God is near. That’s what we learned yesterday. God has come to us in Jesus Christ. He has entered into our existence, and He has lived the life that we could not live and died the death that we deserved to die so that we could have a relationship with the God of all creation. There will never be a moment in your life that God is not near. We’re entering the time of the year that we celebrate Emmanuel, God with us. If God has come to us, you have every reason to enjoy your relationship with God. I told you yesterday that the more invest in your relationship with God the more you will enjoy God. Let me encourage you to take time this week to enjoy God. Invest in your relationship with Him and watch how you grow in intimacy with Him.
Happy Thanksgiving! I know you have much to be thankful, and I know you are looking forward to spending this week reflecting on the goodness of God and giving Him thanks for His provisions in your life. Don’t forget that you are everything you are because of who He is and not because of who you are. Give Him thanks this week! We will have no Wednesday night activities due to the Thanksgiving holiday. Enjoy your time with family!
I’m looking forward to our Christmas sermon series starting this Sunday titled, “I Won’t Be Home for Christmas.” We’re spending the Christmas season exploring the first chapter of 1 Peter. This Sunday’s sermon is “Spending Christmas Away from Home,” and we’ll be studying the first two verses of 1 Peter. We’re going to be looking at what it means to live this Christmas with our hearts set on our eternal home rather than having our hearts set on our earthly home. I’d challenge you to read through 1 Peter this week. It will only take you about 30 minutes. We’ll actually be studying the whole epistle over the next few months. The Spirit of God has much to say to us about living for Christ in this epistle. It’s going to be a great study! Also, this Sunday, we will interview via Skype a missionary couple who is serving in Japan, one of the most unreached countries in the world. Make every effort to be with us Sunday morning!
This Christmas invite, invite, invite! Your lost friends and family members are much more likely to come to a worship gathering during the Christmas season than any other time of the year. Will you begin to invite friends and family to join us this Christmas season We’ll have a Christmas Eve service Thursday, December 24, at 5:30 p.m. Plan on joining us and invite as many people as possible. Let’s take advantage of this Christmas season for the sake of the Gospel.
This Sunday night we’re continuing our series titled, “Questions Skeptics Ask.” This Sunday’s question is: “Doesn’t science contradict Christianity?” We’re having some great discussions on Sunday night, and I’m hopeful that this series of studies will give you some ways you can engage unbelievers with the truth of the Gospel. Plan on joining us Sunday evening.
I’m looking forward to 40 Days of Prayer 2.0! Look for more details in the near future, but we are planning on meeting in home groups on Sunday evenings in January to pray and encourage each other in our walk with Christ. I’m currently writing our prayer guide for January, and I’m excited about what we’ll praying about in January. If you would like to host a prayer group in your home, please let me know.
You can now give online! We’re bringing our church into the 21st century! Just visit our website, www.bigstevenscreek.com, and you’ll see a link at the top of the page that will take you to our online giving portal. It’s safe and secure. Take advantage of this easy and convenient way to support the ministry of Big Stevens Creek.
Continue to pray about how God will lead your family to give to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering. You blew it through the roof last year with your giving! Last year, our church gave over $20,000 dollars to support our IMB missionaries who are serving all over the world. Our goal this year is $22,000. We can do it! And, right now, our International Mission Board is in real need of financial support. Prepare now to give generously.
As you are praying for how your family might give to the Lottie Moon Christmas offering, also pray this week about how God might want you to serve next year on the mission field. We’re looking to send teams to East Asia and Russia. If you are interested in either trip, go ahead and let me know so we can start putting teams together.
Have a blessed week! I am praying for you!