Northeast Community News – October 22, 2013
Dear friends and family,
I wrote God was on the move again (or should I say ‘still’ and I just noticed?) in the opening paragraph in our Northeast News last week and these words seem even more appropriate this week, Amen? Amen! God began challenging me to let Him lead our service last week about the same time 10 of our ladies went to the Come to the Fire women’s conference, a gathering of women from all over the country who met to worship God and encounter the power and freedom of the Holy Spirit.
At first, I resisted wondering “Is this really from you God?” and “What might others think?” The first, a healthy question, is something we all should seek God to answer, but the second question comes straight out of the pit of hell. The Apostle John wrote:
“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love” (1 John 4:8) and it is this Apostle who wrote 10 verses later, “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment” (1 John 4:18a).
After the ladies returned, Janie began creating the PowerPoint in the Sanctuary for and I found her weeping while listening to the song, “Break Every Chain.” She told me she could turn it off but I stopped her sensing this was the answer from God I had been seeking. Immediately I began to weep, too, the Holy Spirit began to speak to my heart and God’s prompting became crystal clear! We would let our ladies who had been to the Fire lead us into the presence of the Fire right here! But I was fearful!
Janie tenderly spoke to me about letting God lead the worship service and in her voice I discovered God’s confirmation! Everything I had planned had to go! The fear, the worry, the anxiety was really the Evil One trying to stop God’s movement! (He did not win!!)
Naretta handed out paper chains to everyone who came and Janie had felt led to bring pieces of metal chain for each of the ladies to wear. After a few words of welcome, we immediately played a video of the song, “Break Every Chain.”
The opening words are:
There is power in the name of Jesus,
There is power in the name of Jesus
There is power in the name of Jesus
To break every chain; Break every chain; Break every chain
Immediately after the song the 10 ladies came up wearing their chains and shared their testimonies! One by one they spoke of the power of Jesus to set them free and laid their chains on the altar. What humility, what power, what grace! God had anointed each one! (You really need to get a copy of the service! – Ask Theo!)
From their testimonies God led us to examine Isaiah 43:1-3a. Unbelievable! It was a message to the Israelites who had been in bondage! The message? The God who knows us has taken the initiative to redeem us, provide a ransom for us (Jesus) and is actively drawing us through the Holy Spirit from far flung and sinful places to be set free! As the song had proclaimed “there is power in the Name of Jesus to break every chain!”
The question was and is, “Would we, will we let Jesus break our chains?” From our message, God prompted us to ask Pastor Amy, Irene, and Janie to come stand before the altar with anointing oil, play the video again, and ask if some might want to bring their symbolic paper chain to Jesus and ask Him to break it? Or want to confess something to the three ladies and be anointed or ask them to pray? Or might just want to bring their chain to Jesus by kneeling at the altar in prayer? Did anyone respond? Well, I did!
In fact, Theo told me about 2/3rds of the 69 gathered responded! It was a movement of God! Tears were shed – prayers were spoken – chains were broken – freedom found – lives were restored – and hugs were freely offered as God came and moved among His people. “There is power in the Name of Jesus – to break every chain.” Glory, Hallelujah!
The “Break Every Chain” song concludes: There’s an army rising up - There’s an army rising up - There’s an army rising up - To break every chain!
And so from an altar of grace freed from bondage with faces shining in Jesus we moved into the parking lot ‘as an army rising up’ to welcome, greet, and love our community! Dan Pratt estimated we met with 180 people! Let’s continue praying God gives us more opportunities to share what Jesus has done for us so their chains will be broken, too!
Thank you to everyone who helped with the Fall Festival! From sign creators, to flyers, to invitations, to rides offered, food prepared, tables and chairs set up and torn down, to folks working booths, to folks making donations for prizes, it really took a COMMUNITY to invite and welcome a COMMUNITY! You did it! You were the hands and feet of Christ! I’ll write more about this next week, but in the meantime thank you and God bless!
WED. NIGHT PRAYER MEETING AND ADULT BIBLE STUDY AT
We changed the format of the adult Bible study! While we still examine God’s Word, we are now singing and praying first to give us enough time to pray! Sometimes this means we need two weeks to finish a lesson and that is ok! This week we continue our study on the fruit of the Spirit by examining Matthew -35 and patience!
Blessings! Pastor Dan
Come to the Fire – A few thoughts from Pastor Amy
Last weekend, I went with our ladies to the Come to the Fire women’s conference in Holland, MI. As most of you know, this conference impacted us so much that we brought our fire home to share with you all during our service.
All of our ladies had powerful testimonies of God meeting them and breaking chains of fear and other bondage during the conference. It was powerful to see all of our ladies crying out to Jesus and praying together. I encourage you to get a copy of Sunday’s service from Theo so that you can hear their words for yourself.
As for me, I stand amazed at the way God continues to show up and show off. God continues to deal with me in new and surprising ways. This weekend God decided to break some of my chains too, chains of fear, of confusion, of people-pleasing, of trying to do everything just right. God reminded me that the old has gone, the new has come, and it is once again, for me, another fresh season of newness in Him.
One of many favorite things I took home with me, was what Beth Coppedge had to say about living holiness, and how there is no greater freedom from chains than living holiness. But what is holiness, really? She said simply, “Holiness is when I give God ALL of me…and in return, I get ALL of Him.”
There is no greater freedom than when we throw our arms up, no holding back, no areas not under His authority, no secret chambers of our heart which He does not have access. We give Jesus all of it, and He gives us all of Him. This is freedom. Thank you Lord for continuing to show up and transform your people! May the fire lit in our hearts stay kindled, and spread into the lives of the people around us. With love, Pastor Amy
Hello from Pastor Amy, your Associate Pastor/Administrative Secretary
My office hours vary on Tuesdays, so if you need to see me, just call! My responsibilities also include preparing our weekly program, so if you have an event that you would like to put in the program or newsletter, or a prayer request to publish, please contact me!
Also, we have a long, ongoing list of prayer requests. Please keep me updated. Requests will be pulled from the newsletter & program after three weeks.
NEWS AND EVENTS
Public Neighborhood Meeting – Paving Project Spring/Summer 2014
The City of Grand Rapids will be hosting a neighborhood meeting to discuss a major construction project coming up in the Spring/Summer of 2014. The city plans to resurface Fuller Avenue from Michigan to Race Street, and from Malta to Leonard. Project staff will be available at this meeting to answer your questions and address concerns. The meeting takes place on Thursday October 24th @ at the church.
You can also email your questions to city employee Breese Stam at firstname.lastname@example.org
Potlucks on Last Wednesday Night of the Month!
On the last Wednesday night of every month, we gather for dinner and fellowship at . Bring a dish to pass and invite friends or family to join us for good food and conversation. Regular Bible study follows at it’s regular time of . Please note we do have Youth Group and Nursery Coverage nights. Talk to Julie Orban to help setup or cleanup the potluck. Next dinner: Weds
Calvin Cross Country – Did you know?
Yes we are a little late on this report, but did you know that Calvin’s cross country team finished sixth overall and third among small colleges at the Michigan Intercollegiates hosted by Hillsdale College just over a week ago (October 13)? Our very own Jonathan Gingrich took 8th place in the 8k. Take time to congratulate him and ask him about his other successes as a runner!
Here is a link to the article about Michigan Intercollegiates: http://www.mlive.com/
smallcolleges/grandrapids/ index.ssf/2013/10/calvin_ cross_country_teams_com.html
First Chinese Lunch November 01st
On the first of every month, everyone is invited to the Alpine Hibachi located behind the Target for lunch. The group meets at and everyone is welcome to bring friends or family. The food is cheap and delicious, and the conversation is even better. Talk to Tracy Tamm with questions, see you there!
Family Church/Communion Sunday November 3rd
Each first of the month, we celebrate the sacrament of Communion during our worship service. On this special day, we keep our children in service, and there is no children’s church. This gives our children and our workers the opportunity to participate in the Lord’s Supper. Have a child who wants to help hand out programs, usher, or be involved in our service in some other way? Talk to Pastor Amy!
MORNING PRAYER MEETINGS
Come pray with us mornings! Everyone is invited to join us for an hour of prayer. We all know many who need Jesus, and many who have other needs. We believe that prayer really does change things, and God really does love the world – especially those who don’t know Jesus yet! Who could you be praying for? It is a midweek blessing and encouragement to join with other believers in prayer! See you !
Craft and Scrapbooking Weekend at Indian Lake!
This weekend is just for ladies and takes place from . The cost is $25 per day which includes a table, meals, games, prizes, snacks, and devotion time. Lodging costs vary. More details at www.nazcamp.org
Indian Lake Nazarene Camp 2014 Summer Dates!
Here are confirmed dates for family festival, camp meeting, and camps for kids and teens in 2014. We will publish these dates again, but thought you might like to plan ahead.
2014 JUNE Confirmed Dates
16 - 20 Middle School Camp
23 - 27 High School Camp
30 - Discovery Camp
2014 JULY Confirmed Dates
4 - 6 Family Festival
7 - 11 Boys/Girls Camps
12 – 20 District Centennial Celebration Events
Homecoming Worship Service
13 - 14 District Assembly
14 - 20 Family Camp
Night Potluck Dinner @ , Bible study follows
First Chinese Lunch Hibachi Alpine
/Family Church – NO Children’s Church Communion