Photo by Lorie Palmer
Pastor Steve Thomas of Lewiston speaks at the Grangeville Church of the Nazarene.
As of Tuesday, June 2, 2015
GRANGEVILLE — “What are you working for?” asked Pastor Steve Thomas at the Grangeville Church of the Nazarene Sunday, May 24. “Some people think you can work for God’s favor … but we are saved through faith, by mercy and through grace.”
Thomas, of Lewiston, is the executive director of the national organization Family Promise, which helps homeless families get connected in communities, find jobs and homes. He served as a youth minister for 17 years.
Thomas laid out three truths for the congregation, taken from Ephesians 2:8-10:
*“Your acceptance into God’s family is a gift from God,” he said. “Nothing you can do can cause him to love you anymore than he already does.”
*The joy of God’s acceptance, Thomas said, enables believers to give to others.
*”It is in this giving, serving lifestyle that you experience the true eternal quality of life,” he stated.
Thomas said a relationship with God is not only about an eternal destination [heaven] but also about what is in the here and now on this planet.
“We need to live out the Christian faith not only in a way that changes us, but also in a way that changes those around us,” he emphasized.
Thomas relayed an illustration about French acrobat Charles Blondin who walked across Niagara Falls on a tightrope and asked audience members, “Now who believes I can do this while pushing a person in a wheelbarrow?” Everyone in the crowd cheered and raised their hands. “Now, who wants to be in the wheelbarrow?” he asked. The crowd was silent and only person raised his hand.
“Are you in the crowd or in the wheelbarrow?” he asked. “If you want to walk on the water with Jesus, you have to get out of the boat.”
Thomas shared a little about his work and said he never knew the extent of the homeless population in the Lewiston area until he began working with Family Promise.
“On average it takes Family Promise 60 days to get a family networked, on their feet and into a home,” he said. “That may sound like a long time, but it’s screaming fast compared to any federal program out there.”
Thomas and his wife have been married 30 years and have four children, all of whom have graduated from or are attending Northwest Nazarene University in Nampa.
For details on Thomas ministry contact: Family Promise of Lewis Clark Valley, Inc., 720 16th Avenue No. 41, Lewiston, ID 83501, phone: 798-3349, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Log onto http://www.familypromiselc.org/.