Blog Post by
Rev. Cedric Portis
Co-Moderator of the Committee on Local Arrangements (COLA)

The 223 General Assembly is upon us. I’m confident that our preparation and planning will pay off this week as we welcome and host Presbyterians from all over the world.
These past two years I’ve had the privilege of serving as co-moderator of the Committee on Local Arrangements (COLA). As I continued my work as pastor of Third Presbyterian, there were times the work seemed overwhelming. It was then, in the middle of an already overloaded schedule, God gave me a revelation.
This is how it happened.
When I normally plan my day, I come up with a list of what I HAVE to do.  My revelation is very simple. I change HAVE to GET!!!  This may seem insignificant, but it is revelatory for me. This answer to prayer changes my focus and motivation.
I want to share this testimony with you so that we may all realize the gift we have.  As the Presbytery of Giddings Lovejoy, we can look at this week and say collectively we GET the opportunity to interact, impact, and transform the church, as we do the work of GA.
Perhaps this small change in perspective will continue to excite and motivate us this upcoming week. We have asked the PC(USA) to meet us in St. Louis, and now they are arriving by the thousands! I’m looking forward to seeing you there as well.
Rev. Cedric Portis
Pastor, Third Presbyterian Church


  • Posted June 12, 2018 4:11 pm
    Carrie Rao

    Thank you for this revelation, Cedric! I’ve been making to do lists forever, and while I love crossing things off upon completion, I believe I get more out of counting my tasks as blessings. Especially when they are things like “go to the grocery store” or “fold laundry.” Thanks be to God I don’t have to hunt for food or wear tattered scraps of material to cover myself! And God Bless GA in St Louis. Can’t wait!!

  • Posted June 12, 2018 4:33 pm
    Gina Duncan Smutz

    Thank you for this simple revolutionary reminder. In the midst of busy schedules and what seem to be shorter days (the older I become)…I appreciate your positive spin! GA has been well planned and we are ready to go!

  • Posted June 12, 2018 5:56 pm
    Mike Willock

    Well said, Cedric. Many of our food pantry guests at Second each week will say with thanks, “God got me up this morning”, so God gave us another day to be thankful for, a day to remember our blessings and to use our gifts, a day filled with things we now “get” to do. And they sometimes also say, “Not everyone got up this morning.” We are truly blessed.

  • Posted June 12, 2018 6:10 pm
    Clyde Crumpton

    Thank you for the reminder of what we GET to do in our opportunities to serve.
    With yours and Carol’s leadership, Giddings-Lovejoy is well prepared to host GA 223. We are excited and looking forward to the experience!
    Again, Thank You!

  • Posted June 12, 2018 9:54 pm
    Charles Pfeifer

    I wish you all God’s richest blessings as you gather together.

  • Posted June 12, 2018 11:35 pm

    Indeed. Each day is a blessing — an opportunity — a privilege in which to love God and our neighbors everywhere!

  • Posted June 13, 2018 1:15 pm
    Hugh V STEWART

    Well said, Cedric, and a freeing perspective for us all . . especially those who gather the years. Thanks. H U G H

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