Church Family Newsletter | January 7, 2022
Happy New Year!
It is great to be back from our trip. Despite the cold and rain, we had some wonderful moments together as a family. And we were so proud of all those that participated in the Rose Parade. They looked great in their uniforms, sounded fabulous, and shared the love of God wherever they went.
When we came home, it was back to chores, work, and school. Believe it or not - I love to vacuum and do laundry! (I just don't like putting away the laundry and dusting. Ugh!) But just as I was starting to vacuum, I noticed that it wasn't really picking up any of the particles in the carpet. I looked at the roller closely and noticed that it was jammed with all kinds of "stuff" that required some assistance from Gwyn in cleaning it out.
It occurred to me - the new year always brings the urge to purge - cleaning out the closets, throwing out the old, and replacing well-used (or ill-fitting) items with the new. You can have the nicest appliances, tools, clothes, cars, kitchenware, etc, but they still need to be cleaned and maintained on a regular basis. There's no point in having those nice things if they don't work!
I encourage you to take an inventory of what you have. Is it necessary to throw things away? Or does it just need to be restored?
"Restore" can be found in the NIV 114 times. It means to restore, renovate, or return back to its original position, place, or condition.
You may want to forget 2021, but God says this in 1 Peter 5:10, "And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast."
May the lessons learned make us wiser in this new year.
Major AnnMarguerite Jones
One of the side benefits of this Internet Age is that at holiday time it is super easy to send greetings and good wishes to those on the periphery of our acquaintance.
The flip side of that coin is that we are reminded of people with whom we have otherwise had no interaction for a year. Many of their messages are short and sweet and totally predictable, but occasionally a gem appears which leads us onto unexpected paths of thought.
So it was for me as the year closed and another began. Someone sent me a cartoon drawing with two people in conversation.
“What do you expect the year to bring?”
“What makes you expect that this year will bring flowers?”
“I am planting flowers!”
I was immediately reminded of the scripture,
“Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows,” Galatians 6:7, NIV.
Growing up I always heard this scripture quoted in a cautionary context, “What goes around, comes around” and “God is watching you!” But the “I am planting flowers” comment alerted me to the positive implications.
In today’s media environment it is all too easy to be depressed by the gloom and doom which collects mouse clicks or cable news views, but as Jesus followers, we can just shake all that off. Jesus said,
“…In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world,” John 16:33 NIV.
The really cool thing is that Jesus has given us His Spirit to live within us, so we too have overcome the world! Notice I used past tense (“overcome”), rather than a present participle (“overcoming"). It is true that we are overcoming the world on a daily basis, but only because it is an already accomplished fact! The reality that the world is the way it is is because they do not (yet) acknowledge Jesus’ victory and the liberation that comes with it. But that day is coming! (c.f. Romans 14:11 and Isaiah 45:23). If we are not experiencing victory over the world, it is not because the world is winning, it is because we are not claiming the victory in the Spirit.
We would do well to shrug off the negativity of the news of pandemics, riots, terrorists, shortages, and politics and concentrate on being salt and light in this world.
This is not a new thought.
Listen to the admonition of Paul to the church in Philippi nearly two thousand years ago:
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” [Philippians 4:8 NIV].
Let’s get planting some flowers!
It’s time to join the Christian horticultural society!
It may not be time yet for them to bloom, but with careful watering and weeding the display will be spectacular!
Now that’s a great expectation!
Blessings on you and yours,
Pics from Concord's Rose Parade Delegates
This Week's Schedule
- 9:30 AM - Praise Team Practice
- 10:00 AM - Corps Cadets & Sunday School Classes
- 11:00 AM - Worship Service
- 12:15 PM - Youth Music Practice
- 6:00 PM - Men's & Women's Bible Studies (women's online)
- 7:00 PM - Songsters Practice
- 8:00 PM - Senior Band Practice
- 10:00 AM - CAMEO: Guest Speaker from CCC MEDS Coalition - Zoom Only
- 12:00 PM - Wednesday's Word Bible Studies (men and women separate groups)
When: Every Sunday at 10:00 AM
LAUNCHING SUNDAY, JANUARY 16TH
Where: Prayer Room
We are going to relaunch the Sunday morning Prayer Meeting now that we have Pamela Johnson taking the lead. Prayer is such a crucial part of our faith and there is definitely power in prayer. This will be an opportunity to pray over the fellowship's concerns, a time of intercessory prayer, and a designated time to ask the Lord to fill our worship time with His presence. Please join her for this time.
"And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people." Ephesians 6:18, NIV
"I call on you, my God, for you will answer me; turn your ear to me and hear my prayer." Psalm 17:6, NIV
Bible Reading Plan & Devotional
Women's Bible Study
Tuesday nights at 6:00 PM and Wednesday afternoons at 12:00 PM
Printed copies of the material will be distributed so that you don't have to worry about printing off the study and readings each week. We will be exploring the splendor of creation and the significance of God's work in the lives of flawed yet faithful men and women. And while it tells of fascinating people experiencing transformational events, Genesis continually points us back to their God and ours, the Creator.
Divisional Junior Soldier Rally
Theme: "Training Day"
Date: January 22, 2022
Location: Sacramento Citadel
2550 Alhambra Blvd
Sacramento, CA 95817
Ages: 7-13 years old
The registration deadline is January 17, 2022. No fee.
Message Major Ann if you would like your child to go mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Territorial Holiness Retreat
Theme: Holy Living - "Set Apart" (John 3:15)
Dates: February 4-6, 2022
Location: VIRTUAL RETREAT (It is now being held virtually due to the rise in COVID-19 cases and the very contagious spread of the new variant.)
A good time of worship and study of the Word together. Commissioner Mark Tillsley will be leading the Bible studies.
Proof of vaccination or COVID-19 test required.
Registration deadline is January 22, 2022. No registration fee is required.
Register here: https://events.usawest.org/