Hope Notes 1/10/24

January 9, 2024
Hello Hoper,
At one time or another, all of us have probably experienced being confronted with a weight limit.  Maybe at the baggage check-in, an amusement park ride, or even our own personal body weight. I’d be willing to be that we mostly go over the limit and have to find a way to get rid of whatever is weighing us down. It might be negative thoughts. Comparison is another weight that can cost you your sanity. Worries and fears are a common culprit. Each of us has extra weight that we carry around, and I am not just talking about extra pounds. I am talking about emotional and spiritual baggage that we are dragging along behind us. The Bible tells us to throw off everything. “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us….”(Hebrews 12:1) That means we need to throw off any extra baggage we carry with us and keep our focus on moving forward. We are to run the race marked out for us and who do you know that runs in a race while carrying a large amount of weight?
This is the start of a new year, and we need to make sure we don’t carry the baggage from last year into it. “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” (Isaiah 43:18-19) Lay down your burdens, your worries, your fears and throw them off! Give them all to the Lord. Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest….for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28 + 30)  Catch that? His burden is LIGHT. No excess weight to be found there!
Here’s to being lighter in the new year….Lois

SPIRITUAL CARE  

PLENTY OF POWER
(Acts 4:18-31)

How tired are you? The real answer to that question may have more to do with the pace of your life than your sleep patterns. Most people live exhausted because they are doing all they can to carry all that they can, believing there is no other way. But what if our lives need a power beyond our own?  What if this power is available to anyone? We’re going to look at a story of the early church today and see that they knew where to go when life got heavy and scary.  We can have that same power in our lives for everything we face today!

WEDNESDAY NIGHT BIBLE STUDIES: Starts tonight!
Join us at 6:30 for hot coffee and a sweet treat before heading into our studies at 7:00. 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!

  • UNSTUCK: How to Live in the Freedom Jesus Gives, Led by Pastor Mark  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!
  • CONQUERING CODEPENDENCY: Led by Pastor Dan beginning Jan 24th  Codependency can be easily described as the compulsion to fix everyone and everything. If you are familiar with that gut wrenching need to please others, or if you feel personally responsible for the feelings of others, codependency may be something that you struggle with. This 8 part series, derived from Pat Springle’s Conquering Codependency workbook, is designed to put us face-to-face with some of the habits, mindsets, and attitudes that have kept us feeling trapped in our relationships and help us to see a healthy path forward through the freedom offered in Jesus Christ.

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

PARTNERSHIP WITH WOODBURY POLICE DEPT.
Starting this Sunday, we are excited to let all Hopers know that our local police department will be walking through our building on Sunday mornings on a regular basis. Our Leadership Team has invited the officers to stop by as often as possible during services so that they can be an extra level of security for all attenders.  So, don’t be alarmed if you see police officers at church. In fact, let’s make them feel welcomed and do our best to share the love of Jesus with them in every way that we can.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT TEACHING:
If you are interested in teaching a class for a Wednesday night study, please see Pastor Mark to begin the necessary process with our Elder Team. We generally have 3 different adult classes for our mid-week gatherings. If you are gifted or experienced in teaching and are willing, we’d love for you to use your gift for building up the body of Christ.

NEW TO HOPE RECEPTION:
If you are new to Hope within the past few months, our staff and elders would love to get to know you and your family more! Join us in between services on Sunday, January 28th for coffee & some sweets. Stop by the GoZone 2 classroom anytime between 9:45-10:45!

GALENTINE’S BRUNCH: 
Calling all Ladies! It’s time for our annual Galentine’s Brunch! This year our theme is “Love and Lattes” and we’re already looking forward to being together with the best gals around. Mark your calendar for Saturday, February 17th from 10:00-noon and plan to join us – feel free to invite your girl gang, too! We’ll have a yummy brunch, some fun games, a photobooth, and we’ll take some time to talk about the unrelenting love of Jesus. Our women’s events are for all women post-high school and up, so look for the event on Facebook and sign up in the front foyer today. If you’d like to bring a sweet treat to share, you’ll see a spot on the sign up sheet for that too! Contact Dana Ott for more information.

BAPTISM: March 20th at 7:00
Baptism is an important symbolic opportunity to declare your testimony, and decision to follow Christ, in front of the church body! We’d love you to participate if this is something you’ve yet to do in your journey of faith. To participate, you’ll need to attend two classes – Wednesdays March 6th & 13th at 7:00. Sign-up at the front of the auditorium now! Any questions can be directed to Pastor Mark.

WONDERZONE MIDWEEK VOLUNTEERS NEEDED:
If you’re looking for an opportunity to serve during the week, we are looking for YOU! Our daytime midweek ministries are growing and in need of help on once-a-month rotations with various shifts through the day — opportunities available on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, or Thursdays!  Some of our ministries involve serving preschoolers while others involve organization and preparation for weekly children’s programs. Serving in this behind-the-scenes way has a massive impact on our church family and makes way for continued growth. If you’re looking to get plugged in, contact Kara May today!

HOPE SHARE: 
Doing some New Years purging? Don’t throw it out – share it! Join our private Facebook Group for Hopers to share gently used items and request items they might need!

YOUNG ADULTS
Meets 1st & 3rd Tuesdays at 6:30 
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.com

HOPE YOUTH
HOPE YOUTH GROUP: 
All teens 6th-12th grades are invited to join us on Sunday evenings from 6:00-8:00p for fellowship, fun, and study! Any questions? Contact Youth Director, Dan Lein
OWNING YOUR FAITH:
In a contentious age of conflicting opinions and snappy arguments it can be difficult to know what you believe, but as you grow and enter adulthood it becomes more and more evident that, whether it is strong or not, your faith is your own, and no one else’s. In this series Hope Youth will look throughout the narrative of the Bible and see how God’s people have owned their faith throughout history and what exactly they had faith in. Through this teens will see and learn the power of ownership, in their work, relationships, and faith.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT BIBLE STUDY: Starts tonight!
On Wednesday nights Hope Youth jumps feet first into the Word of God and practices prayer and Biblical study. We are going chapter by chapter through the book of Psalms and hone the key skills of Bible study that will help teens read on their own for the rest of their lives! It’s a great opportunity to connect through the Word with fellow teens, recharge in the middle of the week, and grow as a believer!

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
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: Sundays from 6:00-8:00p
Come to HopeKids! Hangout for games, snacks, and Bible study! We’re digging deep into the Bible with our new series, “The Heart of God.” Each week we will be reading different passages from Scripture on a quest to learn more about the character and nature of our Creator, and reinforcing those lessons with activities and games to go along with it. If you have a K-5th grader in your sphere of influence, draw them nearer to God by sending them to HopeKids! Hangout!

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 

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