Hope Notes 08/25/2021

August 26, 2021

Hello Hoper~
     When I was little, I was heartbroken to discover that my cat Tiger had run away.  My parents were not too upset; he was a rather mean kitty. Some years later we got another cat named Charlotte. She stayed behind with my mom when I got married.  One day I was visiting and Charlotte was nowhere to be found. My mom told me she ran away; once again I was heartbroken. She was strictly an indoor kitty so I felt sick over the thought of her being outside in the cold, alone and lost.  Then my mom dropped this bomb.  “You know – she ‘got lost’ like Tiger did.”  Turns out ‘got lost’ was code for ‘put to sleep’. I was rather relieved that neither of them had actually been lost, alone, and afraid. I guess Tiger was too mean and Charlotte was too old; I suppose she felt she was protecting me. That being lost was better than being dead.  After all, if you’re lost there’s always a chance that you will be found.
Jesus said, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” (Luke 19:10) He wasn’t talking about a lost kitty, but about you and me. We are spiritually lost until we find redemption through Jesus Christ’s death on the cross.  Luke 15 tells the parable of the one lost sheep, the one lost coin, and the one lost son.  We are that one.  What a comfort to hear Jesus explain how the shepherd will leave the other ninety nine sheep to go and find the one who is lost! And to know that all of heaven rejoices with him!
     In thinking about it, I realized that there would only be one thing worse than being lost. What’s worse is being lost and having no one trying to find you.  In Ezekiel 34:16, the Lord says, “I will search for the lost and bring back the strays.…”  Thank goodness!  It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that the God of the universe, who made everything in it, who commands the seas to stay within their bounds, who sprinkled the stars across the sky with one sweep of His hand…….that He would seek after ME.  And YOU. Let that thought take root in your heart. We have been sought by God and found by Him personally.  If we have put our trust in Jesus, we are the ones sought, found, and rejoiced over in heaven. May it fill us with a fresh awareness of His love for mankind and spur us on to spread that message to others.

Once Lost, Now Found – Lois

SPIRITUAL CARE  SUNDAY MORNING MESSAGE
Hold Onto Hope
(Psalm 27:13; 1 Samuel 17:4, 8-11, 22-24, 41-47, 48-51; Romans 5:3-5)

We’re going to close our series on Remembering Who We Are by coming back to our namesake: hope. One of the simplest things we can do is hold onto it. But it may also be one of the most challenging. We lose our grip on it for so many reasons. We get discouraged, we get afraid, we get set on a particular outcome. But it is almost a paradox to live as a Christian or to operate as a church without living in a strong and abiding hope. Let’s take this morning and see what it looks like to live holding onto hope!

VERSE OF THE MONTH: 
Romans 8:14-15

“For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship.”

PRAYER PROMPT: 
Paul says that if we have been adopted with Christ, then we are also heirs with Christ provided we suffer with him. How does our status as a child of God change how you approach suffering? Ask God to help you live into your status and his child and to approach suffering with the assurances that come with being his child.

SUNDAY MORNING PRAYER:
Join us Sunday mornings at 8:00 in Pastor Mark’s office to pray for that morning’s services. Contact Bob Baumiester for more information (rbaumiester@gmail.com).    ANNOUNCEMENTSBAPTISM: September 8th at 7:00pm
It’s not too late to participate, you’ll need to attend two classes with Pastor Dave – the first will be this Sunday after the second service, and the next will be September 5th at the same time. Questions? Contact Pastor Dave at dave@hopechristianfellowship.org

CAFE: September 15th at 7:00pm
It’s time to showcase your talent at our Fall Cafe! Not a fan of the stage? Come support our performers and enjoy fellowship and entertainment! You can even bring a tasty treat to share! Sign-up in the lobby!

HOPE FAMILY NIGHTS: Fill out a sign-up form Sunday!
We’re launching Hope Family Nights this fall on Wednesday, September 22nd. Join us for dinner and fellowship from 6:00-7:00 and then attend a class from 7:00-8:00. Sign-up forms will be available this Sunday in the lobby. Make sure to register for your class using the sign-up forms in the lobby. Questions? Contact Pastor Dave at dave@hopechristianfellowship.org

  • The Comparison TrapLadies Only (Led by Dana Ott) The temptation to compare is as near as your next chat with a friend, trip to the store, or scroll down your favorite social media platform. And whether you come out on top or come up lacking, there is simply no winning in comparison. It’s actually a trap. This 4-week study includes a devotional book which has pages to complete each day as well as questions we’ll answer each Wednesday night. Hope you can join us!
  • Yard Sign ManifestoAdults All Ages (Led by Pastor Dave) You’ve seen the yard signs…In this house we believe: Science is Real, Black Lives Matter, Gay Rights are the New Civil Rights…or something to that extent. These statements compose what Rebecca McLaughlin calls, The Secular Creed. Living by this creed is supposed to ensure the good life for both ourselves and others. We’ll dissect four of those statements and see what we can affirm, what we cannot endorse, and see how ultimately it is faithfulness to Christianity that looks like Christ that is the surest way to diversity, equality and transforming-love.
  • You and Me ForeverCouples Married 10 Years or Less When you promised your spouse “until death do us part” you promised faithfulness for your entire life. But as followers of Christ, you will live an eternal life. Married couples cannot allow lesser things to distract from their marriage, but they also must not allow marriage to distract from eternal things. In this study, you’ll be challenged to view your marriage in light of eternity.
  • Crazy LoveHope’s Single Adults (Led by Jess St. Petery & Rick Mounce) It’s crazy, if you think about it. The God of the universe loves us with a radical, unconditional, self-sacrificing love. And what is our typical response? We go to church, sing songs, and try not to cuss. God is calling you to a passionate love relationship with Himself. Because the answer to religious complacency isn’t working harder at a list of do’s and don’ts—it’s falling in love with God.

Plus HopeKids! programs for nursery through 5th grade, and Hope Youth bible study for 6th-12th grades! Truly a night for the whole family. 
HOPE YOUTH
SUMMER SEND-OFF SERIES: Starts this Sunday!
Join us Sunday, August 29th from 6-8 for the first of THREE epic youth group events to close out the summer! Our first meeting will be a Glow Party! 

BIBLE STUDY: 
Join us Wednesday nights in August at 7:00 as we study the book of Judges. 

SUMMER POOL PARTY SCHEDULE:

  • Friday, August 27th from 5-8pm at the Marquez’s – 270 Kings Highway, Clarksboro

OCEAN CITY RETREAT:
Mark your calendars for our annual OC high school retreat, happening September 17-19th. More details and sign-up info to come!

HOPE KIDS
HOPEKIDS! DONATION BOARD:
Help our HopeKids! Ministry prepare for the fall! On the bulletin board outside of the GoZone, you will find our Donation Board filled with snacks and supplies we need. Choose an item to donate, grab a slip off the board, and be sure to drop your donation off in the kitchen by September 5th!

NURSERY SPLIT: Coming this fall!
Our HopeKids! WonderZone is growing! With so many new babies at Hope, we are thrilled to be reopening the Nursery 2 room! Beginning September 5th, Nursery 1 will be open to all 0-12 month olds, and Nursery 2 will be open for all 1 year olds! In order to keep both rooms open and running smoothly, we are in need of a few more volunteers to serve on the rotation. If you are interested in serving in either of our nurseries, we would love to have you on our team!  Please contact Kara May at karamay@hopechristianfellowship.org.

GO ZONE:
Our Sunday morning program for K-5th graders meets in-person at the 8:30 & 10:00 services.

GOZONE VIRTUAL EXPERIENCE:
Instead of the livestream, our GoZone kids who can’t make it to church will have their VERY OWN virtual experience designed specifically to be as accessible and exciting as possible for children at home. Make sure you’re following HopeKids Ministries on Facebook so your child can watch!