This February 11th – at 5:00 pm, we will be having our second Couples Event. Our last Couples Dinner out at Mama’s Fine Italian followed by our dessert here at the Fellowship Hall was a Blast! So much fun with all of us together! What a blessing that we have this church family to have fellowship with ~ to share with ~ and to grow together in our faith and our walk with Christ!
At this next event we will once again be having a dinner, but instead of a restaurant ~ we will be breaking in to small groups to have dinner in the home of a couple. We’ll meet at the church for appetizers and some fun and then we will draw names for our dinner party companions and travel to dinner then back to the church for a special dessert and some devotions and sharing by Pastor Sheridan and others.
One day Jesus told a story about a man who was traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho when he was robbed, beaten, and left for dead. Two religious folk—let’s call one a pastor and the other a board member—came upon the man in need and carefully passed by on the other side of the road. They knew enough to avoid a problem when they saw one!
Later on, a fellow came along who had no real ties to the injured man. They weren’t from the same community; they were of different races and even different religions. Yet this stranger did something the other to gentlemen had failed to do—he took compassion on the man in need. He was seeing as God sees!
You realize that I’m referring to the story of the Good Samaritan. This masterful little tale teaches us to look beyond the many things that can separate us from others, especially those who are in need, and to see them as God does, with eyes of compassion.
This Sunday I’ll be challenging you to do just that as we explore a powerful teaching of John the Baptist (see Luke 3:1–18). Between now and then, give try this exercise. Call to mind the person or group of people whom you know who are in need. Now ask yourself this question: when I think of these folk, do I see a problem to be avoided or do I see precious souls whom Jesus loves?
When we can see the latter, we’ll be seeing others as God sees them.
You are loved—
How incredible to see God working through His people!
This past week, following one of our Growth Groups, we were talking out in the foyer of the church and a member of the group commented on the lesson topic with tears in her eyes how hard it is to keep joy in your heart when so many things in life keep piling on. Over the past four years her family has gone through some very difficult times financially and that day she and her husband received news that it would become a possibility that they could lose their house. She was at the end of her means and didn’t know what to do. There in the foyer , she looked at me and asked, ” How can I have joy?”
I responded,” You will have joy, because God is your joy. Because you are God’s and God is yours. He will provide!”
Another group member standing with us said, ” That’s easy for you to say, you are not going through it!”
I said, ” That is true, but I know what it is like to have to trust God and find my joy in God when times are their toughest. We had a one year old baby girl and my wife Laura was diagnosed with cancer.” God was our joy through that very difficult time.
I left the conversation thinking and praying, God, I know you can provide; you can do anything; will you do it here? I really hoped so.
I received a text message the very next day from the woman who had asked “how can I have joy.” She asked me to thank the person who gave them $1,200 to meet their need! I responded: Praise God, Jehovah-jirah. The Lord will provide!I told her I would love to thank whoever gave that money to you , but this is the first I am hearing of it. I know that through someone’s obedience and open heart to God that He provided.
Then I prayed, God you are awesome! You are still the same – yesterday, today and forever!! Jehovah-jirah!
God doing miraculous things through His people – How awesome is that ? !
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Here are a few of the things to look forward to this January 2012 –
Jan. 14: Children’s Workers Meeting 10:30 am at the church, if you are a worker in the Children’s Department or just interested in finding out where you might be able to volunteer and serve come and meet with Shirley Yoder our Children’s Ministry Director.
Jan. 20 – Girls Night Out at 7:00 pm/location to be announced soon. Ladies get this fun evening on the calendar, every time we get together it’s a wonderful evening of fun and fellowship and strengthening our walk with the Lord.
Jan. 21 – Sublime Youth Group Snow Day !! They will leave the church at 9:00 am, let Pastor Kyle know right away if you are going!
Jan. 28 – 456 ! An event for grades 4 – 6. A scavenger hunt starting at 4:00 pm at the church. FUN!