It is hard for me to come to this particular part of the year without thinking of newness. It is a very Biblical concept. And it is something that each of us, Christian or not, needs to be aware of, need to pursue. The choice is obvious- either we become new, or we stay the same. Speaking for myself, I don't want to stay the same... ever. I am not nearly all I want to be or believe I should be. So I am all for being made new.
But how? Paul tells us that if anyone is "in" Christ Jesus, they "are a new creation, the old has gone, and the new has come." (2 Corinthians 5:17). And Jesus says in the revelation that John received, "Behold, I make all things new." (Revelations 21:5) That is a pretty amazing promise. One that will only be completely fulfilled when he comes again.
But in the meantime, we can be made new and can help make the world new, by being "in" Christ, by inviting him into our hearts, and by abiding in him, at his invitation (John 15). This is not something that we do once and are done. Rather, it is something we need to do every day- our personal prayer of surrender. Also, it should be stated that once we have been made new, we are commissioned to join him in making others, and the world, new as well. Big challenge!
So how about it? Do you want to be the same, or be made new? I pray we will choose to be made new, and follow him into this new year with high expectancy, hope, and joy!
Sundays - Every Sunday - Worship Service - 10:30 am in person and via Zoom.
1/1 - Communion Sunday - Also still collecting coins for benevolence.
1/15 - Annual Meeting and Potluck following the service - in person and via Zoom.
Wednesdays - Every Wednesday Bible Study - 7 PM via Zoom
Thursdays - 1/5 - Church Board Meeting via Zoom - 7 PM
Contact Gary @ firstname.lastname@example.org for Zoom links
Other News -
Communion Sunday - Start the new year with Communion during worship on Sunday, January 1. If you are attending via Zoom, please have your own elements ready to participate.
Annual Meeting and Potluck -Plan to stay after worship on Sunday, January 15 for a potluck and then our annual meeting. Everyone's input is needed. Even if you are relatively new to the church, be sure to come! It is an important time to look at the past year and look ahead to the new year. Please bring a couple of dishes to share for the potluck. Look for your minutes from the 2022 meeting via your email. Be sure to read them before the meeting and print them if you want to bring them to the meeting.
Prayer Request - Please keep Deb Schroeder in prayer. She was in the hospital this week with Afib. She has been released and will be on several kinds of medication. She will have a follow-up with a cardiologist in January.
Gary Schwerin, pastor