Newsletter Week of February 10th

Pastor’s Piece

I don’t know if you’ve noticed this, but Jesus had a knack for doing the “wrong thing” according to the “righteous” Jewish people.  Jesus gets in trouble for spending time with sinners, adulterers, people who are possessed by demons, and he even got accused of being a glutton and a drunk in Luke.  The 4th chapter of John is essentially two stories about Jesus talking and interacting with people He (as a good Jew) wasn’t supposed to be associating with.  First there was the Samaritan woman, and then there was the Roman official- both were supposed to be considered enemies of “righteous Jews,” and Jesus loved them anyway. 

In our society today it seems that we’re as divided as we’ve ever been.  You’re supposed to either be “For” something or someone or you must be “Against” them.  But this isn’t the example that Jesus set out for us.  Jesus consistently reached across the aisle/border/division and extended love and grace to anyone who would accept it.  Join us Sunday as we explore John 4 and the Savior who calls us to cross the lines that divide us. 

Blessings,
Pastor Andy

The Full Gospel Project

Our reading this week for The Full Gospel Project is John chapters 4 and 5.  As you read this week, consider the following: 

1)     John 4 begins with a story about Jesus traveling from Jerusalem back to the Sea of Galilee region.  He takes the “shortcut” road through Samaria, which was a country of people who were descended from the Jews but were considered by the Jews to be unclean and ungodly.  Jesus then had a conversation with this Samaritan woman (who society said He shouldn’t associate with).  This was one of the longest recorded conversations that Jesus had with anyone in John’s gospel.  What does it say to you that Jesus spent so much time with an “untouchable woman?”   

2)     John 5:1-15 is a story about Jesus healing a man who had been sick for 38 years.  After Jesus healed the man, Jesus said, “See, you have been made well!  Don’t sin anymore in case something worse happens to you.”  Some have interpreted this as Jesus saying, don’t sin so you don’t get even sicker.  I don’t see how this interpretation aligns with Jesus’ other teachings about sin and righteousness.  What else might Jesus be saying?  Why did He warn the man not to sin?  What could be worse than being sick for 38 years?     

By our Prayers…

Please remember the following people and situations in your prayers this week:
Terry Albert –  Dan and Cindy have requested prayers for Terry as she recovers from cancer surgery and also battles pneumonia.

Marjorie Davis – Prayers for her health. Cards of care and concern can be sent C/O Scott Davis, 149 Oakhurst Dr., O’Fallon, MO 63368

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

Mmmmmm, Soup!

Join us this Sunday in the community room immediately following the service for a delicious bowl of soup or chili.  There will also be several other dishes to chose from, along with desserts galore.  If you didn’t have a chance to sign up, don’t worry we’ll have plenty. We hope you’ll stop in for a bite!

After the first “Date Night” in September we got a lot of positive feedback, so it is back in time for the season of love!  You are invited to join us with your spouse at 4 pm on Feb 22nd.  This time we will begin by joining together for a 60-minute workshop that will help you draw closer as a couple.  Then you’ll be sent out to enjoy a “Date Night” together.  Just like last time, there will be a conversation starter kit to guide you through your date.  Babysitting will be provided at church for those who need it.  No matter how long you’ve been married, this is a night you’re going to want to block off on your calendar!

REGISTER HERE for Saturday, February 22nd for our next “Date Night.” 

FOOD TRUCK MINISTRY

Mark your calendars now to participate in our Annual Food Truck Ministry on Sunday, March 8th.  This year we will be holding the event on a Sunday during our regular worship time so we can involve more of our members in this amazing ministry.  If you aren’t able to be here for the big event on Sunday, you can still volunteer on Thursday, March 5th unloading food and boxes, Friday, March 6th for event set up and box construction, or even Monday, March 9th for deliveries!  For more information contact Doug Beck or the church office, or just sign up in the church lobby. 

ASH WEDNESDAY SERVICE

We will be holding a short Ash Wednesday Service on February 26th at 6:00 PM.  Everyone is invited to join us.