The Weekly Epistle 8/14/19

How long can you hold your arms in the air? How long before your arms get tired? Do you remember the biblical account in Moses’ life when his arms got tired?  We won’t be looking at that scene in our present sermon series, but it is a powerful story that speaks to where we live life.
 
In a battle against the Amalekites at the end of Exodus chapter 17, there is an interesting twist to the Israelites defeating their enemy.  Whenever Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning.  As you can imagine, after a while of Moses holding up his hands, he got tired.  So, two guys come alongside of Moses and each grab one of his arms to hold it up.  In essence they are saying, “Moses, keep doing your part and we will help you.”  
 
The church is called to come alongside each other to help them stay the course.  Just when we might say, “I don’t know how much longer I can keep going,” others lift us up.  Just when we are too weary to parent, to stick it out in our marriage, to make it through another week, to live with this pain, to keep our arms up, the church family is nearby.  As we saw from Moses’ life this past week, there are times when in our weariness we need to share the load and find relief of some additional tasks.  There are also those times, as in Exodus 17, that we need people holding up our weary arms in support and love.  Either way, church, we need each other.  Going the distance requires the help of others.
 
We were made for community.  I hope you have others around you helping you keep your commitments, sharing the load, putting courage into you, and spurring you on to love and good deeds.  Community groups will be in full stride in a few weeks.  The name community groups is not accidental.  It is in smaller groups that meet regularly where community is experienced, where the one another admonitions of Scripture are lived out, and where we taste what being the church is all about.  Sign up begins this Sunday.  There are two new groups added to our existing groups.
 
Please be in prayer for the neighborhood block party happening this Saturday.  We just learned that there is a carnival taking place at Leavitt park around the same time.  Not sure what that means, but that while it was a surprise to us, our sovereign Lord was not surprised.  He’s got this!
 
Hope you are planning on attending the picnic and baptism on Sunday, September 8.  Baptism classes will be held the next two Sundays during the first service in room 102.  Check out the details below.
 
As you continue in your week remember Jesus’ invitation in Matthew 11.  “Come all who are weary and heavy burdened and I will give you rest.”  Remember Peter’s words in his first epistle, chapter 5- “Cast all your cares on Him because he cares for you.”  Praise God that He never sleeps or slumbers, but that His eyes are constantly on us…even when we sleep!  EBC, rest in Him!
 
Blessings, Pastor Brian

Looking Forward

Sermon Direction

“Meeting God at the Mountain”
Exodus 19

Last Sunday’s Sermon

Neighborhood Block Party

We will be hosting a Neighborhood Block Party this Saturday August 17th from 4pm-7pm in the gym parking lot! Thank you to all who have already signed up to volunteer! Drop off times for food will be Friday and Saturday from 9am-12pm. Food can be left on the counter in the fellowship hall or placed in the fridge. Please label BLOCK PARTY.
Please keep this event in your prayers.

Financial Review Meeting

A Financial Review is an opportunity to learn, in more detail, our budget for the coming year in a discussion format. Join us Sunday August 18th at 9am in the Fellowship Hall. This meeting is open to all.

Business Budget Meeting

Our annual business budget meeting will be held Wednesday August 28th at 7pm. Join us at 6:30 pm for ice cream and fellowship in the Fellowship Hall. Budget meeting will start promptly at 7pm.

Church Picnic

Our annual Church picnic and baptism will be held Sunday September 8th at Opechee Point. Baptism classes will be held on August 18th (for children under 13) and August 25th (for those 13 and over). Both classes will take place during first service at 9:00. In room 102

Community Groups

Beginning this Sunday, you can sign up for the fall community groups. We will also have two new groups that will be starting up this fall.
Community Groups will begin on September 8th returned. If you still have a bottle, please bring into the office or Sunday morning and you can leave it on the back ministry counter.

Save The Dates

Our next Welcome Luncheon for those who are new to EBC will be Sunday September 22nd after 2nd service in the Fellowship Hall. 
 
The next Adult Bible Study will begin September 22nd and will run for 12 weeks. This study will be on the book of James.

The Weekly Epistle 8/7/19


“This car climbed Mt Washington.” You’ve seen the bumper sticker, I’m sure. I can remember driving the Mt Washington Auto Road as a kid. If you have ever driven towards Mount Washington (or any mountain), you know that they look one way in the distance but as you get closer, they look different. When you look at a mountain, even though it’s the same one, you would describe it differently from a distance, from down below, from the middle or up top.

That’s a lot like the Bible. God’s Word is a book with a lot of layers. When we come to God’s Word it has many applications. That is not to say, Scripture means one thing one time and something different another time. But depending on which part of the mountain you want to look at, you can apply it many different ways. This is why God’s Word is so rich! We can come to it again and again and see something fresh.

People often ask me about my process for sermon preparation. It has many different steps, but one important step in the process is observation. As Sherlock Holmes was fond of saying, “you see, but don’t observe.” When it comes to reading God’s Word, whether in preparation to teach or for our own personal time, asking, “What do I see?” is a critical question in mining the depths of God’s Word. I encourage you to make some observations about the passage of Scripture you are reading. My desire for you is that you are a self-feeding believer.

Not too long ago, I had the privilege of feeding my 8-month old grandson some yummy mush from a jar. I say “yummy” because that is what I said as I “air planed” a little helping of this green stuff from the spoon to his mouth. He would open wide and the food would go into his mouth, except those times he turned his head and it landed on his cheek. But I digress…

My point is feeding an 8-month old food is cute and appropriate. But what if I was still doing that when he was 8 years old? You would observe that something is wrong. Either the child was not developing as 8-year old’s do or it was time for that child to feed himself. How many believers are not feeding themselves God’s Word but only relying on what the preacher feeds them once a week? When I have heard that believers leave a church because they aren’t being fed God’s Word, I wonder if contained in that statement isn’t a self-indictment. I am not suggesting that it is unimportant to be fed on Sunday mornings, but as Howard Hendricks puts it, “Sitting under the teaching of God’s Word ought to be a stimulus, not a substitute for getting into it ourselves.” Are you getting into God’s Word yourself? What do you see/observe when you read it for yourself?

Speaking of sitting under the teaching of God’s Word, beginning on September 8, our sermon series will we will be looking at Second Timothy and the importance of leaving a legacy. Community groups will begin that week as well following along again in the sermon series. Later in September (9/22), we will resume our Sunday morning Bible study (9:00) on the book of James.

There are many other things happening at EBC this month and the months to come, so stay in the loop. You don’t want to miss the picnic and baptism on 9/8 and the business meeting and ice cream on 8/28. There are also baptism classes and a financial review scheduled this month.

Look forward to seeing you this Sunday as we feed on God’s Word together!
Pastor Brian

Looking Forward

Sermon Direction

“Hope For Weary Travelers”
Exodus 18

Last Sunday’s Sermon

Financial Review Meeting

A Financial Review is an opportunity to learn, in more detail, our budget for the coming year in a discussion format. Join us Sunday 8/18 from 10:20am-10:40am in Room 102. This meeting is open to all.

Business Budget Meeting

Our annual business budget meeting will be held Wednesday August 28th at 7pm. Join us at 6:30 pm for ice cream and fellowship in the Fellowship Hall. Budget meeting will start promptly at 7pm.

Church Picnic

Our annual Church picnic and baptism will be held Sunday, September 8, at Opechee Point. Baptism classes will be held on August 18 (for children under 13), and August 25 (for those 13 and over).  Both classes will take place during first service at 9:00 in room 102.

Neighborhood Block Party

We will be hosting a Neighborhood Block Party on Saturday August 17 from 4pm-7pm in the gym parking lot! Sign up this Sunday to provide a salad or dessert or to help set up or tear down as we reach out to our neighbors.

Aspire 2019 Baby Bottle Blessing Campaign

This year Aspire raised a total of $13,223.08 and a huge thank you to EBC for raising $1,653.61. There are still 43 bottles that have not been returned. If you still have a bottle, please bring into the office or Sunday morning and you can leave it on the back ministry counter.

Greeters Needed

We are looking for more people to volunteer to be a greeter for both services. If you are interested in greeting Sunday mornings, please see Vinny Caruso or call him at 254-6877.

EBC Kids

EBC Kids is recruiting more volunteers to serve as nursery workers, teachers and helpers in all classes. Please contact Mary Whitman with any questions or if you would want to serve in this ministry. 540-986-6626

Community Groups

Praise the Lord for the growing interest in Community Groups. We are looking for someone to host and facilitate a day time community group, as well as more options for weeknight groups. If you are interested, please see Tim Whitman or email the office.
 
There will be an informational meeting during 1st service on 8/11 and 9/8 for those interested in hosting and facilitating Community Groups this fall.

The Weekly Epistle 7/31/19

As most of you know, a few years ago as a church we adopted the ISKI people in support of the work Seth and Rochelle Callahan among the ISKI people in Papua, New Guinea.  Here is an update from André & Aurélie who are co-workers with the Callahans.

We are very encouraged by the growth of many in their spiritual life. Our dear Iski friends live in misery, sometimes hunger, and they work hard in their gardens, however this misery turns into a blessing because they are well aware that this world has nothing to offer them. Their hope rests in God alone and He answers their prayers daily.

We have recently translated Luke 6, “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who are hungry now, for you shall be satisfied.”

As she was working on this chapter, Brigita said, “It’s very true! As long as we are on this earth, we will live in pain and hard work. We have practically nothing, but it does not really matter because we have what matters most, salvation in Jesus! Nothing in this world can compare to what Jesus offers us, nothing! We are richer than many.” Then she said, “We have Jesus, and Jesus hears our prayers.”

Last Sunday was the first public wedding in Oguru. In Iski culture, marriage is an ill-defined term, people go out together, move in together, break up, a bit like in the West. There is no wedding day but a “trial period” that often ends in separation even after the birth of a child. Since 2017 Christians have been waiting for the opportunity to show their obedience to the Lord and their difference. Last Sunday Bitris and Moombi were married in front of the community of the church, it was a joyful celebration but also an example and an encouragement for all.

We also praise the Lord for Leoni who gave birth to a baby girl last week. Both are doing well. The baby is healthy but really small and we think she is born ahead of time. Please remember them in your prayers. Leoni had lost her firstborn child in 2017, pray that this baby girl can grow strong.

Three nights ago, a young woman called Damaris also gave birth to her first child. It was not going well.  Time was running out and the baby was not coming. Previously, before the Gospel, we had also witnessed difficult births: everyone was afraid, the women would leave the room one after the other and try to find out what could have caused this. Perhaps the father and the mother had had an argument recently? Had “harmony” been disrupted in one way or another? The father would come and shout apologies to his wife from under the house, hoping that the restored harmony would help them deliver the child…

But tonight it was different! All the women had gathered around Damaris, staying with her all night and praying for her. Lucy said, “We were not afraid because we had put Damaris in the hands of our God. We were powerless to support her but the Almighty God was with us that night. When the baby was born, we could only praise His Name. Thanks to him, a new life was born in Oguru.”

God answers prayers! He is alive. Thank you for your prayers for us. This week, we ask you to pray for rain. The last few weeks have been very dry and our water supply is at the lowest, we have barely enough for a week.

Thank you for your prayers,
André & Aurélie

Looking Forward

Sermon Direction

“When Worship Goes Wrong”
Exodus 32
Pastor Dan Lyle

Last Sunday’s Sermon

HVAC Update

The HVAC system will be up and running throughout the entire building this Sunday! A huge thank you to Dowling Corp and Durgin Electric!

Prayer Builders

Prayer Builders will be meeting this Sunday from 10:20am-10:40am in the room behind the stage.

Financial Review Meeting

A Financial Review is an opportunity to learn, in more detail, our budget for the coming year in a discussion format. Join us Sunday 8/18 from 10:20am-10:40am in Room 102. This meeting is open to all.

Business Budget Meeting

Our annual business budget meeting will be held Wednesday August 28that 7pm.

Church Picnic

Our annual Church picnic and baptism will be held Sunday September 8that Opechee Point. Baptism classes will be held on August 18 (for children under 13) and August 25 (for those 13 and over).  Both classes will take place during first service at 9:00.

Neighborhood Block Party

We will be hosting a Neighborhood Block Party on Saturday August 17thfrom 4pm-7pm in the gym parking lot! Sign up this Sunday to provide a salad or dessert or to help set up or tear down as we reach out to our neighbors.

Aspire 2019 Baby Bottle Blessing Campaign

This year Aspire raised a total of $13,223.08 and a huge thank you to EBC for raising $1,653.61. There are still 43 bottles that have not been returned. If you still have a bottle, please bring into the office or Sunday morning and you can leave it on the back ministry counter.
Jay and Bette Moreau: 528-4458 or 759-3780
Norma: 783-0211 or 848-7203

Greeters Needed

We are looking for more people to volunteer to be a greeter for both services. If you are interested in greeting Sunday mornings, please see Vinny Caruso or call him at 254-6877.

EBC Kids

EBC Kids is recruiting more volunteers to serve as nursery workers, teachers and helpers in all classes. Please contact Mary Whitman with any questions or if you would want to serve in this ministry. 540-986-6626

Community Groups

Praise the Lord for the growing interest in Community Groups. We are looking for someone to host and facilitate a day time community group, as well as more options for weeknight groups. If you are interested, please see Tim Whitman or email the office.
 
There will be an informational meeting during 1st service on 8/11 and 9/8 for those interested in hosting and facilitating Community Groups this fall.

ELMM

ELMM (Military Ministry) will not be meeting during July and August