Hope Notes 02/14/2024

February 14, 2024
Hello Hoper,
Happy Valentine’s Day Hopers! I was at the library with my grandson and he spied a fancy Valentine arrangement. He asked me what it was and I told him it was for Valentine’s Day. ‘What’s that?’ he inquired. I explained that it was a day to celebrate the people we love. He then proceeded to pick out a sticker and place it carefully on my hand…..’Because I love you’. This Grammy’s heart just melted.  Isn’t that the way with loving and feeling loved? It causes something in our hearts to soften and expand. As sweet and heart expanding as that moment was, it was nothing compared to the love our heavenly Father has for us. “How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!” (1 John 3:1) Knowing and receiving God’s love for us should cause our hearts to nearly explode! In fact, we only have the ability to love because He loved us first! “We love because he first loved us.” (1 John 4:19) That’s crazy to think about, isn’t it? Another concept that’s hard to grasp is that our Heavenly Father loves each of us like there is only one of us. It’s hard to believe that with so many Christians in the world, God could have so much love for just one of us! Yet Matthew 18:12-14 attests to just that: “What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off….” That little sticker on my hand was a gift given out of an unprompted love response. God gave us all an immeasurable gift of love – the sacrificial offering of His Son. “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that everyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16) On this Valentine’s Day, let your hearts be softened and expanded by celebrating those you love and remembering just how wide, how long, how high, and how deep our Father’s love for us is.
With a melted heart… Lois

SPIRITUAL CARE  

SUNDAY MORNING MESSAGE:
Led in Triumph (2 Cor 2:12-17)

Life is full of twists and turns. We face unexpected and even unwanted change all the time. In response, some of us live in anxiety and fear, while others work hard to control as much as possible. But what if the uncontrollable and unpredictable nature of life carries an important message for us? Paul says that his life is a reflection of the fact that he is not in charge of his own life. Instead, Paul sees the twists and turns as a reminder that Jesus is leading him and that his role is simply to follow. Could we find hope in what so often brings us stress?  Let’s see if Paul’s instruction helps us see what he does.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT BIBLE STUDIES: 
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 through 2/28
  • CONQUERING CODEPENDENCY: Led by Pastor Dan through 3/13

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

EASTER SUNDAY: Three service times!
We’re gearing up for our biggest Sunday of the year! And did you know our growth is up by 23% since last year!? Praise God for all the new folks coming through our doors! With that in mind, we are planning three identical services for Easter Sunday at 8:00, 9:30, & 11:00. Mark your calendars now and start inviting family & friends!

SPRING SPRUCE-UP: Help us get ready for Easter!
Join us on Saturday, March 9th at 10:00am to help spruce-up the outside of our church. We’ll be doing basic landscaping like weeding, planting flowers, and tidying up our property so that we’re fresh and welcoming for Easter! Many hands make light work, so sign-up in the lobby to help for as long as you’re able. Any questions, contact Ken Blythe.

LOST & FOUND:
Missing an item? Make sure to check our Lost & Found bin at the back of the auditorium right next to the sound booth! We’ve acquired a collection of items separated from their owners so be sure to grab what’s yours before the end of the month — after that, they’ll get donated!

COFFEE MINISTRY: 
Are you looking for a way to get connected by serving? How about jumping in on our Sunday morning coffee team? We’ve been growing these past few months and would like to offer coffee throughout the entirety of both services! We’re looking for 4-6 folks who might want to help out with our second service. All our teams work on a rotation and we’ll get you fully trained – it’s a super simple way to serve, but is a vital part of creating a ‘warm welcome’ here at Hope. Please fill out a Volunteer Card and mark it “coffee team” or contact Dana at danaott@hopechristianfellowhip.org with questions or 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.

HOPEKIDS! MINISTRY: Be a part of our growth!
Hoper, did you know that our church’s attendance has increased by over 20% in the past year? And this isn’t just in our auditorium – this includes our littlest Hopers, too! Our kids ministry has seen astronomical growth over the past six months and we want you to join us for this exciting next season in HopeKids! We have three main opportunities to serve: Sunday morningsWednesday evenings, and week days. If you want to invest in the eternal lives of our little ones, there is certainly a place for you! Join our team by filling out this form, and Pastor Ryan or Kara will be in touch with you.

HOPEKIDS DONATION BOARD:
Looking for an opportunity to support our HopeKids! Ministry? Check out our new Donation Board outside of the GoZone! This is an easy way to make a big difference in our children’s experience each week. Stop by and “shop” the board — choose an item to donate, grab a slip off the board, and be sure to drop your donation off in the HopeKids! baskets in the kitchen! Check out this donation link for ways to donate directly from Amazon!

HOPE’S FUTURE HOME:
We are on the lookout for a future church location and would love your help! If you have suggestions, resources, or information on a potential place for the future home of Hope, contact Bob Baumiester! We appreciate your leads.

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: 
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!

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:
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:
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