Hope Notes 02/08/2023

February 8, 2023

Hello Hoper, 
I came across this quote on Facebook and thought it would make an appropriate post since Valentine’s Day is fast approaching:  “Love is not written on paper, for paper can be erased. Nor is it etched on stone, for stone can be broken. But it is inscribed on a heart and there it shall remain forever.” (Rumi) It brought to mind the following verse – “This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel after that time,” declares the LORD. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.” (Jeremiah 31:33)  Now I don’t know who Rumi is, whether or not he’s a believer, or if he ever read the verse in Jeremiah, but I do think it’s interesting how inscribing something on a person’s heart is depicted as a forever thing.  God obviously set the precedent in His covenant with the people of Israel; He knew that the heart was the place to put something in order for it to be eternal.  We have seen that God’s law written on tablets of stone could be broken, and we know that God’s law written on parchment can be lost or destroyed. But when it’s written on our hearts, it will remain forevermore.  It will permeate our whole being; it will influence our thoughts, words, and actions.  In order to achieve this we need to read our Bibles daily, to pray and ask God for understanding, and to make sure we are attending church and Bible studies.  Let the Word of God soak into our souls and saturate us through and through. And remember, “A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” (Luke 6:45)
Thankful for our Father’s everlasting love…..Lois

SPIRITUAL CARE  

SUNDAY MORNING MESSAGE: 
Help (John 14:15-24)
Nobody likes to need help. We’d rather be the ones giving help than receiving it. But life has a way of putting us in the position of need more often than we’d like to admit. Can needing help be more than just an inconvenient truth? Can it be part of changing the world? Jesus seemed to think so as He talks to His disciples at the Last Supper. He gives the disciples a few promises that seemed strange and scary to them, but turned out to be the exact pathway to a having a transformational effect on their world. We need the same kind of help and it is available to us. How do we live in the power we’re offered?  There are a few simple choices we can make that let us step into the help Jesus wants to give us.

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. 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). 

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:

  • UNOFFENDABLE: Led by Pastor Dave thru Feb 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
  • THE PANORAMA BIBLE STUDY: Led by Mike Hartwell thru Feb The Panorama Bible Study gives a condensed overview of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation. Included is a timeline illustrated with drawings to give you a visual of the events.
  • CHRISTIAN SEXUALITY PART 2: Begins Feb 22nd, led by Pastor Mark & Pastor Dan Last fall, we started a series on Christian Sexuality diving into the tough topics of sex, marriage, and pornography – and what the bible has to say about it. Join us as we continue that conversation, this time addressing homosexuality, transgender identity, and the LGBT community. We’ll hear real stories from real believers who face same sex attraction and gender dysphoria and how they pursue Christ in the midst of it.
  • THE CASE FOR CHRIST: Begins March 1st, led by Mark Suloff 

VERSE OF THE MONTH:
Matthew 5:6-8
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”

ANNOUNCEMENTS

GIVING REPORT:
For the month of January, we averaged $10,128 which is above our annual target for 2023 of $9300.  This is a great start to our year and will allow us to begin considering budget adjustments after the first quarter. We are grateful for each person who gives faithfully and sacrificially. This year needs to be a year of growth in giving because our church is growing. Pray with us that every Hoper will answer the call to financially support our work together.

WONDERMOMS: New Group!
Moms of preschoolers (0-PreK) are invited to join us on the 2nd Thursday of each month for a group created especially for them! Led by Kara May & Emily DiLorenzo, we’ll have study, prayer, and of course fellowship and coffee! Childcare will be provided, so come and treat yourself and your soul. Our first meeting will be Feb 9th from 10:30-Noon. Join our Facebook Group and RSVP!

CHOICES OF THE HEART: Baby Bottles Out Now!
Help us support Choices of the Heart this month! Please take a baby bottle located at the back of the auditorium and fill throughout the month of February with any extra change. All bottles can be returned to the back table by Sunday, Feb 26th. For more information, or more ways to get involved with Choices of the Heart, please visit their website, www.choicesoftheheart.com. Any questions please contact Stacy Reid, sreid0905@gmail.com.

GALENTINE’S TEA: This Saturday!
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.

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 this Saturday from 8:00 – 9:30.

HOPE KIDS & YOUTH SUPER BOWL PARTY: 
On February 12th a team will be crowned Super Bowl champs and your family is invited to find out who here at church! In lieu of our normal Sunday nights, Hope Youth and HopeKids Hangout are joining up for an epic Super Bowl party AND parents are invited! We’ll be streaming the game plus we’ll have classic game day snacks, competitive challenges, and prizes! Join us starting at 6pm until halftime! 

HOPEKIDS! WORKSHOP: 

We are so excited to announce our first ever HopeKids! Workshop for all HopeKids! team members on Saturday, March 18th from 9:00-1:30! This crucial workshop will allow us to gather all of our teams, refocus on why our calling is so important, and get everyone excited and well-prepared for the work God continues to do in our growing ministry. There will be light morning refreshments, lunch provided, and essential information to fully equip us in serving the next generation. If you serve on any of our HopeKids! teams, please RSVP on Planning Center and join us for a day of fellowship and growth! 

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

OLD TESTAMENT VS. NEW TESTAMENT GOD: Feb 21st
Often the picture of God in the Old Testament can seem at odds with the Jesus of the New Testament. God is framed as angry and vindictive and Jesus is portrayed as all-accepting hippie. We’ll explore our perceptions of both God and Jesus and talk about how we can get closer to knowing who God truly is. Be sure to come early to enjoy our fry bar where you’ll be able to load up a plate of French Fries just the way you like them!

FIRST SUNDAY HANG: New starting March 5th!
Introducing another opportunity to gather as young adults! The first Sunday of each month we’ll be getting together for a simple hangout. Join us at the Hallahans (612 Westover Ct. Williamstown) at 1pm for some light snacks, games, and fellowship.

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

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! If you can’t afford the fee, contact Pastor Dan about getting sponsored by the church! Download a permission slip here.

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!

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!