Dear Friends and Family!
What a wonderful day we had in the Lord, Sunday! One person has been asking us to pray for everyone who is missing and I’m not sure if he was one of those they were thinking of, but it sure was wonderful to see Harry K. back! I always find it interesting that some of you, like Harry, honestly mourn when they can’t be in church, while others seem to mourn when they do come! And there are folks like me who look forward to seeing everyone and mourn when you don’t come! If you weren’t in church this week know you were missed!
God’s message came to us from Matthew 6:5-13 and was titled, ‘Talking with God.” It was the third of ten messages examining the ‘basics’ a new believer needs on their journey of faith after accepting Christ and being born again. It’s a faith journey connecting our new birth with our eventual homecoming when we see Jesus face to face!
One of the key pieces of that journey is to learn to ‘talk with God’ through prayer. While there are many who could teach us to pray, in Matthew 6:5-13 we find the disciples asking Jesus to teach them to pray. While books have been written on what Jesus taught them, our message addressed just four of them. First, we learn prayer shouldn’t be about us!
Jesus declares, “…when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men” (Matthew 6:5).
A hypocrite is an actor who merely ‘plays a role’ and draws attention to him or herself. Jesus says don’t try to draw attention to yourself when you pray nor feel the need to use eloquent words or whip yourself up into an emotional frenzy or shout to impress others! Instead, when you pray be vulnerable, simple in speech, and speak from the heart!
Second, in His model prayer, Jesus declares our prayers should be directed to our hallowed Father in heaven. In Luke’s account, the Greek word ‘Father’ is translated as ‘daddy.’ While the Jews could not draw near God, through Christ’s blood on the cross, adopted children in the Kingdom may now refer to the all-knowing, all powerful God as daddy!
Third, though we do have unfettered access to our Abba daddy, Jesus teaches us when we pray we need to remember that our Heavenly Father is to be ‘hallowed,’ (that is to make holy or show great respect). While we may call God ‘daddy,’ our prayers should revere Him! This explains why Jesus teaches us our prayers ought to seek His Kingdom come; His will done and give thanks for providing our physical, emotional, and spiritual needs, too!
Finally, to pray as Jesus taught requires us to acknowledge our own limitations. How the Father must weep to watch His proud stubborn kids struggle and fall (repeatedly) instead of taking His hand. What is prayer? Childlike dependence upon God.
Are you there yet? Do you realize how awesome and loving your ‘Hallowed Papa’ really is? Are you ready to acknowledge your own limitations and take His hand? Maybe it’s time to come to Jesus and humbly ask, "Lord, teach me to pray!" Blessings, Pastor Dan
NEWS AND EVENTS
NEW ‘LADIES’ BIBLE STUDY STARTS MON, AUG., 15 AT 10:00AM
The ladies Bible Study on Daniel will begin meeting Mon. Aug. 15 at 10:00am with an alternative time on Sat., Aug. 20th at 12:30pm. Get your books before the first class from Mary W. and come excited to learn and grow in God’s Word! While the study and DVD presentations by Beth Moore are ‘geared towards women,’ Mary W. said they would be open to a few good men, too. Have questions? Contact Mary W. at (616) 337-4549.
CHURCH WORK DAY IS THIS SAT., AUG. 13 - 9AM to 12PM
Larry B. has called an ‘Official Work Day’ for Sat., Aug. 13! We need folks to help paint and scrape the church and parsonage and a variety of other things around the church! We need everyone’s help to make our church properties look their best! ??s See Larry B.
OUR NEXT NORTHEAST COMMUNITY POTLUCK IS AUG. 14 (THIS WEEK)
Our next Northeast Community Potluck is Aug. 14 after our worship service. So, bring friends, a stranger, and a dish to pass and join us downstairs for a time of food, fun, and fellowship! Willing to help? Bless you! Please let Cherry P. know! (616) 916-7595
OUR NEXT THIRD THURSDAY CHINESE LUNCH IS AUG. 18 AT 11:30AM!
Our next Third Thursday Chinese Lunch is Aug. 18 at the Hibachi Grill on Alpine. The food is good, but the fellowship is even better! Come, enjoy a great time to eat, share joys, concerns and even laugh! If you have any questions? See Tracy or Linda!
OUR NEXT MISSIONARY GATHERING IS AUG. 21 @ 5PM
Our missionary gathering is Aug. 21 at 5pm. Bring a friend and come enjoy a brief lesson on missions! After Sherry J. leads our lesson, we eat snacks, laugh, and chat (sometimes at the same time! :) So bring a snack to pass and join us at 5pm! You’ll be glad you did! Have questions? Contact Sherry J. She loves to text! (269) 932-8334
THE NEXT LADIES RENDEZVOUS IS SAT., AUG. 27 AT 10:30AM!
Cherry is planning the next Ladies Rendezvous for Aug. 27 and all ladies are invited! Please contact Cherry for more info or if you need a ride! Call or text (616) 916-7595.
WED. NIGHT BIBLE STUDY! COME BE A PART OF IT!
I know you’re busy and I know that you have many things competing for your time all week, including Wed. night. But, I need to tell you as your pastor you need to be part of some mid-week fellowship and study. Our culture is growing increasingly secular and Christians are being beaten down. Who is lifting you up and encouraging you midweek? A ball game? TV show? Doubt it! Wed. night has been the traditional time for a midweek renewal! Come, be a part of it and be blessed (and refreshed!)
CHURCH POSTCARDS ARE AVAILABLE!
Is there someone missing or would like to invite to church? Why not grab a few church postcards and send them out? A simple hand written note blesses everyone! You will find them on the table under the missionary bulletin board in the Annex.
COME TO THE FIRE 2016
We have received the following from the Michigan District! Please consider it:
We are excited about this year's theme for Come to the Fire: Restore the Joy
Isaiah 35 describes what will happen when God restores His Church. The once barren landscape will suddenly burst with joy!
"Even the wilderness will rejoice in those days. The desert will blossom with flowers. Yes, there will be an abundance of flowers and singing and joy! The deserts will become as green as the mountains of Lebanon, as lovely as Mount Carmel's pastures and the plain of Sharon. There the LORD will display his glory, the splendor of our God" (IS. 35:1, 2 NLT).
We long for the day when God visits His people once again. He will come in response to our prayers, and many of you have been praying. One dear lady said she has been praying and fasting daily since the last conference in 2014. I am grateful for each of you who have continued to pray. At the set time, He will come!
Recently I was reading some of the many amazing testimonies of transformed lives from previous conferences, and quietly said, "Jesus, You did that!" The Spirit whispered, "I can do even more." Our hearts' cry is for restoration to the body of Christ. Will you pray that the council will have guidance in planning an event in which God will send revival?
"Shout, and be glad, O Daughter of Zion. For I am coming," declares the LORD. (Zechariah 2:10).
Registration will be up soon at cometothefire.org. Aletha Hinthorn
GATHER BOX TOPS FOR NAZARENE INDIAN MISSIONS!
Thank you to everyone who is collecting Campbell Soup labels and General Mills box tops! While it seems small, the cash they generate really adds up! This program has provided PA equipment, computers, and even a 15-passenger van for Nazarene Sun Valley Indian School. Questions, labels and box tops should go to Fran S. and Sherry J.
DAILY DEVOTIONS – “REFLECTING GOD” IS AVAILABLE! FREE!!
“Reflecting God” is a daily devotional guide our church makes available free to anyone interested. The devotions provide a brief truth from the Bible every day. Reflecting God also has a section for reading the Bible in a year and praying for our missionaries! Feel free to take one! You’ll find them located on the table outside the sanctuary!
EMOTIONS ANONYMOUS MEETS HERE ON TUESDAY’S AT 7:00PM
Do you often feel nervous, tense, or bored…have trouble sleeping or sleep too much… experience mood swings or feel useless? You’re not alone. At an EA meeting you’ll find others who’ve been where you are and experienced many of the same feelings, but, they found help at an Emotions Anonymous Meeting! Need more info? Look for literature rack in the ‘Community Room’ or call Helen W. (leader) at 616-363-7347.
GUIDELINES FOR PRAYER REQUESTS
Remember, to keep our prayer lists current, we only place requests in the newsletter and bulletin for 3 weeks without an update. If you want to keep your prayer request in the bulletin or newsletter just keep filling out the tear off tabs and keep us informed!
Aug. 13 Church Work Day 9am – 12pm
Aug. 14 Northeast Community Potluck after our worship service
Aug. 15 Ladies Bible Study on Daniel @ 10am
Sep. 26/Nov. 13 Pastor Dan and Janie’s 7-week Sabbatical
Nov. 10-12 Come to the Fire (Nashville, TN