Hope Notes 01/11/2023

January 12, 2023

Hello Hoper,  
 This is the time of year when I see lots of what I like to call “Christmas Carnage” all over the neighborhood.  You know what I mean – all those inflatable Christmas decorations that now lie sadly deflated on the lawns across America.  They look like casualties of some unknown suburban war. The air that is necessary to keep them happily plump and upright has been disconnected. They are left in sorrowful little piles, nothing but limp plastic on the ground, unable to function the way they are intended to.
     I’m wondering about the shambles my own life is in when I am disconnected from the Source necessary to keep me upright and functioning as I am designed to do. Just as those inflatables need electric power to keep the airflow going, so we also need to plug into the biggest source of all powers in heaven and on earth, if we want to be assured of quality living. Who is this source of power? He is God Almighty, Who has made Himself available to us through His Son, Jesus Christ. “Yet for us there is [only] one God, the Father, Who is the Source of all things.…” (1 Corinthians 8:6 AMPC) We all need a source in our lives that we can depend on. A source is a supplier of something that we cannot produce on our own.  I know that my own strength will fade.  My own ability to seek out what is good and right and true is poor to say the least.  I need Someone bigger than me.  More powerful than me.  Who better than the One who created the world and breathed life into all living things? “For everything comes from him and exists by his power and is intended for his glory…” (Romans 11:36 NLT)  Christ is the main source of life. In Him, we have life and have it abundantly. “I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things…..” (1 Timothy 6:13) I do not want to live my life, deflated and defeated like those sad little Christmas inflatables.  I will keep myself ‘plump and upright’ by staying connected to the Source of life, reading His Word and listening for His voice to guide me.
Connected to the One True Source – Lois

SPIRITUAL CARE  

SUNDAY MORNING MESSAGE: 
A Known Betrayal (John 13:18-30)
Betrayal is a wound in the soul that feels like it changes everything. You don’t know who you can trust or if you will ever be able to put your faith in someone again. All of your thoughts bend toward how you didn’t see it coming or didn’t believe what you saw.  Regret can spill into those thoughts as well and start to disable you from even trusting yourself. But in this story, we are presented with a different outcome to betrayal. We know what’s coming so we can connect the dots. Judas’ betrayal of Jesus led to the events of the cross and the empty tomb. And Jesus knew Judas was going to betray him; he actually sent Judas to do it.  What does this have to do with us? And how is this betrayal part of why this group went out and changed the world? Let’s think through that together.

PRAYER HUDDLE: 
If you’re volunteering on a Sunday morning, whether its greeting, HopeKids!, in the sound booth, etc., please join us for a team prayer huddle! We want to gather together everyone who is serving that morning to pray for the services. Beginning this Sunday we will meet at 8:40 in the GoZone!

SUNDAY MORNING PRAYER:
Anyone can join us Sunday mornings at 8:30 in Pastor Mark’s office to pray for that morning’s services. Contact Bob Baumiester for more information (rbaumiester@gmail.com). 

VERSE OF THE MONTH:
Matthew 5:3-5
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.”

ANNOUNCEMENTS

LEVEL UP ON WEDNESDAY NIGHTS: 
Wednesday nights in 2023 we are focusing on taking your relationship with Jesus to the next level by offering programs for all ages built to strengthen your faith and deepen your spiritual knowledge. Here is our list of classes for adults:

  • FOUNDATIONS: Led by Pastor Mark We hear a lot about ‘deconstructing’ Christians today.  And we face questions as well as casual but presumptively certain statements about God, Christians, the Bible and truth. How can we navigate these waters without losing our faith?  We are returning on Wednesday Nights to continue our lessons on ‘Foundations’.  We talked about the Authority of the Bible and the Character of God last September. Now we will pick up where we left off and continue through the Nature of Salvation as well. If we are informed and trained in these areas, the chances of us being taken off guard by a skeptics comments or even losing our way when we question our faith are greatly diminished.  We want to find solid ground to stand on in the current cultural discussions and debates, so join us as we continue to target a few places to find our footing. 
  • UNOFFENDABLE: Begins Jan 18th, Led by Pastor Dave In a world ready to be offended and angry, what if Christians were the most unoffendable people on the planet? In this 6-week class, we’ll discover that your right to “righteous anger” is a myth and if you’re willing to give it up you’ll start to live with less stress and more humility and gratitude. Participants are encouraged, but don’t have to, purchase a copy of Brant Hansen’s Unoffendable:How Just One Change Can Make All of Life Better
  • COMING SOON: Stay tuned for more details on these upcoming classes for all adults!
    • “The Panorama Bible Study” led by Mike Hartwell begins Feb 1st
    • Christian Sexuality Part 2 led by Pastor Mark begins Feb 22nd

BATTLE OF BATTLES: This Friday!
From the minds that brought you Fight Club, we present AN EPIC ONE NIGHT EVENT on January 13th at 6:30! Battle of Battles will be a night full of competition (Chili Cook-Off, ping pong, cornhole, arm wrestling and more!) and a conversation on one of the hardest battles facing men today. This event is open to men 18+ and free to join. Email Pastor Dave with any questions. (dave@hopechristianfellowship.org)

JOIN OUR SETUP TEAM:
The Facilities Team is looking for anyone interested in becoming a part of the Setup Team. This team sets up and takes down for events like our church picnic, baptism, ladies events, etc., and typically involves moving tables, chairs, and the like. If you’re looking for a way to serve that isn’t a long-term commitment, this is a great team for you! We just need a willing heart and a set of hands! Signup sheet is in the lobby, or email Mike Hartwell at 

mhredeemed@gmail.com for more info.

DIRECTORY DAY:
Joining our online, private directory has never been easier! We’re setting up a Directory Day on Sunday, January 29th where you can register to join our directory – including having your photo taken! Our online directory is such an important tool in staying connected as a church body. To be included, simply swing by the coffee room after either service. Registering only takes a minute! Contact Emily DiLorenzo with any questions. emily@hopechristianfellowship.org 

GOD’S GIRLS: January 16th
Here the women of Hope gather to share one another’s joys, burdens, and needs with the Lord and each other. Grow together through our fellowship gatherings, time in prayer, and studies on various topics in the Bible. All women are welcomed to join us as we encourage each other in our personal walk with the Lord. Join us the 1st & 3rd Monday of each month at 6:30pm. 

MEN’S BREAKFAST: This Saturday
Men 18 years of age and older are invited to our monthly Men’s Breakfast. We feature prayer, full participation study—all enjoyed with a great breakfast and terrific fellowship. Join us the 2nd Saturday of every month from 8:00-9:30am in the GoZone. 

GALENTINE’S TEA:
You’re invited to a “Galentine’s” Day Tea! Saturday, February 11th from 10:30am – 12:30pm. Leave the boys at home and come kick it with the best gals around for a celebration of friendship and love! We hope you can join us for brunch (tea sandwiches and finger foods), coffee, tea, and of course, sweet treats. We’ve got some great games planned and even a fun craft that you can share with a friend – you don’t need to bring anything but yourself and your girl gang if you’d like! Look for the event on Facebook and remember to sign up in the front foyer today so we can get an accurate headcount – don’t miss out!  Contact Dana at danaott@hopechristianfellowship.org for more information.

YOUNG ADULTS
Meets 1st & 3rd Tuesdays at 7:00
The Young Adults ministry at Hope is a group of post-high school through their twenties adults truly seeking to explore life, engage culture, and empower change while remaining ground in the Word of God. Any questions, contact Pastor Dave at dave@hopechristianfellowship.org

WHAT DOES IT MEAN THAT GOD IS LOVE?
John gives us one of the simplest definitions of God. God is love. I suppose this begs the question, what is love? For many this is equated to unquestioned acceptance, for others it means that we speak the truth even when others find it offensive. There are probably dozens of other definitions as well. Join us as we talk through what it means that God is love on January 17th.

HOPE YOUTH
YOUTH GROUP: Sundays 6:00-8:00
Open to all teens 6th-12th grades! Contact Pastor Dan Lein with any questions: danlein@hopechristianfellowship.org

LEVEL UP: Wednesday Nights at 7:00 

  • BECOMING THE BRANCH: 9th-12th Grades Ready to take your faith to the next level? Students will learn how to grow in the Lord and produce the fruit that he calls us to produce. From fresh ideas to practical application, this devotional series will be a great opportunity for senior high teens to dig deep and firmly plant their roots in Christ!
  • I’VE GOT QUESTIONS: 6th-8th Grades What’s the trinity? How long ago did God create the world? What’s for dinner? All questions we have heard tweens ask, and while we might not have the answer to every question, we want to train our Junior High students on how to ask those questions, where to look for answers, and what to do with the answers that we get. Junior Highers are a naturally curious bunch and we are so excited to direct that curiosity toward Jesus!

WINTER RETREAT:
From February 17th-19th Hope Youth will be worshipping God, learning more about him, and fellowshipping with one another! The retreat will take place at Mont Lawn retreat center, an exciting cabin complex in the Poconos packed with fun activities like an indoor basketball gym, archery, rock climbing and so much more! Admission is $100 and all 6th through 12th graders are welcome so don’t forget to invite your friends and family! Download a permission slip here.

HOPE YOUTH CALENDAR:
Parents, stay up to date with everything happening on our

calendar here!

HOPE KIDS
HOPEKIDS HANGOUT: 
All elementary kids are invited to join us in the GoZone on Sunday nights from

6PM-8PM for an extra dose of fun and Bible study. Just like on Sunday mornings, we gather together for games, Bible stories, and prayer—but with an extra hour there’s twice the excitement, bigger games, and more time to get to know each other! Our current series is a 12 week study on the New Testament. 

SUNDAY MORNING PROGRAMS:
We offer childcare and classes from our littlest Hopers to our 5th graders every Sunday morning at both services. Each classroom is staffed with friendly, enthusiastic, background-checked team members to ensure your child’s safety. Our WonderZone! serves our youngest children from infants through Pre-K, who are full of wonder about who God is!  K-5th graders gather in the GoZone! where we GO for God, GO for growth and GO forever.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT PROGRAMS:
We’re so excited to invest in our HopeKids! on Wednesday evenings, during our Level Up series, by providing classes for infants through 5th graders! Our elementary kids will be paired up with our preschoolers for a portion of the evening to work together on a craft, game, or activity. We can’t wait to see how God works in & through our elementary kids to serve, lead by example, and encourage our preschoolers! Your kids won’t want to miss out on these fun-filled Wednesday nights, engaging their faith and learning more from God’s Word!

For any questions about HopeKids! Ministry contact us at: kids@hopechristianfellowship.org 

Check out our social media (and more) here!