MIDWEEK MESSAGE #146
Hello and welcome to Midweek Message #146. I’m inching closer to that 150 mark. It is hard to believe I have been at the MM that long and I have had my trusty editor-in-chief (Diana) keep me in line as to what I write. She deserves a ton of credit for the MM being as “sane” as it is. And as I say it almost every week: thanks for taking the time to read this.
At staff meeting two Mondays ago, Pastor Ryan (Ryan from here on) talked about how he was still working through the mountain of cards he received for his 10th anniversary in the ministry. He said he wanted to include something in the bulletin and I invited him to say something here in the MM. So the following are his words:
On Sunday February 5th my mind and heart were blown (in the very best way!) as I was surprised by so many loved ones! What I thought was going to be a surprise for my wife turned out to be a moving expression and gesture of love from you all to me on the 10th anniversary of my ordination into ministry. I was shell-shocked, dumb-founded… and completely moved in my spirit. I felt so loved (and a little sheepish with all that attention on me – LOL!). I’m STILL, two weeks later, opening cards and reading your kind words. Thank you for heaping up so much love on me, and all the East crew.
You, our church family here at OVCF, truly make “going to work” each day a joy. I cherish your friendship and your partnership. I love to laugh with, worship alongside and run to Jesus with you. I don’t think I could ever quantify or express my gratitude for you and the encouragement you’ve always given me. Suffice it to say: It’s immense ☺ Let’s keep pursing his kingdom and his righteousness together! May we join with the Spirit in Christ’s mission for Owen County.
I had a friend comment to me how cool it was what you all did for Ryan. He was watching the live stream and was totally blown away by your acts of kindness for him. The video was especially touching for him to hear the young people say, “Thanks.” He even took the time to text Ryan himself and put in his .02 worth. As I said in the video, and have said it many times from the pulpit and in person to many of you, hiring Ryan is the best thing we have done. Historically, we were coming out of the financial hurt we had experienced and had just remodeled our building. Ryan (and Hope) are a great team and I am honored to be working alongside him; to call him my brother-in-arms; to know of his integrity and work ethic; and to know he loves your children and the youth of this church.
Please remember to pray for Mandy Bowman this week. Mandy is the Director of Student Services for S-OCS.
It was good to have Ryan and Mala Croft with us this past Sunday. They are the Directors of Hilltop Christian Camp. We make every effort to send our young people to camp by offering camp scholarships. Scholarships pay half of camp tuition fees, but you must fill out a scholarship form and use the church’s scholarship code when you register. We do not want cost to prevent anyone from attending camp! For more information, please see Pastor Ryan or Diana.
This past Sunday was the last sermon in the first part of the Revelation series. For the months of March and April I am taking a different path. With Palm Sunday and Resurrection Sunday in April I thought it would be good to take a trip to the cross. So I have entitled my series for those months To and From the Cross. Here is a list of the upcoming sermons for those two months (as promised in last week’s MM):
- March 5- “Don’t Forget to Remember”- Mt. 26:17-30
- March 12- “The Sting of Failure”- Mt. 26:69-75
- March 19- “Insults and Paradise”- Lk. 23:26-43
- March 26- “From Darkness to Light”- Mark 15:33-39
- April 2- “It is Finished”- John 19:28-37
- April 9- “Alive!”- John 11:25-26
- April 16- “Religion”- Will Reed Preaching
- April 23- “The Boast of the Cross”- Gal. 6:14-18
- April 30- “Your Emmaus”- Pastor Ryan preaching
The plan right now is to start back with Revelation 6 the first week of May. I’m also working on a couple other possible series to break up the Revelation series (so we don’t get overwhelmed). I’m tossing around one called “Make Fruit Great Again” (Gal.5:22-26 aka The Fruit of the Spirit) and one on the Model Prayer (Matthew 6:5-15). Those will take us at least to the end of the summer, maybe into the fall. I honestly do not know how long the Revelation series will last. I don’t want to get us bogged down in minutia, nor do I want to get into the “prediction game” of the signs of the times so often prevalent in a series on Revelation. I want us to see it for what it is: The Lamb Wins! I would deeply appreciate your prayers as I continue developing and working on these sermons.
Thanks again for your time. Enjoy each day. Live the adventure. And remember: I love you.