Christmas Eve is finally upon us. Many of us have been traveling, or we will soon. Whether you’re the host or the one being hosted, Christmas time with family and friends is truly something special. In my house the presents have all been bought, the grocery lists are final, and we are coming to accept that our time of preparing for Christmas is behind us. If it is not finished, then it’s too late now! Now it is time to slow down. Now is the time to pause. Now is the time to remember and to reflect upon the life of the baby that was born to change our hearts and to change the world.
I hope, wherever you find yourself tonight, that you too will experience a silent and holy night. If you’re in town, join us at 6:30pm for our Christmas Eve service. It’s going to be excellent, and there is a surprise at the end of the service that you won’t want to miss. If you are unable to join us, we’ll be streaming the service live so you can watch it from anywhere. Just go to our church’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/forthelake at 6:30pm to join in!
And don’t forget that we still have worship on Sunday as well! On December 29th we’ll share in a service that is intended to help us refocus and recommit our hearts and lives to God in the new year.
Merry Christmas, and may you remember that you have been blessed so richly so that you might be a blessing to others.
Full Gospel Project
Our reading this week for The Full Gospel Project is Luke chapters 16-17. As you read this week, consider the following:
- Luke 16:14-31 is probably the inspiration behind my favorite childhood Christmas movie Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol (the Muppets version). In this passage, Jesus calls into question our motives, desires, and our relationship toward money. If you could sum up Jesus’ message about money it would end up as a question like this- what is more important, human beings who have been created in God’s own image or wealth and possessions that are created by humans? Do you hear the cry of Lazarus? Who is lying at your gates? Who is lying at the gates Faithbridge, who we can serve for Jesus’ sake?
2. In Luke 17:1-10, Jesus was teaching His disciples about what it means to truly follow Jesus by loving and serving others. Jesus tells them to forgive each other continuously. The rest of the exchange went something like this, “Jesus, we obviously don’t have enough faith, because we can’t imagine doing that!” Then Jesus said, “Guys, it doesn’t hardly require any faith at all.” What it requires is sincere faith- and we can’t have both sincere faith in God and difficulty loving, serving, and forgiving our neighbors. How often does your faith inform how you treat others?
By our Prayers…
Please remember the following people and situations in your prayers this week:
George Grateke and family – George passed away this week. No services are scheduled at this time.
Natalie Guzman – 1-year-old recovering from a liver transplant
Sigmund & family – Linda Johnson’s 11-year-old grandson, as he battles health concerns.
Christy McField – Debbie Geasley’s sister-in-law who has breast cancer
Marilyn Sherfield – Undergoing treatments as she continues to battle lung cancer
(To be included in this list, please reply to this email or fill out a prayer request card during the service on Sunday.)
Connect, Grow, & Serve
Covenant Bible Study
Pastor Andy will be leading the Covenant Bible study in 2020. Covenant is a study that is great for all stages of faith- from the Bible illiterate to those wanting to take a deeper dive into the understanding and interpretation of scripture and how it forms our Christian faith. Together, we will walk through the whole Bible in three 8-week modules (a total of 24 weeks) that will be spread throughout the year. The first module will begin on January 7th and the participant’s guide costs $30. Please let us know if you’ll plan to attend so that we make certain you have the materials for the study. For more information or to RSVP email Pastor Andy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ladies Bible Study
Mission Project – Join us on Tuesday, January 21, at 9:30 a.m. for another Prayer Bead making session. We use the prayer beads to minister to our congregation as well as others in our community.
Bible Study – We will resume meeting on Tuesday, January 28 at 9:30 a.m. with a Bible Study based on the movie War Room. This is a 5-week study that explores how the power of prayer can make an impact on all areas of your life. Sign up sheets are in the church lobby or e-mail Betty McAdams at email@example.com. This group is open to all Faithbrdge ladies and invited guests.
Wednesday Night Bible Study
Every adult is invited to join a book study beginning on January 8th from 7-8 PM. They will be studying the book, “New Testament Stories From the Back Side” by J. Ellsworth Kalas. Everyone is welcome.
Mark Your Calendars
Christmas Eve Service – Tuesday, December 24th, 6:30 PM – Our traditional candle-light celebration.
Jubilee Rising Concert – Sunday, January 19th, 2:00 PM at Faithbridge.