Hope Notes 2/6/19

February 6, 2019

Dear Hope Friends,
Theodore Roosevelt once said, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” I bet you’ve experienced that. Especially with all the social media readily available for us to do a blow by blow observation of what the rest of the world is doing. Even though I’m sure we all realize that people post the highlights, the good times, the perfectly posed ‘candid’ shots……..it can still lead to a bit of insecurity or even envy. Comparisons always deal a death blow to our contentment. God knows this about us. We are told in Scripture NOT to compare ourselves to other. “Do your own work well, and then you will have something to be proud of. But don’t compare yourself with others.” (Galatians 6:4 CEV) We need to do our best and be our best without comparing ourselves to those around us. Comparison also breeds competition. We may get caught in the trap of making sure we also post only the highlights and show off the best parts of our lives. Have you ever discarded a photo because it wasn’t ‘good enough’ to show others? I have. “Don’t do anything from selfish ambition or from a cheap desire to boast, but be humble toward one another, always considering others better than yourselves.” (Philippians 2:3 GNT)
God does not measure us against other’s accomplishments or status in life. Neither should we. So what should we do? We need to stop comparing and start striving to be our own best selves. If we must compare, compare ourselves to the very Word of God. Ask ourselves what Paul asked himself in Galatians 1:10 – “Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people?” Are we living the way God intends for us to live? Are we following His commands? Romans 1:12-“Do not be conformed to this world…” Matthew 6:33- “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness….” Matthew 22:37- “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” These are just a small sampling of how God would have us live. If we can stop comparing ourselves to others and simply compare how we are doing with living as dictated by God’s standards, I believe we will find ourselves much more content with our lives. And remember, “For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends.” (2Corinthians 10:18)

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!

SUNDAY MORNING MESSAGE – Where is Your Treasure? (Matthew 6:19-24)
Back in the day, boys would trade baseball cards. Most of us didn’t think it was important to keep the cards pristine. In fact, some even used them to recreate a motorcycle sound by putting them in the spokes of their bikes. Later, baseball cards became a legitimate hobby, and collectors drove the price of certain cards to unimaginable heights. Of course, if a little boy knew how much that card would eventually be worth, he might have taken more care in protecting it! Jesus talks about our treasure. What we value tends to drive our lives. If we think something lacks value, we will be less careful with it and have less stress if something happens to it. But if we believe something is a treasure, we will focus our energies on protecting and preserving it. Citizens of the Kingdom value different stuff than everyone else. Which side do our own values line up with?
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!

“You were taught with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”

Each month we’ll focus on one of our church goals for 2019 and have a weekly challenge to help us achieve it! Let’s ask the Lord to work through us this year!
February – Meaningful Integration
Find someone at Hope today that you don’t know and go talk to them; ask their name and find a way to remember it!

One of the most important things we can do in our relationship with God is to read His word. And yet, we often feel overwhelmed or don’t know where to start! The new year is a great time to set a bible reading goal and we have some resources to help! Check out the sign-up table for our bible reading plans. One plan will guide you to read through the New Testament in a year reading about a chapter per day, while the other plan is more of an overview of the entire bible in a year, reading about 15 verses a day. You can also download the PDFs on our website under the “Resources” drop-down.

Come join us for this study on the book of Ephesians. It’s a good mid-week boost for our spiritual growth. If you are unable to make it out, you can watch our live stream on Facebook!

We have a variety of small groups set up for you to join! This is an easy way to get connected and grow closer to your fellow Hopers. Check out the Small Groups Bulletin Board to see what’s going on or contact Dave Hallahan (dmhallahan5@gmail.com) or Chick Dougherty (chickdoc@verizon.net) with any questions.

YOUNG ADULTS – First & Third Tuesdays @ 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.

We’re heading to Blue Mountain! Ski Rental and Lift Ticket are only a combined $70! We’ll stop for food on the way up. Please let Dave Hallahan know if you’re interested or if you have any questions (dave@hopechristianfellowship.org).

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!

PARENTS VS TEENS – Sunday, February 10th – This Sunday!
The time has come to determine the ultimate generation. All of our parents are invited to join us for our regular youth group…with one small twists. All of our games will be parents vs teens!

30 Hour Famine (March 22-23)
Be sure to follow on Facebook (Rooted – HCF Youth Group) and Instagram (@hcf_rooted) for updates!

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

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!

For the month of January, we averaged $7878 per week. This is well below our annual giving target of $8500 per week, so we have some work to do to catch up as we go into 2019. It also reminds us of the importance of remembering that weather impacted Sundays can make our challenge greater. Use online giving to make sure you regularly and faithfully support what God is doing at Hope!
Also, for our HVAC special project giving, we have to date raised $42,747, putting us about 2/3 of our way towards our ultimate goal of $65,000. We are in the process of moving forward significantly on our Air Conditioning repairs through the first half of this year, and we may be able to move forward on our boiler replacement in the fall. Of course, this is contingent on being able to see the final $22,000 raised. Keep praying and giving as God provides!

Calling all Singers! We’re excited to invite you to be part of an Easter choir for 2019! We will be performing “The Story-The Musical” which is based on the book by Max Lucado with music written by Nichole Nordemann. It’s not just a Resurrection story, it’s the bigger, beautiful, miraculous story of God’s redemptive plan from Genesis to Revelation. Choir practices will begin on Wednesday, February 27 from 7:00 – 8:30 pm and run for 8 weeks. The performance dates will be Good Friday (April 19th) and Easter Sunday (April 21st) at both services. Sign up sheet is in the lobby. See Dana Ott with any questions or for more information!
Note: If you did not get a bottle this past Sunday, we have some more available now!
Are you remembering to put your change into your Choices of the Heart Crisis Pregnancy Center’s baby bottles? You can even keep it simple by writing a tax deductible check made payable to Choices of the Heart and slip it into the bottle. As local women see their babies on the free ultrasound tests, the percentage who choose life is remarkably increased. Save the babies – fill your bottles and return by February 24th. See Wendy Devereaux with questions.

K-LOVE VOLUNTEER TRAINING – Saturday, February 16th from 10:00-11:00 am
Once again we are hosting some volunteer training for anyone interested in helping out at K-Love for things such working the outreach booth at concerts,community and Church events, various parades and large events. For additional information, contact Rob Jacoby at rjacoby107@comcast.net.

Love to read but not sure what? Made a resolution to read more? We’ll read a book a month and then meet the first Saturday of the month to discuss that book. Most of the books will be in the Christian non-fiction category and will encourage you to grow in your faith. If this seems like a great fit for you, sign up in the lobby. Any questions contact Dave Hallahan. For February we’ll be reading Gospel Fluency: Speaking the Truths of Jesus Into the Everyday Stuff of Life by Jeff Vanderstelt. Note: readers are responsible for their books.

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!

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.

Ushers 9:00 ——Mike Hartwell
Ushers 11:00 —–Bruce Clark
Counters ———-LaTosha Briggs, Barb Frazeur
Greeters ———–Ken Blythe, Karen Hosey, Ellen Boales, Karl Miller

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.

** That the Lord would help us effectively integrate new folks so they will easily and quickly feel like they are fully connected at Hope.
** That God would lead us to the right man for the future Assistant Pastor position and provide the necessary weekly giving growth to add him to staff.

Incomparably Loved by the King,