that they saw a dog’s face in these clouds.

Mr. Tom’s sermon Sunday was “a Grace that Works,” from 1 Peter 5:5-14. He started by saying we all need to pray for our country and our surrounding counties that we should stay focused on God. He also stated that he (Mr. Tom) was a “dumb kid from central Illinois and if it hadn’t been for God, he would not have graduated from high school and college.” Personally, I do not think he is dumb!

Grace works for the humble: “God resists the proud, but shows favor to the humble,” 1 Peter 5:5. All of us have had to deal with anxiety and temptation-grace is a free gift we receive from God, we need to ask!

Grace works for the steadfast: “be alert, be on watch! Your enemy, the Devil, roams around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour,” 1 Peter 5:8. As he was talking about lions, I could not help but think ECHS Lions. We had many people leading the singing and playing instruments on Sunday who are/going to be graduates of ECHS. Mr. Tom (who loves Twinkies) used an example of, if Satan wants you to eat a Twinkie, could you stop with one, or would you eat the whole box?! Satan wants you and only you-you could have no other relationships. Satan raises our anxiety and doubt, but Jesus helps deal with it-you have to ask! What has been the lowest part of your life? Very good question.

Ms. Danielle is going to double check the needs for the preschool. Next on the docket will be getting items for the Christmas boxes. Again, I say-a good way to use those coupons you get at the dollar store occasionally!

Stay safe, stay healthy.