Dear Church Family,
This Sabbath we will be looking at the theme of humility as it relates to hospitality. Notice these words of counsel:
Even among those who profess to be Christians, true hospitality is little exercised. Among our own people the opportunity of showing hospitality is not regarded as it should be, as a privilege and blessing. There is altogether too little sociability, too little of a disposition to make room for two or three more at the family board, without embarrassment or parade. Some plead that “it is too much trouble.” It would not be if you would say: We have made no special preparation, but you are welcome to what we have.” By the unexpected guest a welcome is appreciated far more than is the most elaborate preparation.
It is a denial of Christ to make preparation for visitors which requires time that rightly belongs to the Lord. In this we commit robbery of God. And we wrong others as well. In preparing an elaborate entertainment, many deprive their own families of needed attention, and their example leads others to follow the same course. 6T 343
I know personally how blessed I have been in those times when in visiting in some of your homes I have sat at your table and shared in something as simple as a bowl of cereal or some other small gesture. These most simple of moments are the moments that remind us we truly are family.
In the news:
- Young adults (18-35) are invited to Pastor Alex & Suranny’s home tonight fpr dinner and vespers February 3 at 6pm. Please RSVP by emailing Pastor Alex at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Families & Youth (Grades 8-12) are invited for dinner and worship tomrrow night, February 4 at 6:30pm following AYA. Please RSVP by emailing Pastor Alex at email@example.com
- Tomorrow I will be sharing the morning message which I have entitled, “Sabbath Lunch.”
- The Cross team will be hosting the Fellowship dinner this Sabbath following the worship service.
- AYA tomorrow evening will be at 5:00pm and will be led by our own GAA students. The vesper program will include the orchestra, various musical pieces, and readings. All are invited to attend.
- The English as a Second Language (ESL) class began last night at the church and will continue each Thursday evening in the room. Gloria Rodriguez is leading out and had 8 individuals come to learn. Here is a picture from last night’s group. They hope to grow the group in the coming weeks.
- There has been a tan car with a Washington County license plate in our church parking lot for over a week now. None of us in the office know anything about it. We have been told by the police that it belongs to a lady whose last name is Fletcher. The car appears to have been in an accident based on the damage on the passenger side. If you know more about this situation please let us know soon as we will have no other choice but to have it towed unless we hear from someone soon.
- Pastor Alex & I met with several Spanish speaking members Sabbath and we discussed plans for them to resume holding worship services in the youth room each Sabbath as well as to begin a midweek small group. They will join us for special Sabbaths as well as for quarterly communion services and will also have a member of their group appointed to the church board. Please join us in praying for God’s leading in this important work to develop a Spanish-speaking church in our area.
- I want to encourage those of you who missed Alistair Huong’s presentations last Sabbath to check them out on Audioverse. Also remember to visit his web page, savingthecrumbs.com where they have listed a great deal of practical advice on saving money. It’s VERY INSPIRING.
- Again, I want to encourage those who can to participate in Pastor Alex’s class on how to give a Bible study on Tuesday evenings at 6:30pm. There are three presentations left in this 5 part series. We have Bible Study interests to share with those who are interested in studying with someone.
- We are nearly half way through our 40 days of prayer. Remember we gather on the telephone at 7am on the weekends and at 6am during the week. It’s proving a real blessing for those of us who are regularly participating. All are welcome to join in as we pray for rain. Call (319) 527-9136 Access code: 848709#
- Remember that the Diabetes Undone class will begin this coming Tuesday night. This is a wonderful class that provides a great opportunity to folks who are trying to turn their health around.
- We will be looking at chapters 8 & 9 in Ezekiel next Wednesday at both the 10:30am class and 6:30pm class. All are welcome.
- Click here to read an article written by the 9th & 10th grade students at GAA about their clean up effort in Gatlinburg, TN. The article is currently listed on the homepage of our conference website.
- We must remember God’s servants in Washington. Senate chaplain Barry Black shared a message at the prayer breakfast this week in Washington and it reminds me that there are Daniels in the world today. These men of God need our prayers as they work with our nation’s leaders.
- This Sabbath we will include a letter and survey in the bulletin that highlights some specific needs as it relates to our fellowship dinner program. This is a very important ministry in our church and in the last few years we have seen some decline in participation causing us to have to cancel fellowship dinner many times throughout the year. We also recognize that there has been some confusion on what to bring for fellowship dinner and the like. Please read the letter in this week’s bulletin and fill out the survey so we can continue and strengthen our fellowship dinner program.
- We received a call from someone this week who didn’t identify themselves but simply asked that we pray for them, that they might overcome their addiction to chewing tobacco. Please lift this person up in prayer.
- Parenting Principles: I read the following counsel this week and we discussed it as a family. Perhaps it will prove a blessing to you and your family too:
Fathers and mothers, … teach your children that they must be subordinate to law. Do not allow them to think that because they are children, it is their privilege to make all the noise they wish in the house. Wise rules and regulations must be made and enforced, that the beauty of the home life may not be spoiled.
Parents do their children great wrong when they allow them to scream and cry. They should not be allowed to be careless and boisterous. If these objectionable traits of character are not checked in their early years, the children will take them with them, strengthened and developed, into religious and business life. Children will be just as happy if they are taught to be quiet in the house. CG 97
Blessings as you prepare for the coming Sabbath! I look forward to worshipping with you in the morning!
In His Service,