Hope Notes 12/04/2019

December 4, 2019

DEAR FRIENDS OF HOPE ~

Emily here, guest writing for the week. I follow several accounts on Instagram that post daily advent scriptures for the month. Can you believe two of them both posted about rest for today? Specifically Psalm 23:2, “He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me besides still waters.” When you think of all there is to do during the Christmas season, is lying down one of them? Probably not! I envision shopping, visiting friends and family, decorating the house (inside and out!), lots of cooking and baking, attending church events, driving around to look at lights… the list could go on. Not one of those events involves me getting a chance to lie down (well, maybe in the car if I get to be a passenger!) And while all of these things are good and fun, the holiday hustle and bustle seems to go against what God actually wants from us most – to draw close to Him and rest in His presence. To “be still and know.” After all, isn’t the whole point of the Christmas to stop and remember His spectacular arrival? As you move through this month, I’d challenge you to set aside time each day to rest and truly stop to reflect on what Christmas actually means. (Lie down if you can!) The busyness of this season means nothing if we haven’t taken the time to acknowledge why and who we are celebrating. Find your Christmas version of a green pasture and spend some time with the God who’s birth is the reason we get to have this holiday in the first place. 

SUNDAY MORNINGS   
CHRISTMAS PROGRAMS (Taking a break from our Exodus Series)
SUNDAY MORNING MESSAGE – CHRISTMAS LIGHT PRESCHOOL PROGRAM (John 1:1-5,9 / 3:19-21 / 12:46)

 As we head into the Christmas season full bore, we get to enjoy our preschoolers presenting their Christmas program this Sunday.   We love that we get to share Jesus with them each week, but we love it even more that they get to share Jesus with all of us this week.  We’ll sing Christmas carols too, and then we’ll look at the book of John where Jesus gives us the description of Himself as ‘Light’.  We’ll have a wonderful morning together dedicated to celebrating Jesus and the reason He came to this world as a baby.  And we’ll have a chance to embrace the Christmas Light!

MESSAGES AVAILABLE
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 and on YouTube “Hope Christian Fellowship”.

SUNDAY MORNING PRAYER TIME – 8:30 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 1st & 2nd Grade classroom 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!

OPPORTUNITIES FOR SPIRITUAL GROWTH 
WEDNESDAY NIGHT BIBLE STUDY 7:00 – 8:15 
Join us for our study in the book of Ephesians.  This book is a beautiful revelation of the Church and the spiritual blessings we have in Christ Jesus. Paul explains the mystery of the church and gives practical insight into living as believers.
Please Note:  Bible Study will be on hiatus through December.  We will resume on January 8th.

DECEMBER CHALLENGE VERSE –  1 John 4:7
“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.”

CHURCH CHALLENGE
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!
December
Ask God to direct money your way that you can use to give towards His Kingdom.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR FELLOWSHIP
YOUNG ADULTS – First & Third Tuesdays @ 7:00 in Youth Room
Come join us for food and fellowship and study Open to anyone who has graduated high school up through their twenties.  Currently studying ‘Finding Truth’ by Francis Chan. Contact:Dave Hallahan at dmhallahan5@gmail.com
Please Note:  Young Adults is on hiatus until January 12th.

GOD’S GIRLS WOMEN’S GROUP – First & Third Mondays at 6:30 in the Youth Room
Come and join the women of Hope as we encourage and support each other.  All women are welcome to attend! For information, contact Mary Lebeau 856-316-6301 (call or text) or marylebeau@verizon.net
Please Note: God’s Girls will not be meeting in December.

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.HOPE YOUTH MINISTRY 
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!   Follow us on Social Media:  Twitter and Instagram  @hcf_hopeyouth and  Facebook.com/hcfhopeyouth
Please Note:  Youth Group is on hiatus until January 12th. 

CHRISTMAS LOCK-IN FRIDAY, DECEMBER 20TH 
We have lots of fun activities planned, including a guest appearance from the Grinch!  Bring $25 for ice skating and pizza, along with a $5 White Elephant gift.  You won’t want to miss this!  (Drop off at the church.  Pick up is 8:00 am Saturday.)

CHILDREN’S MINISTRY 
GO ZONE 
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

HOPEKIDS HANGOUT – SUNDAY EVENINGS from  6:00 – 8:00 pm 
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!  
Please Note:  HopeKids Hangout is on hiatus until January 12th.
HOPEKIDS PRE-K CHRISTMAS PROGRAM – SUNDAY, DECEMBER 8TH at the start of both services – This Sunday!
Our littlest Hopers will be entertaining us with songs that tell the story of Jesus’ birth as they perform “Jesus: Light of the World.” You won’t want to miss this precious performance at we begin our Christmas season here at Hope!

ELEMENTARY KIDS CHRISTMAS PROGRAM – SUNDAY, DECEMBER 22ND at both services 
Join us Sunday, December 22nd at both services for our annual HopeKids! Christmas Program. Our elementary school aged Hopers will tell us the story of  the one time in history a star marked the miraculous birth of our Savior, by performing the musical drama, “A Star is Born.” This service is always moving, entertaining, and a great Sunday to bring friends and family to!

HOPE ANNOUNCEMENTS LADIES CHRISTMAS PARTY Friday, December 6th at 6:30 pm – This Friday!
We’re so excited for the holidays and what better way to kick off the season than with a party!? All our ladies (post high-school and up) are invited! f you’re able to bring a treat to share, that would be great. We’ll be playing some fun games including a silly gift exchange; be sure to bring a wrapped gift ($5 – $10 price point) so you can join in! Feel free to invite friends or family – the more the merrier! Be sure to sign up in the lobby. If you have any questions, you can see or contact Dana Ott danaott@hopechristianfellowship.org
CHRISTMAS CANTATA – FRIDAY, DECEMBER 13TH AT 7:00 & SUNDAY, DECEMBER 15TH at both servicesOur choir will be performing “One Noel” for our annual Christmas Cantata! Come listen to a soulful celebration of the season proclaiming the joy and hope brought to us through the birth of Jesus. Our Friday night performance is a great opportunity to invite out friends and family who might have a church they already attend, so make sure to take advantage of this time in addition to our two Sunday morning services! 
CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICES This year’s services will be at 4:30 & 6:00 and will each be no longer than an hour. Bring your family for a time of scripture reading, song, and carols, with a candle-lighting at the end of each service. We will have special glow stick candles for our little ones at the 4:30 service! 
SUBSCRIBE TO OUR You Tube CHANNEL! 
We post all of our Sunday morning messages as well as Wednesday night bible studies on our YouTube channel. It’s a great place to catch up on a lesson you might have missed. Subscribe to our channel, Hope Christian Fellowship, and never miss a video! You can even set-up notifications for when we post new content! If you’re interested in helping our video ministry, contact Charlie Peterson at  cajapeterson2@gmail.com.
PRAYER WALL
Have you seen our new Prayer Wall in the coffee room? Be sure to check it out and pick up a prayer request, leave your own, or both! Requests can be anonymous or leave your name, whatever you feel comfortable with. Take and leave as many as you’d like! This is a great way to connect to each other and bear one another’s burdens. 

HOPE SHARE ON FACEBOOK
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!HOPE’S  FOOD PANTRY 
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.  

OPPORTUNITIES TO SERVE
CONNECTING AND SERVING AT HOPE 
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.

THIS WEEK’S SERVANTS 
Ushers 9:00 ——Mike Hartwell
Ushers 11:00 —–Bruce Clark
Counters ———-Mike & Lois Hartwell
Greeters ———-Harriet Brittingham, Mary LeBeau, Joan Schaaf, Michele Schmidt

HOPE’S PRAYER TEAM
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.

From a place of rest (with hot cocoa in hand!)
-Emily