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It’s Thanksgiving week, Tuesday night to be exact. My family is all buzzing about doing stuff and I wanted to post concerning where i’m at right now, but first…

Last weekend was really great! On Saturday I went to the UNC/State game! 50 yard line seats (it was sweet!) and the Tarheels improved their season to 2 wins (must have been my presence). I returned just in time to attend a party with some close friends to celebrate a birthday (and eat an excellent ribeye, courtesy of my friend, Buddy Stephens).

Sunday was an unbelievable day! Both services were just great – a great anticipation seemed to be in the room. I will continue to say that I am SO BLESSED to have the opportunity to serve at a great church like Hyde Park.

Sunday night we had our annual Thanksgiving Meal and Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Dedication Service. Much props go to:

  • The cooking team who prepared a great, great meal and served 350 people in less than 25 minutes…
  • Those who prepared all of the Operation Christmas Child boxes. Our church goal was 1500 boxes to which i believe we came within 100 of reaching! Our county goal was 6000 (we came close to that one too!). A lot of people worked ALL WEEK to make sure that children around the world have Christmas and hear the message of Jesus Christ. Love it!
  • The Kingdom Kidz Choir (directed by Candi Hester) rocked, as always…
  • Potter’s Hands performed "Thank You" – bringing tears to any and everyone who loves Jesus. As I said, a great, great day.

Now, back to Thanksgiving. I’m thankful for…

God’s wonderful salvation. I know that you aren’t surprised that I would say this, but if you would have told me 11 years ago I would be a pastor on staff at a church I would have died laughing. "God, You have completely changed all that was important to me. You’ve given me a new life, new hopes, new dreams, new direction and a new vision for my life. You have blessed me so much, and I give you praise right here, right now, in the presence of all who read this blog."

My Family. The covenant relationship that Keyna and I entered into almost 17 years ago (December 16) has been the constant in an everchanging world for me. Our relationship has been through much but she has always been there for me. She put up with a lot prior to my transformation (and after). I love her and continue to look forward (God willing) to a long life with her. Our children are the icing on an otherwise wonderful cake bringing fulfillment and completion to our dream of being "a family". "God, thank You for my family – help us to build our lives around You, seeking You in all decisions."

My Friends. It’s funny that before I became a Christian (but was considering trusting God) part of what held me back was the thought that most of my friends would leave me if I became a Christ follower. My life revolved around my friends (especially those in my bands). But today I find myself with more friends than I have ever had in my life. Our relationships are close, deep and Christ-centered. "Father, thank you for the wonderful people that you have chosen for me to "do life with". I pray your blessings on them and their families as we seek You together."

My Church. I live my dream. Before I came to Hyde Park, all I wanted was to serve a church like we are. We weren’t "that kind of church" when I first came, but little by little God has made my dream a reality. Our Pastor (Dennis Harrell) is wonderful and a trusted friend. Our staff is passionate about accomplishing God’s plan for their ministry. Our music is slammin’! We’ve come so far in that area. Our services are passionate and our future is BEYOND EXCITING! I can’t wait for you to fully hear what will be happening at HP in the next 4 months. We’re going to see things that no church in our area has ever seen and in the process (with the power of God, by His Spirit) we’re gonna reach the masses with the message of the Gospel. And I’m gonna love every minute…

Honestly, there’s so much more that I’m thankful for, but i’m stopping here. God is good and I love serving Him. Over the next few days, love your families much – bless your friends & pray audibly for them and let’s prepare for the greatest time of our lives.

By the way, I am preaching this weekend, AM & PM. The message will actually be a 2 part series (1morning/1evening) called "A New Look on Life" with the Sunday morning message titled "Christ-Colored Glasses". I deeply appreciate your prayers as my desire is not to fill the preaching slot, but to be used by God to speak a message that brings transformation into the life of those who hear. I would never want to waste anyones time. I want people to walk out of Hyde Park knowing exactly what they need to do to improve their life over the next week.

I love you guys so much – You are part of what makes my life WHOLE. Have a happy Thanksgiving.

Striving to live a WholeHearted Life,

mike p

One Comment on "Thankful"

  1. gr8fulone says:

    I thank God for you friend. You have been an inspiration to me since I came to HPBC. I thank God that He made me turn that steering wheel to the left that Sunday morning, because I know now that I found a home. God bless you and yours and maybe i will see ya in the next day or so since I am off Friday. You have me hooked on this blogging now. I wanna get more involved again in the different ministries at HPBC again and help guide someone else like you have done for me. GBU brother!

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