If you were able to join us for Soupfest on Sunday evening, then I’m sure you were encouraged as I was. Of course the food was wonderful. More than that, it was good for the soul to gather in fellowship, and see people enjoying each other’s company. Now more than ever I thank the Lord for those opportunities. We were additionally blessed by the presence of the Owen family. Andy and Carmen shared with us about the work that has been going on in Thailand, specifically through Sandy Fender and the Naomi House, where Thai women are able to learn trade skills that enable them to make a living, and also minister to those in need. Really cool stuff going on – let us know if you want more information about that, check out the links below. One of the additional blessings of having the Owens come was just the chance to interact with those outside of our church. They were able to give me and several others a fresh perspective on CBC. As many of you are well aware, it is easy to be most critical of that with which we are most familiar. We see ourselves in the mirror every day, and we know our flaws and imperfections more than anyone else. The same is true with the church. We see our own church with an intimate and familiar perspective, and it can be easy for any of us to see its imperfections. This is only natural, as no church is perfect. That is why it was so encouraging to have a lifelong missionary visit and take note, repeatedly, of the vibrancy and warmth they saw at CBC. The Owens noted several times that they were struck by our hospitality, inter-generational participation, spirit of unity, and focus on Christ. Take this for what it’s worth, but they noted that they do not see this at every church. Of course we wish it were that way in every church. But the point is that they were not being complimentary just to be polite. They meant it. My spirit was encouraged to hear those things from a fresh perspective, and I hope yours is as well. And I will add that I agree! We have a particularly special church here at CBC, and in this season of Thanksgiving I want to be especially grateful for it. Many thanks to all of you who greeted, served, ministered, brought food, and made preparations for this last Sunday’s festivities. By God’s exorbitant grace, we do have a great church, poised to do some wonderful things. May we continue to seek and serve the Lord together!