Hope Notes 12/27/23

December 27, 2023
Hello Hoper,
Christmas is already in the rear view mirror – can you believe it? Now the New Year unfolds before us like a satiny ribbon unfurling from its spool. At the beginning of anything, the possibilities are always endless.  There have been no endings, no completions, and no finales yet.  You have the chance to start fresh, make new habits, or get rid of old ones that do you no good.  Hence everyone making all those New Year’s resolutions! Yet I don’t know why we so feel we must wait for the New Year to do this!  God gives us a fresh start each and every day. “The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.” (Lamentations 3:22-23)  We don’t have to worry that what we did or who we were yesterday will change His love for us, or cause Him to pull back on His mercy and grace. The possibilities to receive His love and mercy are endless.  Every single morning is a new day, a chance to start anew. He is gracious enough to not only give us a fresh, clean start every morning but to also give us breath for another day. “The Spirit of God has made me; the breath of the Almighty gives me life.” (Job 33:4) What better way to start your morning than by simply thanking Him for that, putting your day and your life into His hands, and starting fresh with a new resolve to make that day count for eternity.  You don’t need to wait for the New Year to do that; our almighty Father gives us the opportunity each and every day!
Grateful for all He has given and all He will give in the New Year
LoisSPIRITUAL CARE  

LOVING GOD WHEN THE CUP FEELS EMPTY
(Psalm 23, Job 1, Job 40:1-5, Job 42:1-10)

The holiday season is a special time of reflection for Christians. Leading up to Thanksgiving we set aside time to meditate on the things we are grateful for and give thanks to God, and then as Christmas rolls around we contemplate the greatest gift God has ever given in the birth of Jesus. Yet every one of us has experienced dark times when it feels difficult to see what good things God has for us, and felt far away from God as a result. As we head into a new year, and we consider what changes we can make to do the next one better than the last, it is important for us to consider how to continue to love God even when those dark times come.WEDNESDAY NIGHT BIBLE STUDIES:
Starting January 10th, Wednesday Nights will be back! We’ll have HopeKids programs for all ages, as well as a study for Hope Youth, and several adult classes rolling out over the coming weeks, so be sure to check back for full descriptions! Join us at 6:30 for hot coffee and a sweet treat before heading into our studies at 7:00.

  • UNSTUCK: How to Live in the Freedom Jesus Gives, Led by Pastor Mark beginning Jan 10th
    People often find themselves living in patterns that are unhealthy or empty. We don’t mean to, but we somehow wander into habits that we can’t shake.  As Christians, Jesus asks us to follow Him, and that certainly does not include living stuck in sin or addiction. From fear and worry to substance abuse to gossip to bitterness or anger – we all know somewhere that we seem to always lose our footing. We’ll take 8 weeks in this study to look at what God’s Word teaches us about living free.  So join us and find out how you too can get unstuck!

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 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).

ANNOUNCEMENTS

BIBLE READING PLANS: Out now!
We know that one of the best ways to deepen our faith and accelerate our relationship with God is by reading His word! Bible study is an important value to us, so we’re providing you with a few resources as you head into the new year! Check out one of our bible reading plans in the lobby. We have a bible in a year plan, plus two curated plans put together by Pastor Mark available on bookmarks. Or download a plan here!SERVE IN OUR PRODUCTION BOOTH:
Are you interested in serving in our Production Booth? If so, we need you! Our worship ministry isn’t just the stage team, it includes gifted and trained folks who faithfully serve behind the scenes as well. Currently, we have a few gaps that need to be filled and we’re hoping YOU might be interested in getting involved. There are roles on the Media Team (projecting lyrics and scriptures), the Broadcast Team (live streaming to our social media platforms) and on our Sound Team (mixing and running sound). If you have some background or experience but have been on the fence, this is the time to jump in! Even if your experience is limited, we’d love to have a conversation with you, to train you, and to explore this opportunity to serve in this powerful and vital ministry! Please contact Dana Ott for more information at danaott@hopechristianfellowship.org or fill out a Volunteer Card today.

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 Brian & Wendy Ball at briwensean@aol.comJANUARY 2ND: New Year, New Series!
You won’t want to miss our new series, “Dinner with Jesus.” We will enjoy a meal together each meeting, followed by a discussion centered on what happened around the meals in the Gospel. Start the new year off right as we dive into God’s word.

HOPE YOUTH
HOPE YOUTH GROUP: 
NO YOUTH GROUP ON NEW YEAR’S EVE
All teens 6th-12th grades are invited to join us on Sunday evenings from 6:00-8:00p for fellowship, fun, and study!

BEYOND THE WEEKEND: Winter Retreat
We’re going BEYOND next year for our winter retreat with the Beyond Weekend Winter Retreat! Join us and other youth ministries for a seismic youth event spanning an entire weekend! From January 26th-28th we will be heading to America’s Keswick for a faith and fellowship filled weekend! Live worship and Bible centered teaching anchor a weekend full of fun events and activities. Whether you’re enjoying the indoor pool, hot tub, sauna, or any number of the sport and video game tournaments throughout the weekend you’ll have a blast and make friends! Normally admission is $100 per student but Hope Youth wants to make it possible for everyone to go! That’s why we’ll pay half of every students’ admission fee! For just $50 any student between 6-12th grade can join us on this awesome weekend! Download the permission slip for the Beyond the Weekend retreat, print it out and return it to Youth Director Dan and we will see you there!

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

JOIN OUR TEXT THREAD:
Stay in the loop for all of the most important notifications! Text “”hopeyouth” to (856) 420-6078 to start receiving updates this week!

HOPE KIDS
PAJAMA DAY: This Sunday! 
December is always full of holiday fun as we learn about the birth of our Savior!  To close out this month and celebrate all we’ve learned, we invite all of our HopeKids! children and volunteers to wear their favorite PJs on New Year’s Eve during Sunday services!

HOPEKIDS! MOVE UP: January 7th
Every year on the first Sunday of January something amazing happens—our Kindergarteners transition from the WonderZone to the GoZone for the first time, and our 6th graders transition from the GoZone to church in the auditorium.  If you see a new young face in the auditorium with you, say hello! And if you see a little one wearing a GoZone sticker, congratulate them on their first day!

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.

HOPEKIDS! HANGOUT: Resumes January 7th
How can I discover who God really is? How can I get a slice of pizza and play some basketball? The answer to both of these questions is by coming to HopeKids! Hangout on January 7th from 6:00-8:00pm to kick off the new year and our new series, “The Heart of God!” If you’ve got K-5th graders in your life, you won’t want them to miss a single Sunday night of us opening God’s word and digging into who He is—so that we can know and love Him more!

WEDNESDAY NIGHTS IN THE GOZONE:
Wednesday night programs are starting back up on January 10th, and we have exciting plans for our GoZone (K-5th) friends! Each week we will be looking back at our Bible story from Sunday morning in a new way and doing fresh activities to reinforce our monthly theme. Plus, we’ll be storing God’s Word in our hearts by learning and practicing a new Bible verse every week—so you won’t want your kids to miss a single Wednesday!

WEDNESDAY NIGHTS IN THE WONDERZONE:
Our Wednesday WonderZone programs will be up and running again beginning January 10th! The Nursery team is excited to love on your little ones (0-2), while our Preschool (3-5) team dives into an Alphabet Scripture Memory study! Every week they will learn a new Bible Verse, and each week they return with their verse memorized, they’ll earn a letter to attach to their Scripture Sash! Your kids will want to join us every Wednesday night to plant God’s Word in their hearts, earn all of their letters, have fun building a foundation of faith, and even have a chance to connect with our GoZone kids every week!

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