Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Journey Book Club January 8th

The Journey Book Club will meet at the church Friday January 8th from 6:30- 8:30 for fun, fellowship and the discussion of One Holy Night by author J.M. Hochstetler. Sis. Lynne and Sis. Lisa always make the evening fun for everyone. This time the menu features "healthy foods" for a dessert or entry to share. I've been singing the Sesame Street Healthy foods song ever since the last meeting...but still haven't come up with a healthy idea...anyone with an idea can leave a comment on the blog.

Sneak peaks of the book we are just finishing and our new selection.

Current Book
One Holy Night by J.M Hochstetler

Book to be passed out on January 8th Lying on Sunday by Sharon K. Souza

Seasme Street Healthy food

Monday, December 14, 2009

Sermon and Sunday school video

Pastor John's sermon Sunday was titled "This is War" What kind of message was that for the month of December one might ask? What has that to do with Christmas? Well, when we ponder Christmas we remember that down the road a little while the wise men came to give gifts to Jesus and were warned in a dream to go home a different way because Herod wanted to kill Jesus because he feared that his hold on power would be hindered if prophecy was fulfilled. Joseph also was warned in a dream to flee to Egypt until the danger was gone. You see even in the midst of the birth of our Savior the enemy of our soul sought to keep the promised messiah from fulfilling his destiny which promised to free mankind from the the grip of satan.

We have an enemy

It is important for us to understand that we do have an enemy. The Bible tells us that " For we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." Ephesians 6:12

Our enemy seeks our ruin
8Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: (1 Peter 5:8, King James Version)

We have victory
We know that in Christ we have victory over all the works of the enemy. Like Joseph and the wise men we need to listen to the voice of God and see our destiny fulfilled.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Christmas Miracles

Click here to view Pastor John's Sermon God Answers Prayer and Bro. Larry's Sunday School

We visited some folks tonight who were watching the Christmas specials. They told us they enjoy watching them every year. We liked to hear that because we do too. When we went home we found a really sweet Christmas show on Hallmark and just sat back and enjoyed it. You know the plot...a miracle at Christmas time. The show we watched dealt with broken family relationships and dealing with the grief of loosing a spouse. All this with the help of an angel....with the angel played by the mother from Everybody loves Raymond.

Does Christmas really bring miracles? Well, we know that the first Christmas was a miracle. The miracle started with the Holy Spirit overshadowing Mary and her conception of Jesus... Elizabeth and Zacharias had a miracle in their old age and were able to conceive....and finally there is a the matter of a great star announcing the birth of Jesus.

I believe God always wants to do miracles that will show forth His glory. Miracles that will restore relationships, heal bodies and the broken hearted, and draw people to Jesus. Perhaps people are more receptive to believe God during the Christmas season.

The Christmas shows come to a happy ending in 2 hours or less. I like that time frame. Real life doesn't work that way. The movies always have a part where it looks like things won't turn out...I hate that part because it mirrors life....except life usually doesn't resolve itself in the quick time frame the movie does. Mary's miracle might not have seemed like such a miracle when Joseph was upset and threatening to divorce her....Zacharias was mute for the whole time his wife was pregnant and the wisemen had to skirt around Herod to avoid danger both for them and baby Jesus.

Don't discount a Christmas miracle...and don't let the problem part of the "movie of your life" change your faith in God's ultimate victory.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

God's Presence in a hectic life

Click here for Pastor John's Sermon "Get Back Up" and Bro Larry's Sunday School Class

It is the time of year when magazines have articles about how to take the stress out of Christmas preparations. We can begin to feel like the stress of everyday life will not allow the entrance of one more responsibility. The past year has brought additional stresses due to the national recession. I'm reminded that the first Christmas had some stresses too. Joseph,traveling with Mary who was due any time, had to find a place to spend the night in a crowded city where finding a room seemed impossible.
The God ordained generosity of a harried inn keeper provided the backdrop for the most wonderful birth the world had ever witnessed. In a simple barn surrounded by animals our Savior came into the world.

Are you stressed this Christmas season? Do you find it interesting that the first Christmas was surrounded by the opportunity to allow stressful situations to rule the day? Instead Joseph keep knocking and the inn-keeper opened the door (okay, yeah it was the door to the barn not the inn...but he was filled up to capacity and he did find space). Jesus came in the midst of all of this...He still wants to be the focus of Christmas and give us the beautiful gift of His presence.