Friday, November 30, 2018

December 2018 Newsletter

The Christmas Landing

A few days ago, NASA landed a robot on Mars. The robot is called InSight. It is just the eighth successful landing on Mars in human history, and it was no small feat. After traveling 300 million miles, for almost seven months, it hit the atmosphere going 12,300 mph. InSight then had to decelerate to just 5 mph in under 7 minutes while performing dozens of operations flawlessly in order to succeed. After it landed, it sent a signal back to Earth that it was safely on the ground and was ready to embark on its mission.

As I thought about this great achievement now just a few weeks before Christmas, I couldn’t help but draw some comparisons between the two “landings.” God sent His Son clear across the universe to touch down in a Bethlehem manger (Mic 5:2). The Christmas Landing flawlessly executed dozens of prophetic details according to a detailed plan. The alien being took the body of a human baby yet was fully divine (Isa 9:6). As designed, He was born into Abraham’s family (Gen 12:3), a son of David (Isa 11:1, Jer 23:5). His mother was a virgin (Isa 7:14), His arrival brought gifts from afar (Ps 72:10-11). And meanwhile, the entire world anticipated the results of His extraordinary mission with hope for widespread effect (Isa 9:7).

NASA calls their alien robot InSight because, on one level, the robot will give scientists “insight” into the inner nature of the red planet. But InSight is short for “Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport.” Its name reveals the details of its mission.

One could say the same about the name “Jesus.” Jesus was a common name in the first century and quite unremarkable. But the name Jesus was carefully chosen; a hint of His mission. It was revealed by the angel of the Lord to Joseph in order to reveal the details of His calling. “Jesus” is a variant of Joshua, “Yeshua” in Hebrew, which means “Yahweh is salvation.” As soon became clear, Jesus’ mission was to show the world God’s love by giving Himself for the forgiveness of their sins. Just before the Christmas Landing the angel said to Joseph, “And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins” (Matt 1:21).

There was plenty of celebration in NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California after they received confirmation that InSight touched down safely on Mars and the mission could go forward. It reminds me of the angelic jubilation at the Christmas Landing (Luke 2:13). It must have been something to behold! But, let’s not forget, the landing is only the beginning of the mission. The Christmas Landing was to give us “insight” into the Father (John 1:18) and provide a savior for our sins (Rom 5:8, 2Cor 5:21). It’s one mission we are certain can be declared a success.

Have a Merry Christmas, Pastor Richard


Wednesday night, December 5 from 7:-00 - 8:15pm, all boys and girls are welcome  to join us for the Ultimate Christmas Party. It is free for grades 1-5.

Please mark your calendar and plan on joining us on December 24 at 7 pm for our annual Christmas Eve Candlelight Service. 

Youth Group has had a blast the last few weeks enjoying the cooler temperatures and new friends who walk in the doors. We are excited to still be meeting new faces each week as the word continues to get out. In the previous weeks we have looked at different Bible characters as well as  why we are thankful this Thanksgiving season. 

Just a few dates to be aware of in the coming weeks:
Progressive Dinner--December 14 from 6-9:30 (Meet at Faith Church!) No Youth Group--December 21 and December 28

For the progressive dinner your child will need to fill out the emergency contact and the release of liability forms which are located here and here.  You can also sign up here. We must know by December 9! 

Thank you to all who volunteered to be houses for our Progressive Dinner! We are all filled!

Our drop off center collected 2,024 boxes with an approximate 6 year total of 12,000 boxes! 
To God be the glory!

A couple of weeks ago, Pastor Richard started a new series on Acts and God's mission to bring the Gospel to all the earth. In our newsletters, we decided to highlight different leaders and their mission to bring the Gospel to our community through various ministries at FCC.  Last month, we heard from Linda Skaer about her passion for working with our kids. This month we want to highlight why kids ministry is so important from our children's perspective. Watch this video below and hear Juliet Jackson tell why she loves our Kid's Worship.

Kid's ministry is incredibly important to FCC, which is why Pastor Richard has chosen to serve during worship for the last four weeks. Working with our kids is easy and you can serve them by giving as little at 20 minutes on a Sunday morning, just like Pastor Richard has this past month. If you would be willing to serve for one month for as little as 20 minutes each Sunday, 
please contact Linda Skaer.


There are no new events happening for the Women of Faith this month, so instead we will share a recipe for our favorite warm drink during the holidays. Here's the recipe:

2 quarts apple cider.
1-1/2 cups orange juice.
3/4 cup pineapple juice.
1 tablespoon brown sugar.
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice.
2 cinnamon sticks (3 inches)
Dash ground cinnamon.
Dash ground cloves.

While some FaithGroups continue to meet through the holidays, Kevin shares with us in this video what we can expect come January for all Faith Groups.

Thursday, November 1, 2018

November 2018 Newsletter

Gratitude Precedes the Miracle

During the 40 Days of Prayer, we had a Thanksgiving Tree in the Prayer Room. The idea for that came from a quote in Ann Voskamp's book, One Thousand Gifts. As we transition into November, a month designed to lead us to a place of gratitude and Thanksgiving, let us think about what that really means. Ann writes, 
“The practice of giving thanks … eucharisteo … this is the way we practice the presence of God, stay present to His presence, and it is always a practice of the eyes. We don’t have to change what we see. Only the way we see. Thanksgiving–giving thanks in everything–prepares the way that God might show us His fullest salvation in Christ …. Faith is the gaze of a soul upon a saving God …. The art of deep seeing makes gratitude possible, makes joy possible …. Joy is God’s life. We only enter into the full life if our faith gives thanks. Because how else do we accept His free gift of salvation if not with thanksgiving? Thanksgiving is the evidence of our acceptance of whatever He gives. Thanksgiving is the manifestation of our Yes! to His grace. Thanksgiving creates abundance. Jesus embraced His not enough, for he was fully man… He gives thanks … and there is more than enough, for he was fully God: El Shaddai, more than enough. Eucharisteo always precedes the miracle. And who doesn’t need a miracle like that everyday? Thanksgiving makes time. The real problem of life is never a lack of time. The real problem of life – in my life – is lack of thanksgiving. Thanksgiving creates abundance; and the miracle of multiplying happens when I give thanks … it’s giving thanks to God for this moment that multiplies the moments, time made enough. I am thank-full. I am time-full. Eucharisteo, remembering with thanks, this is the bread. We take the moments as bread and give thanks and the thanks itself becomes bread. The thanks itself nourishes. Thanks feeds our trust …. Manna with thanks, eat the mystery of the moment with trust, and I am nourished another day – or refuse it … and die. Jesus calls us to surrender and there’s nothing like releasing fears and falling into peace. This is what I have always wanted and never knew: this utter trust, this enlivening fall of surrender into the safe hands. There is no joy without trust! Gratitude is the most fruitful way of deepening your consciousness that you are a divine choice.“Here you can enact eucharisteo; here you can become a current in a river of grace that redeems the world! Here I can become the blessing, a little life that multiplies joy, making the larger world a better place.”

Here are events coming up in the month of November!

Ladies, keep reading Murder on the Orient Express and plan to join for our Fall Book Club. You should begin reading the book now, then we will meet on Nov 15 at 7 pm at the Ferris's house to discuss the book. Click on the picture above to buy the book from Amazon. 

Most Faith groups ended in October for the Fall Semester, although a few of them will continue to meet. We will relaunch Faith Groups in January. You can begin signing up in early January and they will begin meeting on the Jan 20.

Nov. 16, 2018
7-9 pm at Faith Community Church
Come listen to some clean stand up comedy and help support the Delaware County Pregnancy Center at the same time. Tickets are $12 in advance, $15 at the door. 

Every other year Pastor Richard teaches a 4-Sunday Baptism Class for kids ages 8-12. The class uses a comic-style workbook to help kids understand what baptism is, why we do it and whether now is the right time (with the help of mom and dad). The class will run January 6 through 27 and those who are ready will be baptized on February 10 during worship.

Youth Sunday School begins November 4 at 9:30am. Make sure your kids don’t miss it!

Youth group is now running in full swing, each week we have anywhere from 20 - 45 students. Sunday School will be starting again at 9:30 in the Community Center beginning this Sunday, November 4th. The first week the youth directors will be providing a little breakfast during the Sunday School hour as a way to introduce the new time.

Notable dates for the future:
- November 2, 9, 16, 30: Youth Group (7:30-9:00)
- November 23: No Youth Group (Happy Thanksgiving!)
- December 14: Progressive Dinner (more information to follow in the youth newsletter)
- June 30 - July 5, 2019: SHACC (more information to follow in the youth newsletter)

This past week the rain altered out plans. Instead of taking a trip to Lancaster for the Corn Maze we took a trip to Malvern and played Laser Tag and in the arcade at Grand Slam USA. Below is a few pictures of students and leaders with their tickets and picking out their prizes.

To subscribe to the youth newsletter visit our home page here.

What is Your Mission?
We are going to begin featuring videos from our volunteers and ministry leaders asking them why they do what they do. This month, Linda shares with us in this video, why she is passionate about working with kids through our FaithKids Worship service.

With the fruit of 40 days of prayer in our possession we’ll resume our fall schedule. Adult Bible Fellowship begins at 9:30am, November 4 in Room C.  Jon Foreacre, Eric Madison and Brant Vogel will be teaching a 6-Sunday class called “Welcome Home.” We’ll examine ways to become more friendly as a church and as a church member. What is our posture and attitude really saying to others? How might we think we’re being friendly but communicating the opposite? What do we need to do when we meet a guest at church to help them feel they’re welcome and wanted by us and by God?

The Women’s Bible Class will begin November 11 at 9:30am. Fredda Ferris will lead a study on the book of Micah. All women are invited to attend.

Kids and Youth Sunday School begins November 4 at 9:30am. Make sure your kids don’t miss it!

Pioneer Girls will be hosting their Pal-Gal Operation Christmas Child shoe box packing party on November 14 at 7:00 in the gym.

Ladies…. looking for a women’s bible study and can’t join us Wednesday mornings? Come out Sunday, Nov. 11 at 9:30 am to learn more about our Sunday morning Women’s Bible Study. If you’ve got kids, this is a great way to dig deeper into the Word while they attend age-based Sunday School and do the same!

November 12-19
Faith Community Center (Gym)
Drop-off location for OCC.
Hours are:
Mon, Nov. 12: 4:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Tue, Nov. 13: 4:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Wed, Nov. 14: 9:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Thu, Nov. 15: 4:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Fri, Nov. 16: 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Sat, Nov. 17: 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Sun, Nov. 18: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Mon, Nov. 19: 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM
Sign up to serve here.

Each fall a local family donates a large amount of Thanksgiving turkeys to the Network.  I wanted to share their heart of Thankfulness:  "My husband and I have been donating this amount of Turkeys for over 20 years. It began with an elementary school drive and I noticed how few turkeys were donated. I always like the concept of the turkeys because each one felt like it fed a family. We are extremely grateful for our gifts of family, shelter, food and all the basics necessities of life. It’s a good reminder at this time of year that every one of us should care for our neighbors. We are truly cheerful givers while we are able to do the turkeys." 

The Women's Weekly Bible Study will end on November 7 and then will begin again on January 16, with a study on the Apostle Paul.