MIDWEEK MESSAGE #123
Hello and welcome to Midweek Message #123. Thanks for taking the time to read this MM. Even with the busyness of life, I hope you have been able to find little pockets of rest and relaxation.
There are several really important items I would like to put on my “agenda” for this MM. I hope you will take the time to read through each one as though it pertains to you (because it may). ☺
First, you should be getting this on Wednesday and tonight is our first night back to “66.” We meet at 6:00 and end at 7:00. We start and end promptly. If this is your first time reading the MM, 66 is a study through the 66 books of the Bible. It takes about 2 years to go through the whole study. We will begin at I & II Samuel this week. Some of you may be thinking, “I will be lost so there is no sense in coming.” Not true. Each book study stands on its own, so if you join us this Wednesday then it will be the same as everyone else. Even if you are not sure it will be in your wheelhouse, I’d like to invite you to come and give it a try. If, after a few weeks, you decide it is not for you, then it is okay to step out.
Second, as we have been announcing in print and from the pulpit, this Sunday is the first small group gathering from 5-7:00 in the children’s addition. Wayne Akerson has been leading a small group for about 3-4 years. It has, in the past, met at Wayne and Valarie’s house. In the hopes of possibly getting interest for starting some other groups, Wayne’s small group will be meeting in a larger space to accommodate others. The study will be titled Jesus…The Man. The Myth. The Legend. As Wayne mentioned Sunday morning, plans are to meet every other week. We would love to have you check it out!
Third, Jo and I will be gone October 2nd and she needs your help. It is the first Sunday I have taken off in 2022 and she needs someone to run the Power Point for her in the second service. Someone stepped up for the first service and she is grateful. But if you can help in the second service she would love to hear from you. You can contact her at church on Sunday or text/call at 812.821.1897. If you are unsure of being able to do it or simply have questions, she will be glad to answer any you have.
Fourth, Ladies Bible Study (LBS) meets on Thursday, the 29th for a study by Ruth Chou Simons called “Truthfilled.” It has been a few years since the LBS last met so this will be a great time to get back into studying the Word with other ladies. It meets for 7 weeks on Thursdays from 6-7:30. If you have any questions please ask Sally Carlson (821.821.4792) or Hope East (812.585.1693). Please sign up by this Sunday so we may place the order for books! ☺
Fifth, a reminder to pray for our Educator of the Week, Lisa Eldridge, the Principal at OVMS. S-OCS has just hired a new Assistant Principal at the Middle School. We will include him in our list as soon as we get the information we need. Meanwhile, remember to pray for Mrs. Eldridge and all the administration and teachers.
Sixth, please put the date of October 30th on your calendar. That is the date for OVCF’s 18th anniversary. Due to Abram Farm being totally booked for weddings all fall and the unpredictability of the weather, we will be having the celebration inside. Stay tuned for more information in the very near future.
It is often hard to come to terms with events that happen in our lives, especially those which drastically affect our emotional state. I read the following story in a book I’m reading called A Gentle Answer by Pastor Scott Sauls. It struck me, especially since I am preaching on the Beatitudes right now:
“In the fall of 2006, a Pennsylvania milk truck driver named Charles Carl Roberts IV burst into a one-room Amish schoolhouse and opened fire on a classroom of girls, killing five and severely injuring five more. After this, he turned the gun on himself and took his own life.
In his suicide note, Mr. Roberts confessed that he had been secretly tormented for many years by two dark spots from his own past. The first was the memory of how he had molested two of his younger relatives twenty years before. The second was the memory of losing his own daughter, who had died nine years previously. That loss led him to confess he hated God.
There were two groups of people at his funeral. The first was the expected group: his family and friends of his family. The other was a group of about thirty men, women and children from the Amish community whose daughters Roberts had murdered and injured. One sociologist remarked that “the most powerful demonstration of the depth of the Amish forgiveness was the members of the Amish community went to the killer’s burial service…some who had just buried their own daughters just the day before…hugged the widow and the three children.” (Pages 66-67- edited for space)
Martin Luther King, Jr once said, “Returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only love can do that.” (p.68)
Being a follower of Jesus is never easy, especially in heart-wrenching situations. John once wrote that we are to love because Jesus loved us first (I John 4:19). Let’s make it our goal to love as Jesus loved us.
You are loved.