“LIVING AND SHARING THE GOSPEL”
November 25, 2018
– Call To Worship –
“I Sing Praises To Your Name”
“God Is The Strength Of My Heart”
“Standing On The Promises”
Prayers of Intercession
‘Strength In the Struggle’
“He Who Began A Good Work In You”
Worship God in Spirit and Truth
Grow in His Grace and Knowledge
Share the Love and Hope we have in Christ.
Grace Communion International – We are an international Christian fellowship, on mission with the Father, Son and Spirit, living and sharing the gospel in ways that birth all kinds of churches, for all kinds of people, in all kinds of places. As an international Christian fellowship, we have about 50,000 members formed into 900 churches spread across 100 countries.
Weekly News Letter
For GCI Churches in Central Indiana From Pastor David ~ November 25, 2018
From Pastor David
I hope that all of you had a marvelous and wonderful day of Thanksgiving – a special day where we gave thanks to our gracious God. Jonnie and I want to thank all of you for your prayers that my sister and mom could make it over to our home for Thanksgiving. THEY DID! Mom enjoyed a wonderful day and so did we for the 5 1⁄2 hours they stayed. Now we are hoping for their coming over for Christmas…though we are well aware that her health and fluid build-up could necessitate another hospital stay before then. Thanks in advance for your past and continued prayers.
June Perry with her beloved grand dogs Kalani (L) and Makena (R)… at David & Jonnie’s home on Thanksgiving 2018
Our kitchen remodeling is almost done. Just two items remain: door & drawer pulls/handles; and the backsplash. Then I have to install shelving in the pantry and paint the office.
Christmas Wishes For Our Haiti Sister Church
By December 9, please take time to write special Christmas wishes to our brothers & sisters in Haiti. Those in Hope and Terre Haute can do this at church and then email them to me. Those in Lafayette area, please just email your Christmas wishes & blessings for Haiti, to me firstname.lastname@example.org This is a wonderful way of letting our dearly loved brothers and sisters know we are remembering them and love them.
Janis Beck (Laf) ~ Dec. 3
Jesus wants us to allow “His Light of Hope” to shine out through us to others. Jesus, through His birth, life, death, resurrection and ascension, has literally transformed the lives of every man, woman, and child for the rest of human history- whether they realize it or not. THAT is why we celebrate Christmas.
There is only ONE REASON that we celebrate Christmas and that is to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! It is right and good that we take time each year to remember that blessed event. It was foretold by the prophets of old. It is a well-documented, historical event chronicled in the Gospels and supported by the historians of that day. The Incarnation is easily the GREATEST EVENT IN HUMAN HISTORY! His life would literally transform the lives of every man, woman, and child for the rest of human history!!! THAT is why we celebrate the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
from Pastor David
This Sunday is the official beginning of Advent…the first Sunday of Advent. The traditional theme of the first Sunday of Advent is HOPE. The focus of this day is on the Assurance of the Blessed Hope that because of Jesus’ 1st Coming, his 2nd Coming will indeed happen. What a glorious concept!
Jesus’ 2nd Coming will enthrone Him as the King of this earth, truly letting everyone know that they are INCLUDED in His Life & Love. All will be given a chance to either accept His free gift of His Life & Love, or refuse it. This Christmas season, let’s rejoice in our INCLUSION in God’s glorious plan of making known the “Indescribable Free Gift of Salvation” for everyone.
That is EXACTLY what the Christmas season is all about – a reminder of God’s coming to this earth to provide the free gift of salvation for every human who has ever lived, is living and will live on this earth until the return of Jesus as King. He offers them His life and love in hopes that they will accept it and become reality in their lives. He brings His LIGHT of Hope into their darkness.
Go Tell It On The Mountain & Everywhere – That Jesus loves Everyone! You are loved & deeply appreciated ~ ~ Pastor David ~
Speaking Of Life
Some of you see this at church, but many don’t. If you have Internet, Speaking of Life is accessible at https://www.gci.org/videos/media- speaking-of-life/.
The wonder of the Incarnation
This “From the President” letter is by Joseph Tkach, Chairman, GCI Board of Directors.
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Advent, which spans four Sundays (starting on December 2 this year), is a season of preparation for Christmas. During Advent we ponder the marvels of Jesus’ multiple “comings” (advent means coming). One of those marvels is the Incarnation by which the omnipresent God came even closer to us in the person of the God-man Jesus. As Luke proclaims, because Jesus has come, “nothing is hidden that will not become evident, nor anything secret that will not be known and come to light” (Luke 8:17, NASB).
I like Luke’s use of “come to light”—it’s an idiom that points to the reality that with the coming of the incarnate Son of God to earth, things previously hidden about God and humanity are now revealed.
To see physically, there must be a source of light and the same is true spiritually. The light that gives spiritual sight is Jesus—the light of God for the world. The apostle Paul puts it this way:
For God, who said, “Light shall shine out of darkness,” is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. (2 Cor. 4:6, NASB)
The Greek word translated face is prosoponfrom pros (meaning to ward) and ops (meaning face or eye). It can also be translated presence. With the advent of Jesus, the everywhere-present though hidden God may be seen experienced) through the Spirit in a deeply personal, face-to-face way.
Though omnipresent, God cannot be contained by created time and space. Through the Incarnation God made himself personally present to us in Jesus. The Son of God first came to us through his human birth; since his ascension he is coming to us by his Spirit; and at the end of the age he will come again bodily. Christ has come, Christ is coming, and Christ will come again.
The season of Advent reminds us that God is not limited by the Incarnation. God remains Father, Son and Holy Spirit; and the Son of God remains who he was from all eternity, while assuming a complete human nature. Because of the Incarnation, our uncreated, omnipresent God is present to all created things while remaining God over all things.
[T]he Son of God, who was divine before the Incarnation, remains divine even while being with us in the human person of Jesus. As affirmed in the Chalcedonian Creed, Jesus is one person with two natures. Jesus was, is, and forever will be, fully God and fully human. My mind boggles contemplating that reality. Though I cannot fully comprehend it, Advent reminds us that God the Son came from eternity and stepped into created time and space to be with us. In Institutes of the Christian Religion, John Calvin puts it this way:
For even if the Word in his immeasurable essence united with the nature of man into one person, we do not imagine that he was confined therein. Here is something marvelous: the Son of God descended from heaven in such a way that, without leaving heaven, he willed to be borne in the virgin’s womb, to go about the earth, and to hang upon the cross; yet he continuously filled the world even as he had done from the beginning! (Book 2, p. 53)
My mind continues to be boggled as I read what Paul wrote to the church at Colossae:
For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority. (Col. 2:9- 10)
As a baby lying in a manger, Jesus was still the omnipresent Lord, sovereign over eternity and all creation. Though he became human, the Son of God remained divine. As the author of Hebrews says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Heb. 13:8). While on earth, the incarnate Son of God lived a fully human life. Paul puts it this way:
Being in very nature God, [the Son of God] did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross! (Phil. 2:6-8)
The incarnate Son of God made this great sacrifice in order to reconcile, regenerate and transform within himself our rebellious, corrupted human nature. That transformed human nature is then shared with us by the Holy Spirit who ministers to us the things of Christ.
The wonder of the Incarnation, which we ponder during Advent, truly is beyond our ability to fully grasp. Nevertheless, it inspires our adoration and thanksgiving. Advent, along with Christmas and the other celebrations in the liturgical calendar, reminds us that our omnipresent, triune God reached down to us so that we might be lifted up to him. Thank you, Jesus!
-Love and blessings upon you all this Advent season,
A Bold Reminder
From your friends at RayStedman.org
But I have written very boldly to you on some points so as to remind you again, because of the grace that was given me from God, to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles, ministering as a priest the gospel of God, so that my offering of the Gentiles may become acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.
You would think that a church that was theologically knowledgeable, able to instruct and counsel one another in the deep problems of life, and filled with a spirit of goodness and compassion, would hardly need anything more said to them. Yet it is to that kind of church that Paul addressed his letter to the Romans. He says they needed three other things.
First, they needed a bold reminder of the truth. I saw a man the other day with a string around his finger. The string was to remind him of something. The fact that we so easily forget things is somehow built into our humanity and I think one of the greatest proofs of the fall of man is that we have such a hard time remembering what we want to remember, yet we so easily remember what we want to forget! We even need to be reminded again and again of these great themes of the gospel. That is why in, Chapter 12, Paul says, You need your mind renewed by the Holy Spirit, (Romans 12:2). That is one reason to gather every Sunday: We need to have our minds renewed. We need to be called back to a vision of reality. Living out in the world, as many of you are, working every day among non-Christians, it is so easy to be sucked into the attitudes of the world around. It is so easy to get the idea that life is designed to be a pleasant picnic, that we can work toward the day when we can retire and enjoy ourselves. I find that attitude prevalent among people everywhere, but that is not what the Bible says. The Bible says we are in the midst of a battle, a battle to the death, against a keen and crafty foe. He wants to discourage us and defeat us, and to make us feel angry and hostile. He knows how to do it, and he never lets up. This life is not designed to be a time of relaxing. There are times when we need recreation and vacations, when we can slow down a bit. But you never see Paul talking about quitting the battle. You cannot quit, as long as life is there. So Paul tells us that we need to be reminded, day by day and week by week, that we are in a battle and that we have a crafty foe.
The second thing the apostle said the Christians at Rome needed was a priestly ministry. He told them, You not only need to be reminded of the truth, but you need an example to follow. You need somebody you can see doing this kind of thing. That is what pastors have the privilege of doing. They are called of God, not only to be an example of leadership, but also to be like a priest working in the temple, to awaken among people a sense of worship, a sense of the greatness of God
The third thing they needed is that, the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit. Every congregation needs this. We need to labor, to pray, to work, to counsel, to evangelize. But all of the activity of the Christian life is of no avail if it is not sanctified by the Holy Spirit, if it does not have in it that touch of God, that unction from on high, that divine wind blowing upon the dead bones and making them come to life. Paul is reminding them here of the ministry of prayer, and the need to remember that God himself must touch something — otherwise it is dead and useless. So Paul calls this church at Rome back to this tremendous reality. They had so much, but they needed this as well.
Lord, continue to remind me of my need for these three things. I continue to need a bold reminder of the truth, a priestly example and the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit. Thank you that you are more than willing to provide these things, In Jesus’ Name, Amen
Prayers for our Country and Pres. Trump
Prayers for the Body of Christ World Wide
Prayers for our Persecuted Christian Brothers & Sisters.
For Those Who Suffered & are suffering from California fires
Haiti – That peace and calm can return to the beautiful people of Haiti.
Barbara Wesley – signs of return of cancer, appointment on Monday, biopsy to follow. Prayers that nothing will be found.
Mary Coffey, prayers for healing, strength & encouragement.
Ron Barker — Al & Marilyn Talison, along with the daughter Michelle and family, requests continued prayers for Michelle’s husband, Ron, for complete healing from a recent kidney transplant.
Georgia – (Laf. area) Harriette Cox’s daughter, Georgia, is beginning chemo for cancer December 1.
Sue Durbin – (Laf) Prayers that her blood count remains stable… she has blood tests on Monday
Lucy – Anita Franz’s (Laf) sister: Recovery from gall bladder attack with possible upcoming surgery
GCI INDIANAPOLIS – Prayers as they seek the Lord’s guidance for a new church home.
Anthony & Jane Gachanja – (GCI National Ministry Leader in Kenya) They live in Nairobi, Kenya, Africa…prayers for blessings and protection as they minister to the beautiful people in the GCI churches in Kenya.
Hector & Paulina Barrero (GCI Mission Developer/Coordinator for Columbia & South America) For blessings, protection and inspiration as they minister to others.
Eugene & Lulu Guzon (GCI Mission Developer/Coordinator for Philippines) Prayers for wisdom, inspiration and safety as he travels, serving the Philippines
Kalengule & Nsama Kaoma (Lusaka, Zambia, Africa) Prayers for wisdom & protection as he oversees Africa as GCI Mission Developer/Coordinator.
Joseph & Georgette Franklin, Our Haiti Church & School – Prayers for joy, safety & blessing & provision. The school year is to begin late Sept.
Joe & Tammy Tkach & Greg & Susan Williams – Protection, safety, wisdom & encouragement
Prayers for Divine Appointments to touch others with Jesus’ life & love