Another Pastoral Epistle 10/3/18

Imagine with me a gathering on a beautiful fall day at my house with lots of people. On the lawn outside, children are playing a game of tag. Other adults and children are sprinkled around the backyard. There is chit-chat and enjoying some fun around a game of horseshoes or volleyball or joining in with one of the kid’s silly games.

You notice that some people have moved from the lawn to the back deck. On the deck, where there are fewer people, they are talking about the weather, the local fairs, sports, and best places for some apple picking.

Inside the house in the living room there are less people than on the lawn and deck. The atmosphere is different inside this room. People are more relaxed and there is lots of laughter going around. They seem to enjoy being with each other. These people seem to know each other a little better.

After staying for a little while in the living room you make your way to the kitchen. There are a handful of people sitting around the kitchen table. There is not enough room for more than a few people. It is at the kitchen table where there seems to be more personal stories told and people seem to know each other quite well.

Now imagine that this trip through my home during a social gathering represents how relationships work. There are times for hanging out on the lawn. There are people we are comfortable with on the deck talking about safe topics. Then there should be those people we know a little better and can laugh and share stories with. And we all need kitchen friends. Sharing meals, struggles, joys, happenings at work, school, home, and the various seasons of life.

The point is we have different relationships with different people. There are acquaintances. There are “hang out” friends. There are close confidants. They are all important. They all provide opportunities to encourage one another. They can be connecting points for common ground and interests. They open the way for us to listen in on other’s stories and gain a greater understanding of their background, experiences, and happenings that have shaped who they are. Hopefully, they move us to appreciate our Creator God who has made us all different. And to appreciate people on various levels.

Imagining this journey through my home could potentially bum you out! “I wish I had kitchen friends!” I can understand this feeling, however I cannot fix that. But I can encourage you. Earnestly pray about this. Intentionally make it a priority to get together with others. And give it time. The timing of when to move to the next room is determined through mutual disclosure.

I do hope you have joined a community group. I am convinced that in time that is where relationships are established. But highlighting community groups was not the reason I took you on that journey through my home. The more people I get together with, the more I hear there is a lack of close relationships. Frankly, it breaks my heart each time I hear that. I am praying that as I ask, “What’s next for EBC?” the answer in part is, “We are a friendly church that makes friends.”

Hope to see you soon!
Pastor Brian

Looking Forward

Sermon Direction

“Breaking the Seals” Revelation 6

Last Sunday’s Sermon

Prayer Builders

Prayer Builders will be meeting this Sunday from 10:05-10:25 in the room behind the stage.

MSM

Momentum will NOT be meeting next Tuesday 10/9

Help Wanted

EBC is currently looking for a part time janitorial / general maintenance person to complement our existing janitor. This will be a paid position. Duties to include cleaning and general maintenance of the EBC facility, mowing & trimming of lawns, some snow shoveling, sanding & salting and other duties as the need arises. Candidate must be a self-starter and be able to work with a minimum amount of direction. This position will report directly the Facilities Trustee but must be able to take direction from the Pastors and administration people. For more information contact Bill Wixson at 603-524-8580 or email buildings@ebclaconia.com

Help Needed

Karen Doyen is looking for someone temporarily to be a companion to a young blind woman in Franklin. This is a paid position and the hours are Mon – Fri 9am-1pm for about 6 weeks. Please call Karen at 320-1838 for more details.

Trunk or Treat

We will be hosting our 3rdannual Trunk or Treat! October 31st from 5pm-8pm Bring your kids by the gym parking lot for some extra fun! This is a great way to get to know our church neighbors and them us. We would like to have our parking lot full of decorated trunks for a safe place for kids to enjoy the evening. If you would like to participate and decorate your car trunk you can sign up this Sunday. There are also other ways you can help make this night special by donating cider, candy, or making a soup or chili for our participating families to have for dinner that night. Other items needed are fire pits, lighting and portable generators. Signup this Sunday at the Ministry Counter and see Laura Hollenbeck with any questions.

Right People in the Right Places
Network Workshop

Part 1: Option 1 Saturday 10/27 9am-12pm
Option 2 Thursday 11/1 6pm-9pm

Part 2: Saturday 11/3 9am-12pm

Must attend both parts. Sign up in advance to get your book at the Ministry Counter.
This will be the last week to sign up

Welcome Luncheon

If you are new to EBC in the past two years, you are cordially invited to our upcoming Welcome Luncheon for new attenders on, Sunday, October 14. This will be a great opportunity to meet and connect with other newcomers and members of the EBC family. The luncheon will be held after the second service, approximately 11:45. We hope to see you there! Please follow this link to RSVP via Facebook or you can email the office.

ELMM

The next meeting of the Military Ministry (ELMM) will be Saturday October 13th@ 0800.

This months meeting will meet at the EBC Gymnasium. Veterans, retirees, active duty military, men, women and all denominations are welcome. Please come join us in fellowship, prayer and discussion of our common bond of those who serve.

(Please note this is a personal ministry and not an EBC church ministry)

TREC Art Contest

Trajectory REC’s Monday Night Basketball Program is having an art contest! They are looking for artists, designers, those with a creative flair to come up with the new TREC logo to be featured on all TREC Basketball materials including shirts! The winning designer will receive a $100 GC to Olympia Sports! Please see Justin Whitman for the details of the contest: jkwhitman119@gmail.com

Clothing Donations Needed

Belknap county Dept. of Corrections is asking for clothing donations for both male and female inmates for when they are released from custody as well as for inmates who have job interviews through the Work Release Program. Donations will be collected now until the end of October. Please see Lisa Bauman. A box will be located by the coat closet where you can leave your donations each week.

Suggested items are: Coats and jackets, winter hats, scarves and gloves, winter boots, blue jeans, sneakers and shoes (W sizes 5-10 and M sizes 9-13), socks, white polo shirts, pants and dress pants, button down dress shirts, blouses, sweaters, blazers.

Another Pastoral Epistle 9/26/18

An old wise man from the church where I served in Maine loved to say, “If you have trouble sleeping, don’t count sheep, count your blessings.”  I should practice that more often. And not just to help me fall asleep, but to fill my gratitude tank. Do I notice the blessings when I am awake?
 
Years ago, as part of a building campaign, as a family we started a blessing fund. Others have called it a “Count your Blessings” fund. This is how it worked. Any time we were blessed by something we purchased being less than we expected, we put that savings in a blessing fund.  If someone picked up the tab or surprised us with a discount or someone gave us a break on a cost (without our asking for one) the savings went into this blessing fund.  Our older two kids, who were quite young at the time, would get into it as well and if we missed the savings, one of them would say, “Blessing fund!” It was amazing the amount that was collected through this simple activity. Even more amazing was to see our blessings!  We, in a very literal sense, were counting our blessings!
 
Seeing God’s blessings reaches far beyond monetary gifts.  We are blessed with “every spiritual blessing in Christ” Ephesians 1:3 says.  We are blessed with God’s protection, His presence, answered prayer, His comfort, His spoken Word, His people, and in knowing that even the troubles of life are sovereignly designed to accomplish His purposes in our lives.  There is no question He is a blessing-giver. It is a question of, “Do we see them?” Perhaps your blessing fund will be filled with savings. Or perhaps it will be filled with written accounts of God’s daily blessings in your life.  Or perhaps it will be more of a mental awareness to what our great God has given you and is doing in your life- even in those trials. Just try counting them!
 
I have said it before, I am blessed to serve here at EBC.  You are a reminder of God’s goodness. I love worshipping with you each Sunday.  And while I am not able to interact with each of you personally each Sunday, my heart is refreshed by you.  I hope you are taking advantage of the time in between the two services. I am confident that the more you make it a priority, the more you will be glad you did.  And the more others will benefit. I can’t help but think of the hymn, “Make me a blessing to someone today.” Is there someone God wants you to bless today, this week, this coming Sunday?  
 
I remember recently driving through a toll booth prepared to pay my toll when the attendant said, “Drive on through, the person in the car in front of you payed for you.”  Was this one for the blessing fund? Well, in that case, I decided at the next toll to pay for the person behind me. Isn’t that how it is supposed to work? We are blessed, so bless others.  Paul says in 2 Corinthians 9, “You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God” (verse 11). 
 
Blessings to you,

Pastor Brian

Looking Forward

Sermon Direction

“Tears in Heaven”
Revelation 5

Last Sunday’s Sermon

Help Needed

Bill Wixson is looking for a few strong men with strong backs to help move the old appliances out of the gym kitchen. They will be moving the old appliances out THIS Sunday 9/30 after 2nd service.
If you are able to help, please contact Bill at 524-8580. Please bring old shoes and a pair of gloves.

Welcome Luncheon

If you are new to EBC in the past two years, you are cordially invited to our upcoming Welcome Luncheon for new attenders on, Sunday, October 14. This will be a great opportunity to meet and connect with other newcomers and members of the EBC family. The luncheon will be held after the second service, approximately 11:45. We hope to see you there!

Click here to RSVP via Facebook or email the office.

Right People in the Right Places
Network Workshop

Part 1: Option 1 Saturday 10/27 9am-12pm
Option 2 Thursday 11/1 6pm-9pm
Part 2: Saturday 11/3 9am-12pm

Must attend both parts.
Sign up in advance to get your book at the Ministry Counter.

Learn more here.

TREC Art Contest

Trajectory REC’s Monday Night Basketball Program is having an art contest! They are looking for artists, designers, those with a creative flair to come up with the new TREC logo to be featured on all TREC Basketball materials including shirts! Connect with Justin Whitman for the details of the contest.

Simply Beautiful Conference

This is a one-day conference for girls, their mothers, and their spiritual mentors.
When: October 20th from 9am – 4pm.
Where: 14 Hunter Rd. Uxbridge, MA 01569

Purchase tickets here. See Susan Lyle for more details.

Clothing Donations Needed

Belknap county Dept. of Corrections is asking for clothing donations for both male and female inmates for when they are released from custody as well as for inmates who have job interviews through the Work Release Program. Donations will be collected now until the end of October.

Please see Lisa Bauman.

A box will be located by the coat closet where you can leave your donations each week.

Suggested items are:

  • Coats and jackets
  • winter hats
  • scarves and gloves
  • winter boots
  • blue jeans
  • sneakers and shoes (W sizes 5-10 and M sizes 9-13)
  • socks
  • white polo shirts
  • pants and dress pants
  • button down dress shirts
  • blouses
  • sweaters
  • blazers