As I’m sure you can imagine, it’s not often that I’m speechless! Well this past Sunday was definitely one of those moments! The other Pastors on our Staff were all sporting Hawaiian shirts with MY PICTURE all over it (zoom in above)! October evidently is Pastor Appreciation month, and this was their way to “honor” me and have a little (a lot) of fun Coastal style! My jaws were sore from laughing and smiling so much! Everyone had a lot of fun with it! I asked Scott where they got them from. He responded, “Communist China.” And he can’t confirm or deny that my “Name, Image, and Likeness” are now not being used in China to sell various products (think stuffed Koala bears, popsicles, etc.)! I love these guys and I love our church!
In the midst of all of the fun and laughter, I also received a lot of hugs, kind words, and heartfelt notes of encouragement. I can’t thank all of you enough. I am truly a blessed man! However, there is someone behind it all, someone who most people have no idea how much they do, how much they give, and how much they sacrifice – my wonderful, beautiful wife Janet. I would not be the Pastor I am today, without her. Coastal wouldn’t be Coastal without her. Very few people understand the weight and responsibility she carries. And Janet carries it all with grace and love. She is a smart, strong, servant leader. She is my encourager, confidant, counselor, teacher, and proof reader. Every idea, sermon series, step of faith, new initiative, and staff hire was first run past Janet and her wisdom (okay, I do sneak some of my jokes past her approval – haha). At some churches, the Pastor’s wife is called the “First Lady” and treated like royalty – not Janet – she would never want that. Instead, she’s the one on her hands and knees, crawling through the indoor playground cleaning up a “code yellow” on Sunday morning. She’s also the one doing a hundred other things that no one else will ever see or understand, all the while sharing her husband and family with hundreds of people. How does the saying go? “Behind every great man is a great woman.” I definitely don’t consider myself great, but I do know this – Janet is a great woman and a great Pastor’s wife!
Look again at the picture above, but this time make sure you see Lori Huff, Kim Jones, Hannah Bonetti, and Gracie Spell. They are the real unseen heroes of our church. Each one of them has a ministry and a role that no one else can fill. Each one of them serves, gives, and sacrifices in ways that no one else can understand. So, again, thank you for all the love and kind words. Just make sure that when you show any love and appreciation to me and the other Pastor’s here at Coastal, you don’t forget the ones who really deserve it – the Pastor’s wives. I love you Janet, I love being your husband, and I love what we get to do together here at Coastal!
LIFE & LOVE!
- UPCOMING OUTREACH PROJECTS:
Clothing Team: Our Coastal Clothing Team will be organizing and sorting clothes today, Friday, October 7th, 9am-11am. Meet at 2952 Old Pond Road on Johns Island.
Chair Set-Up: Come help set up all the chairs in the auditorium this Saturday (tomorrow), October 8, at 9:00am.
Double Tailgate Day: Charleston Vets & Joseph Floyd Manor: Saturday, October 8th, 10am-1pm. Meet at the church and then pick which Tailgate you’d like to serve.
Soldier’s Angels: We’ll be helping with the Veteran’s Mobile Food Distribution, Tuesday, October 11th, 8am-1pm. Meet at 1113 Sam Rittenburg Blvd. (The Elks Lodge).
Lowcountry Orphan Relief : Lowcountry Orphan Relief provides support services and aid to meet the needs of Lowcountry children identified as at-risk or suffering from abandonment, abuse and/or neglect. Coastal will be serving there, Friday, October 14th, 9:30am-11:30am. Meet at 1850 Truxton Ave in North Charleston.
Family Serve Night: On Friday night, October 14th, at 6pm come and help us pack lunch kits for the Veterans at the Charleston VA Medical Center. This is definitely a kid friendly outreach project.
VA Hospitality Project: This team serves at the VA Hospital in Charleston by providing a hospitality cart, greeting incoming patients and employees, visiting patients, and helping Volunteer Services with small sorting projects. Wednesday, October 19th, 8:30am-12:30pm. Meet at Coastal.
Hope Center Tailgate (Adults Only Project): The Hope Center, managed by the city of Charleston, serves as a one-stop shop in downtown Charleston to assist those who are homeless or who are at-risk of being homeless. We’re sending a Tailgate Team to serve dinner to anyone who is hungry. We meet at Coastal on Thursday, October 20th, 3pm-6pm. Meet at Coastal.
As always, if you are interested in serving in any of these projects, you can sign up on your Connect Card this Sunday or sign up now on our website. If you have any questions, please reach out to Pastor Chris Jones at 843-870-4613.
- One of our favorite missions that we support here at Coastal is Operation Christmas Child (OCC) – sharing the love of Jesus and the Good News of the Gospel through gifts & supplies in a simple shoebox. What we are asking our church (YOU) is to simply pray and ask God how many shoeboxes He wants you to fill, take home the shoeboxes we provide, pack them as a family, and then bring back your completed boxes to the church between now and Sunday, November 13th. Our kiosk in the Welcome Center will be filled with the remaining shoeboxes ready to take home each Sunday (until they’re gone). This would be a GREAT opportunity for you to teach your children about generosity, the true meaning of Christmas, and the love of Jesus. Help us reach our goal of packing over 1000 shoeboxes this year and share the love of Jesus with children all around the world! Pray about how many boxes your family would be willing to pack, step out in faith, grab a few shoeboxes on Sunday, and help us do just that!
- If you’re fairly new to Coastal, a great next step is our Newcomers Reception. Our next Newcomers Reception is Sunday, October 30th, in our Chapel immediately following the 11:15am service (at approximately 12:30pm). This is a great way to learn more about Coastal, meet staff and key volunteers, as well as meet some other new people. You can sign up on our website, or sign up on your Connect Card on Sunday.
- Attention Coastal! Our church is collecting large bags of individually wrapped candy to help with Oakland Elementary School’s Trunk or Treat. Their Trunk or Treat is Thursday, October 20th, 5pm-7pm, and we are collecting candy through Sunday, October 16th. You can drop your candy off at the bin on the kiosk in front of the auditorium.
- PERU MISSIONS TRIP INFORMATION MEETING! Join us in the Chapel immediately after the 11:15am service on Sunday, November 13th for an information meeting about the July 22nd-29th Missions Trip to Peru! RSVP on your Connect Card for lunch and childcare.
P.S. Mark your calendar for our next Coastal Night of Worship – Friday night, November 11th, 7-8:30pm! Invite your friends and family to join us for a night of prayer, worship, and encouragement. RSVP now for childcare (birth-kindergarten) on your Connect Card.