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  • Wade Paton

Year End Greeting

Dear Stony Plain Alliance family,

As I was dropping my son off at school this morning it dawned on me that we are in the last month of 2022. By way of revelations, I know this doesn’t rank very high on the list of amazing insights. But for some reason, the thought kind of startled me. So, with a little too much volume for the time of day, I exclaimed, “Daniel! Dude! We’re into the last month of the year! Can you believe it?!” The heartfelt response of my 16-year-old was a resounding, “Mmm. Ya.” I know he was just holding back his true feelings of wonder to balance out my odd exuberance. At least that’s what I’m telling myself today.

The thought did strike with me some surprise that this year is already coming to a close. December always seems to sneak up on me and somehow arrive too soon. And yet, I’m thankful for this arbitrary marking of time in our calendars because it has a way of calling us to both reflection and anticipation.

As I reflect on the year that was as a church family there’s a few things that immediately come to mind. First, I am beyond grateful for how you’ve welcomed my family and me as we joined this community in June. Uprooting, moving, and re-settling is never easy but the way you have embraced us is deeply meaningful. Thank-you for being a community that leads with love.

I also find myself reflecting on the miracle of community that I witness every week as people from different backgrounds, places, and experiences gather to pursue fullness of life for everyone by practicing the way of Jesus together. Whether this is happening in our weekend services, life groups, prayer meetings, youth and young adult nights, hymn sings, coffee shop conversations, acts of hospitality or collective outreach activities, this faith community is a gift, and we must not take it for granted. What an enormous privilege to be part of the empowering work of the Holy Spirit as people of all ages are learning what it means to be loved by God each and every day.

This, in turn, brings to my mind all the ways that you have contributed so generously to this ministry with your prayers, finances, and time. It is these investments that have made it possible to continue to reach people with the good news of Jesus. Every minute spent serving others, every amount given with a joyful heart, and every intercession offered in faith, has made this church what it is. On behalf of your team and elders, thank-you for being people that practice abundant generosity.

As we now look with anticipation to the year ahead, we do so by choosing to wholeheartedly trust Jesus for all that will unfold in the coming days. If we’ve learned anything over the past few years it’s that, with all of the uncertainty and unpredictability of life, Jesus alone is the solid rock on which we stand. He is the one, “…who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.” (Eph. 320) May this year be one in which we pray our boldest prayers, give our most generous gifts, and experience together a fullness of life that is better than we can even imagine.



If you’d like to contribute financially to the ministry of Stony Plain Alliance Church please go to our Giving page and hit the Give Now button. All gifts over $10 received before midnight on December 31, will receive a charitable tax receipt for this year.


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