Hope Notes 9/26/18

September 26, 2018

Dear Friends of Hope,

When our daughter Emily was little, there was a song by Kathy Mattea that I used to listen to a lot; whenever it came on she would tease me about the sappy lyrics (it still makes me cry to this day!). I came across it the other day and this time the chorus sparked a new thought. It made me reflect on some of the ways we overlook what is rightfully ours as children of the King. The songs says how we “go through life parched and empty, standing knee deep in a river, and dying of thirst.” It’s sad but true – so often we have what we need right there in front of us, but we fail to reach out and grab hold. It’s RIGHT THERE and yet we don’t see it! How many times does God hold out His Hand to us and we reject it in favor of trying to muddle through on our own? Sometimes our circumstances can cause us to see our lives as a prison; we wear the key on a chain around our necks yet never unlock the door. All this time, God is waiting patiently for us to turn to Him. And still. Peace eludes us. Solutions to problems evade us. Our merciful Father has what we need. What is rightfully ours as heirs to His Kingdom. We have at our disposal the ‘peace that passes all of our understanding’ (Philippians 4:7). We have an ‘ever present help in times of trouble’ (Psalm 46:1). We have a ‘friend who sticks closer than a brother’ (Proverbs 18:24). We have His wisdom at our disposal. ‘If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you’ (James 1:5). We don’t have to go it alone. Let’s open our eyes to His glorious riches. Approach His throne of grace with confidence (Hebrews 4:16). Drink from His river of mercy. No matter what your ‘prison’ is, remembering these Truths will help you not to impede the inheritance that God has for you.

The greatest sermon ever preached still has unbelievable power to change us. Jesus spoke these words about 2000 years ago to a large audience on a hillside, but He meant them to challenge us as well. The thoughts upend normal thinking on almost every spiritual front, and if we want to follow Jesus, much of what He represents starts here!

(A Quick Break from our Series This Sunday)
Are you tired of feeling like you’re racing through life, but you have no time for what matters? Discouraged when you think about the lack of meaningful relationships and deep friendships? Perhaps you are wrung out from all your responsibilities and calendar demands and wondering when you ever get a chance to take care of yourself and your soul. Many of us find ourselves in these places in life. But we have good news for you: we believe that carving out time to be a part of a small group can set your life on a path towards a healthy soul and life-giving relationships. We have taken this entire month as a church family and talked about getting connected to a small group. Hopefully, you’ll come and see what we’re doing and what God has been doing through small groups. And then we’ll ask everyone to find a way to commit to a small group. It will be a decision you won’t regret – and it may just bring back life to your soul!
Sunday’s worship service is available on CD immediately following the service for FREE. Pick up a copy for yourself or for anyone you would like to share Hope with. Pastor Mark’s messages are also available on our website: www.hopechristianfellowship.org.

SUNDAY MORNING PRAYER TIME – 8:30 in Pastor Mark’s Office
Do you have a heart for prayer? Our Sunday morning prayer time is open to everyone. We pray for the services that morning and for the needs in the church. If you would like to participate, just show up! “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” (Matthew 18:20)

PRAYER HUDDLE – 8:40 to 8:45 for Both Services
The prayer huddle is open to anyone who would like to come pray – but it is specifically intended for those who are serving on that Sunday. So if you’re scheduled to be in kids’ ministry, greeting, in the tech booth, on worship team, or any other ministry role for a given Sunday, join us at 8:40 sharp in the Youth Room to pray together for God’s power in each of us. We can do all things through Christ, and nothing of worth without Him, so let’s come together each Sunday to ask for God’s Spirit to fill us and use us!

SEPTEMBER CHALLENGE VERSE – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-19
“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench the Spirit.”

Unable to make it out for Wednesday nights? We are LIVE STREAMING our Thinking Out Loud series on Facebook! Watch and interact from your phone or computer live! We’ll also continue to post videos of the night to our YouTube channel, so you can catch up at anytime. Or, listen to our Podcast on iTunes.

We’re going to take Wednesday nights and talk through together as a church family some of the pressing cultural issues of today. We may disagree with one another, but we’ll have the discussion anyway. We’ll treat one another with respect and work towards understanding each other. And in the end, we’ll pray that the Lord will lead each one of us in our response to these issues. We want to have open hearts to God’s direction. And we want our church to be a place where we can discuss anything – even when we disagree – with the love we’re called to have for each other.
9/26 Sorting Our Science vs Creation
It’s possible you’ve never heard either side of this discussion, but most people have heard the argument more than they’d like to. We’re going to take a look at how we take what science is telling us and deal with what we read in the first two chapters of the Bible. Plus, we can go further and see if there are any other parts of the Bible that tell us what happened when the world was made. It probably takes a healthy dose of humility to have this discussion, but we’re confident that we can come together as a church family and discuss this very important topic.
10/10 Immigration – What Should Christians Want?
How should Christians think, talk, and act in the current American immigration debate? Some think that being a Christ follower means we should honor the laws and expect / demand that others do the same. Others think it means that we welcome most if not all foreigners into our country with open arms. Is there a genuine Biblical answer here? And how can we be a part of the solution instead of feeding into the destructive discourse? Let’s put our hearts and minds together on this topic and see what our Lord teaches us.

10/17 Addressing Depression
10/24 Racism

Visit the table in the back of the sanctuary to sign-up for a small group and to get more information and resources. Small Group Sunday will be September 30th. Contact Dave Hallahan (dmhallahan5@gmail.com) or Chick Dougherty (chickdoc@verizon.net) with any questions.

YOUNG ADULTS – 1st & 3rd Tuesdays at 7:30 in Youth Room
Open to anyone who has graduated high school up to their early thirties. Contact Dave Hallahan at dmhallahan5@gmail.com.

GOD’S GIRLS WOMEN’S GROUP – First & Third Mondays at 6:30 pm
For information, contact Mary Lebeau 856-316-6301 (call or text) or marylebeau@verizon.net

MEN’S BREAKFAST – 8:00 – 9:30 am – 2nd Saturday of Every Month
Come and join us for a delicious breakfast and a good time of fellowship/sharing with the men of Hope. Feel free to bring a friend! Open to men 18 and older.

YOUTH GROUP – Sundays from 6:00 – 8:00
Our middle school and high school groups meet right here at church! Come out for another amazing year as we grow closer together and closer to God!

Go Zone is our Sunday Morning kid’s service, planned especially for K-5th graders. Our goal is to encourage the kids to live with their focus on “GOing for GOD, GOing for GROWTH, and GOing FOREVER!” This service includes worship, games, and exploring important biblical truths in fun and creative ways before heading off to Sunday school.
Follow HopeKids! Ministries on Facebook at: facebook.com/HCFHopeKid

Christmas is right around the corner and come October, HopeKids! will be gearing up for another great year of celebrating Jesus’ birth, through musical programs! We need volunteers who are willing to help with all of the preparation including teaching the songs and script, supervising practices and putting the program together for both the K-5th program and the Pre-K program. Please contact Matt Russell if you are interested.

Hey 6th Graders! Don’t forget in the month of September we will be having a special GoZone Class just for you during the 11:00 service! Hope to see you there!

Bullying is a serious issue in our schools and can have devastating effects on a child’s perception of themselves and the world. We want our HopeKids! to know how to handle it when it happens to them. We also want to make sure they aren’t the ones being the bullies! In the month of September we’ll be doing a special Back To School series on bullying at the 9:00 and 11:00 services on Sunday mornings. Even if your child hasn’t faced this type of situation yet, they will eventually so we want to make sure they are prepared! And if you know a child struggling with this topic make sure to invite them out as well! All are welcome!

K-5th Grade Bible Study and Epic Hangout Time
Join us for a study of God’s word, snacks, video games, theme nights and epic skits! We’ll kick things off with a pizza party so come hungry and bring a friend!

For the formation and spiritual connection of Small Groups.
For Trunk or Treat.
For the upcoming elections of officers during the month of October.

Attention Hope Partners! Now is the time to place your votes for 2019 Deacon team members and Leadership team members. Remember, only partners can vote and we need everyone to participate! Voting forms and instructions are located on the sign-up table in the lobby. Submit completed forms in the offering bin, or give to Pastor Mark. Forms are due by October 28th. For any questions, see Pastor Mark.

K-LOVE TRAINING PROGRAM – Tuesday, October 9th from 7:00 – 8:00 pm
Interested in becoming a volunteer for K-LOVE radio station? K-Love will be hosting a volunteer training event here at Hope. For more information, contact Rob Jacoby at rjacoby107@comcast.net

Hope Share just got easier than ever! Our new page is a closed group for Hopers only. It’s easy to upload photos of items you’d like to give away and to search for that special item you just might need! Join the group and start meeting each other’s needs! Visit facebook.com/HCFWoodbury/ and request to join!

BAPTISM SERVICE – Wednesday, October 3rd
REMINDER FOR THOSE BEING BAPTIZED: Classes are being held this week (September 23rd) and next (September 30th) immediately following the second service. A lite lunch is being provided.
REMINDER FOR OUR CONGREGATION: It’s always an incredible encouragement to everyone who comes and it’s a wonderful opportunity for our Hope family to encourage those being baptized! Come out and support our brothers and sisters in Christ as they share their testimonies and take this next step in their faith journey!

Is your family in need of some food assistance? We have a small food pantry here at Hope and want to help you during your difficult time. Head on over to our kitchen located on the front left side of the auditorium after the service. One of our pantry workers will be in there to assist you. You can also speak to one of the ushers or Pastor Mark and they will direct you to someone who can help.

There are so many places to connect and serve here at Hope. There truly IS ‘something for everyone’ and we want to make it easy for you to know all the different options! You can go to our website (hopechristianfellowship.org), click on ‘Going Deeper’, and you will see all our ministries and the various teams they have. You can also check out our Ministry and Service Opportunities brochure (on the glass tables). Keep your eye on this section as we post any pressing needs.

For all Kids Ministry scheduling, please refer to the Planning Center or contact your team leader.
Ushers 9:00 ——-Bob Baumiester
Ushers 11:00 ——Ryan Winstel
Counters ———–TBD
Greeters ————Irene Riddell, Pat Keith, Charlotte Zediker, Jeanne Wurst

If you have a prayer request, please fill out a prayer request card and drop it in one of the Card Boxes located at the front of the auditorium (you can find the prayer request cards there) or use the “Contact Us Form” on our website: http://www.hopechristianfellowship.org/contact/.
If you have any questions or would like to join the Prayer Team, please contact Hap Cunningham: hapcunn01@gmail.com.
PLEASE NOTE: We would greatly appreciate it if you could keep the team updated on your request. Situations can resolve or change for the better/worse. Praises are always welcome! This will help our team know best how to pray for you.

Standing in His Mercy,