MIDWEEK MESSAGE #115
Hello and welcome to Midweek Message #115. I don’t know about you but it sure has been wild and crazy week since I last touched base with you. I’m going to spend the first part of this MM telling you about some youth stuff.
If you were here Sunday or watched online (you did, didn’t you?), you heard Pastor Ryan mention that the planned trip to Kentucky had been postponed for a few days. Instead of leaving this past Monday, they will be leaving Thursday, the 21st and be returning Monday, the 25th. After having such a hard time at the beginning finding an open door to go and having them all close, Ryan finally saw an open door and made all the arrangements for this trip. All the pieces fell into place. God continued to open doors for his alternate plans, even down to finding an alternate place for them to sleep Sunday night. As he mentioned Sunday morning and I reiterated, we do not know what God has in mind for this change in plans. Maybe a whole new batch of people they will get to know and help? Maybe something else? All I do know is that it will be a rich experience for them and I can’t wait to hear about their ministry to the folks there.
An update to your generosity: As of today, $4,973 has been raised for their trip through donations and fundraisers! ☺ This will allow them to pay for all those going on the trip, as well as blessing people in KY with some much-needed items (microwaves and other small appliances). Thank you so much for showing the heart of OVCF in your generosity.
Another youth item Pastor Ryan has asked me to help him promote.
August 7th is our Kid’s Church Move-Up Sunday! Students beginning first grade will move-up to the Early Elementary Class. Students entering 4th grade will move-up to the Late Elementary Class. Students entering 7th grade will “graduate” from Kid’s Church and will receive a certificate and small gift at the end of their last class on August 7th. All incoming 7th graders are invited to ROOTS youth group, which begins meeting Sunday nights from 5-7 pm on August 14th, and are welcomed into our adult church worship services on Sunday mornings. If you have any questions, please ask Pastor Ryan. He is the man with the answers!!
While I’m at it with the youth area: I just want to give a big hats off to all the Sunday morning teachers, helpers, youth worship leaders, and workers who make the Kid’s Church a fun place for the students on Sunday morning. You all rock!!
One more item to keep in mind: July 31st is our 5th Sunday Family Worship. The Nursery and Pre-K class will still meet but the rest of the children’s church youth will be with the adults that morning. Something special is planned for the music but I don’t want to scare you away so I am not going to give it away. And no, I am not leading the music! I wouldn’t even do that to my worst enemy let alone people I love. ☺
Near the beginning of the year, we sent out word about the desire to develop more small groups. At the time we had two which were meeting and some of you had expressed a desire to be a part of one. The sign-up sheet was on the table and the response was good. However, we fell down on the job. I take responsibility for failing to be more proactive with it, but the time has come to take that next step. In all honesty, developing small groups is no easy task. Many churches have full-time staff who take charge of that ministry and oversee its implementation and success. We do not. Those who were interested also have full-time jobs and families and I let it slip through the cracks. I apologize for that and hope to alleviate that problem. On Sunday, August 14th at 5:00 there will be a meeting for all who were interested and signed-up for small groups. I want to fill you in on where we are and what the plan is moving forward. I don’t anticipate a long meeting unless we have such a great turnout and interest just “bubbles over” into some great discussion. (I hope, I hope). Even if you didn’t sign up, you are welcome.
This coming Sunday, Lord willing, will be the 5th in the series of Seven Cancers. This past Sunday, I spoke about Sloth and tried to take it away from the idea of physical laziness to talk about spiritual laziness. I used a quote by Dorothy Sayers in the first service that I left out in the second. Afterwards, someone asked me for a copy of that quote and it got me to thinking that maybe I should not have left it out. So here is that quote with some thoughts preceding it:
In the history of Christian spirituality (for the record: I am not fond of that word but it was used in the research I was using), sloth has two components: apathy and sadness. The first one means “without care,” implying an aimless indifference to one’s responsibilities to God and to man. One writer, Dorothy Sayers, wrote, “The sin that believes in nothing, cares for nothing, seeks to know nothing, interferes with nothing, enjoys nothing, loves nothing, hates nothing, finds purpose in nothing, and lives for nothing, remains alive only because there is nothing it would die for.”
That quote really slams hard at the person who takes an “I don’t care” attitude toward life. I am particularly concerned, as I said Sunday morning, about those who have that attitude toward their Christian walk. The lack of motivation for reading the Word, for praying, for worship should serve as a wake-up call to all of us who find ourselves in that trap. It is so easy to get into it and to become wrapped up in “our world” and not desiring to find the time to spend with God. Any athlete who wants to excel knows he/she has to dedicate themselves to that sport. Nothing haphazard. Not just when they feel like it. Tragically, some take that attitude toward their walk with Jesus and then wonder (maybe) why it is suffering. Let me challenge you-as I try to do myself-to make time to be with God. Make time to pray. Make time to be in His Word. Make time to worship. Fall in love all over again with Him.
Oops, I’m only supposed to preach on Sundays. ☺ Have a great rest of the week.