June 3, 2015
Praise and Prayers
We praise for another wonderful Sunday Service!
We give praise for Thomas and Peggy White as the celebrated 49 years of marriage on May 28, 2015!
Dana Hammonds gives praise for Dawson Hammonds, they celebrated his 13th birthday this past week.
Theresa Jones has praise for improved health of husband, Dale, who was in the hospital but has been released to go home.
Allan McDonald is asking for prayers for Vicki, his wife, she is waiting for test results.
The Brinson Family is asking for prayers for Leslie Ward during cancer treatments.
John Schaal is asking for prayers for his brother, Ted Schaal, he is going to the doctor Monday morning for test results.
Deborah Head is asking for prayers for Doug Wright, he is recovering from open heart surgery.
Fred and Bonnie Watson is asking for prayers for Rebecca Watson, she is going in for surgery Tuesday.
Chet and Colleen Vier are asking for prayers for Stephanie Gramber (niece) who has stage 4 cancer, also for Cathy Babb as she starts chemo and for Sharon Watson, whom was just diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.
Chuck and Diane Reagan are asking for prayers for Kevin Reilly (and family), his father passed away this weekend.
Sandwich Making Rescheduled
Natalie Smith would like to thank everyone who volunteered to help with the summer lunch program. Because there are not as many kids as expected during the first week of the program, we will be moving the day we make sandwiches to Wednesday, June 24. If you would like to help in anyway and have not already talked to Natalie please do so on Sunday or email her at email@example.com
Youth Funday to Six Flags
MUSIC CAMP "GODSPELL"
Save the Dates: June 21st-28th for our annual Music Camp. Music camp is where we combine a customized vacation bible school program to a major musical production. Rehearsals are 5:30pm-8:30pm Sunday--Friday. Saturday dress rehearsal 9:00am-12:00am Performances on Saturday at 7:00pm and Sunday at 10:00am. Cost is $50.00 per child and $25 each additional sibling. Contact the church office now to reserve your child's spot at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nicodemus by Night--John 3:1-17
Nicodemus is a hero to those who struggle with faith and seek assurance we are following God the right way. Nicodemus was a faithful Jewish leader following what he believed were God’s ways for God’s people contained in the Old Testament. Jesus’ ministry challenged his heart and mind. Jesus made him question the assurances of his faith.
We all question the assurances our faith gives us from time to time. We want blessed assurance that we are doing the right thing selecting a college major, a new job, or parenting our children. We, like Nicodemus, pray for some clarity and assurance that we are following God's will for our lives. Ultimately, we want assurance we are following the right religious faith itself.
Jesus says to Nicodemus and us, "‘Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.’” God's assurance come from being "born anew" or "born from above" or "born again"--depending on which bible translation you are using.
Christians argue about what being "born from above" means. Some say it's a special moment where you are assured of your salvation. You know you are saved. United Methodist’s interpret this “born from above” moment as the point where we find ab assurance of our faith.
Assurance of faith is the sense that we are following a righteous path. We trust that salvation is ours when we stand before God one day. We don't "know" about the status of our salvation in the technical sense. We have "faith" that we have salvation by trusting in Jesus. Jesus speaks to this aspect of assurance saying “the wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.’”(3:8) In other words, being “born from above” is an assurance of faith--we can't know it's substance but we see it's effects.
Faith in what? The assurance Jesus gives is what we call the gospel in short. "‘For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life."(3:16) Believe in Jesus and you will not perish.
Jesus asks that we trust him. His ways lead to purpose in life. If your assurance has been challenged, I encourage you to talk to Christ, like Nicodemus. Maybe in the dark of night when no one else is around. If you feel assurance lacking, commit to Christ. Renew your relationship with him. Cultivate the character of Christ within you. Assurance of faith will be yours.
Rev. Zack Martin