Church Family Newsletter | October 14, 2022
This week for Rooted we have been reminded that there is a spiritual battle going on around us. That is why we might be going through difficulties, feeling oppressed or depressed, "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." (Ephesians 6:12, NIV)
Satan is a liar and a deceiver. He wants to bring you down. Don't allow him! He is a fallen, created being and he cannot defeat the Creator! He wants to trip you up. He wants you to fail. He does not have any original ideas. He is not a creator. So, he will twist and manipulate the good around you to trick you into believing that you are not worthy or loved.
I am also studying the Divided Kingdoms (Israel and Judah) in the Old Testament. Currently, we are studying the life of the prophet Elijah. WOW! He did some pretty awesome and incredible things with the help of the Lord! An ordinary guy called to speak on God's behalf, drawing God's people back to Him through a showdown between the prophets of Baal and Asherah and God Himself at Mount Carmel. He was able to stand up again the evil King Ahab. (If you don't know this story or need a review, I encourage you to read it in 1 Kings 18.)
But soon after, Elijah feared the evil Queen Jezebel who threatened his life. (A scorned woman is NO JOKE!) He ran away, hid, and wanted to die. He pitied himself. He thought he was the only believer left. He provided nourishment, rest, and encouragement to keep going. God spoke to Him while in a cave - in a soft whisper - and not the powerful wind, earthquake, and fire that passed by. (1 Kings 19)
It is common for us, as God's followers, to feel depleted, lonely, emotionally, and spiritually drained after something spectacular happens in your life or around you. That's when Satan gets in our heads. When you start to feel this way, take a moment to stop, take inventory of what is going on, and hone in on God speaking to you. Block out the chaos, the noise, and the distractions.
Guard yourself with the Armor of God. "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes." (Ephesians 6:10-11, NIV)
For those who are struggling, hold fast to Him. God's got you!
“A person without self-control is like a house with its doors and windows knocked out.” Proverbs 25:28 MSG
I am old enough to remember when Elementary or Primary School was focused on the Three “R”s of Reading, ‘Riting, and ‘Rithemetic. Every day was spent in pursuit of vocabulary, fluency, legibility, and numeracy. My grandchildren find it quaint and amazing that I can perform calculations in my head that have them immediately reaching for a calculator, but of course, almost every child of my generation could perform the same feat. It is not due to superior intellect but rather because of a teaching style that emphasized these skills.
I said that “almost every child of my generation” has (or had) these skills, but of course, that is a generalization that doesn’t stand scrutiny. In my generation, there were still the slow learners, the dyslexic readers, those with speech difficulties, and those who couldn’t perform addition without the aid of fingers. These kids got “special” help, but often they were taken out of class to meet with a different teacher who specialized in helping them. Children are amongst the most cruel commentators on the planet and often this led to the “special” kids being marginalized and not well socialized with low self-esteem leading to a self-fulfilling prophecy of their lowered prospects in life.
For a time the pendulum swung far the other way and “self-esteem” became the primary purpose of education often at the expense of the skills that were previously taught. It is a conundrum of educational policy to get the balance right so that those who need help are helped with dignity and those who don’t are not held back in their progress. As you are reading this may I suggest you give thanks for the teacher(s) who made it possible for you to do so!
The Scriptures have much to say about self-esteem or what we think of our self-worth.
At the most basic level every human being has inestimable value:
“You are not your own; you were bought at a price.” (1Corinthians 6:19-20, NIV), and that price was the sacrifice of God Himself! Every life is one for whom Jesus died. There can be nothing of higher value!
When you interact with another person you are dealing with a priceless jewel in God’s treasure chest, and so are you! Any suggestion of worthlessness comes direct from the mouth of Satan and, as usual, is a bald-faced lie! I never hesitate to tell people that I am God’s favorite, and I truly believe it! Don’t worry, I didn’t say I was his exclusive favorite, so you are in the club too!
From such a lofty position of privilege, it would be easy to look down on those who haven’t yet appreciated their own value or are involved in a different part of God’s long-term plan. Such was the growing problem in the church Paul had planted in Rome and he wrote this advice to them:
“Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.” (Romans 12:3, NIV)
So once again we have a delicate balancing act, valuing ourselves and building up the value of others. A few verses further on, Paul gives this advice to the Roman Church:
“Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.” (Romans 12:10, NIV)
Yet another paradox of being a Jesus follower: if you want to live up to your personal self-worth, value others first!
As C.S. Lewis says: “Christianity is not about thinking less of yourself, it’s about thinking of yourself less.”
Or, to quote William Booth’s famous telegram: “Others!”
It’s what Jesus did, and we’re his followers are we not?
Blessings on you and yours,
This will take you to Jim Black's collection of articles since starting the newsletter.
International Prayer Focus
This initiative of turning our thoughts and prayers towards the same part of the world at some point in the same week is a beautiful way to unite us as a global Army family and I thank you for the commitment that you each give to this.
The Prayer Focus requests for October 2022. We will be praying for the following territories:
03 – 09 October 2022 Malawi Territory10 – 16 October 2022 USA Eastern Territory
17 – 23 October 2022 The Netherlands, Czech Republic, and Slovakia Territory
24 – 30 October 2022 India Western Territory
THE NETHERLANDS, CZECH REPUBLIC, AND SLOVAKIA TERRITORY
Territorial Leader: Commissioner Hannelise Tvedt
Prayer Requests from the Netherlands:
- Recent study shows that less than 50% of the Dutch population regards themselves as religious. Pray for wisdom and creativity to reach society with the Gospel.
- Pray that we find new ways of connecting with people building new faith communities.
- Thank God and praise Him for sending us new workers to bring in the harvest. Pray that we might be receiving more new Christian workers.
- Pray for the children's and youth work in corps and in our community centres. That we make room for a new generation to rise up and serve God in new and creative ways.
- Pray for our officers, employees, and volunteers who are passionately committed to serve the least and the last. Pray for their safety, health, and energy after two very intense years of Covid.
- Pray for the leading and dependency on the Holy Spirit and a brave heart to take bold decisions.
- Pray that the Dutch Government does not change the right for employees to be selected on religious background.
- Pray for safety and openness for employees in our social services as we continue our focus on Christian identity.
- Pray for the National Prayer Network which is entering a new phase. That it connects with separate prayer groups within the Netherlands that are active. That the National Prayer Network finds its way throughout the Salvation Army.
- Pray for our Roma community as we continue to develop this ministry.
- Please pray for victims of human trafficking and for discernment and wisdom for officers, employees, and volunteers who are involved in this ministry.
- Pray for the work that continues with refugees who have been displaced due to conflict.
Requests from Czech and Slovakia
- Pray for stronger cooperation between the social and fieldwork of TSA (Armada Spasy).
- Pray for more funds to expand the corps work in the Czech and Slovakia.
- Pray for government to support TSA (Armada Spasy) to develop social work for vulnerable adults and children in the Czech and Slovakia.
Czech Social Services:
- 1. It seems that Covid has not yet had the last word in social services, so let's pray for the protection of our staff and clients in difficult times.
- 2. During the spring we will be finalizing the launch of TSA work in Pilsen. We ask for God's blessing, patience and wisdom for all those who will be involved in the start-up of TSA services in the new city.
- Thank the Lord for the new callings He bestowed onto the hearts of people who decided to serve in TSA as officers.
- Pray for God's wisdom and obedience to His guidance in bringing men and women to Christ for salvation.
- Pray for the financial and personnel stability of God's given ministry in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
- Pray for children and youth so that they may find their spiritual homes within the Salvation Army.
- For new (additional) servants (servants according to God's heart) for work in Slovakia (both officers and teachers, social work ...).
- For the wisdom and revelation of where to open new kindergartens and subsequently churches. We ask for specific locations. (Our long-term vision is: establishing kindergartens for Roma children in their settlements, there are approx. 700 settlements in Slovakia).
- For the protection and unity of the team (so that the unity will last in the coming years, because we know that it is the work of the Holy Spirit and not ours).
- For passion, loyalty, and service in grace in the years to come for every servant and worker.
- For service in Bratislava - about open doors at the city municipality and a vision for the Corps. (The situation here is different from the other places where we serve).
Western Territory Staff Band Visit
Dinner & Rehearsal with Concord Band Members
Participated in the Saturday Concert
Staff Band Gentlemen
Proud of these young men part of the group
First time for these kids to sing with group
Sunday School, Corps Cadets & Jr Church/Nursery
Fun Outtakes of the Week
Dressed as a pilot for Trunk or Treat announcements
Will be featured in an upcoming New Frontier article
Bob & Verena Slous
Faithfully serving wherever needed
This Week's Schedule
- 9:00 AM - Praise Team Practice - Chapel
- 10:00 AM - Sunday School - Classroom 3
- 10:00 AM - Corps Cadets - Classroom 2
- 10:00 AM - Adult Sunday School - Library
- 10:15 AM - Time of Prayer - Prayer Room
- 11:00 AM - Worship Service - Chapel
- 12:15 PM - Fellowship Time - Fireside Room
- 12:30 PM - Youth Music Rehearsals - Chapel
- 6:00 PM - Men's Bible Study - Classroom 3
- 6:00 PM - ROOTED Small Discipleship Group - Hybrid/Library
- 7:00 PM - Boy Scouts Court of Honor - Classroom 1
- No Band and Songsters this week due to flooring installation in progress.
- 10:00 AM - CAMEO: Hopeful Harvest - Fireside Room
- 8:30 AM - Senior Day Delegates depart for DHQ
- Senior Day program starts at 10 AM and ends at 1 PM. Wear your "Aloha" attire!
- 3:00 PM - Estimated return from Senior Day
SATURDAY - Divisional Music Rehearsal - Suisun Kroc Center
- 9:30 AM - Del Oro Chorus
- 11:00 AM - Del Oro Brass
12:30 PM - United Lunch
1:15 PM - Divisional Youth Chorus
2:30 PM - Divisional Youth Electives (Band, Worship Team, Dance, and Drama)
3:30 PM - Finish & Go Home
Note: Participants in the youth groups should be age 13+. The Del Oro Brass & Chorus are adult groups, but those younger than 18 are welcome to participate so long as they also participate in the youth groups. Soldiership is not required for any of these groups. The last rehearsal date is November 19. The Del Oro Brass and Chorus will be participating in the Divisional Christmas Concert on Sunday, December 4, in Concord.
If you were unable to make the concert, here is a link to the recording.
Trunk or Treat Community Outreach Event
Please contact Major Willdonna if you would like to sign-up: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rose Parade Band & Timbrels
The deadline for a preliminary list of participants from our division is October 21st. All those interested must do/be the following:
- Age 16+
- Able to arrive Dec. 29 between 9 AM and 2 PM
- Depart January 3rd before noon
- Musically capable of playing/memorizing all required music
- Physically capable of walking 5+ miles
There are 2 options for participation.
Option 1 – Full member of the North American Delegation:
- Transportation to and from LA paid for by the participant
- Housing at camp and transportation around LA paid for by THQ
- Full participation in all events required
Option 2 – Parade Marcher Only:
- Transportation to and from LA paid for by the participant
- Housing and transportation around LA paid for and arranged by the participant
- Rehearsal attendance required to participate in the parade
In previous years, participants have been required to submit videos of themselves performing the music/timbrel routine prior to traveling to LA. There are no specifics regarding this yet but you will be notified if this is required. Those who are not able to memorize the required material will not be allowed to participate.
If you would be interested in this opportunity, please submit the following information to our Divisional Music Director, Daniel Prince (mailto:email@example.com):
- Full legal name
- Date of birth
- Home address
- Cell phone number (participant)
- Email address (participant)
- Parent/guardian name (for minors)
- Parent/guarding cell phone number (for minors)
- Parent/guarding email address (for minors)
NOTE: Territorial Youth Band members are invited to participate again this year. TYB members need to respond directly to Bandmaster Neil Smith's email correspondence.
Click here to share your requests. Requests will be prayed for in our Prayer Room and distributed through our Prayer Chain. Requests can be made anonymously.
You can make a tithe payment, give an offering, or donate towards the World Services fund.