Another Pastoral Epistle 9/5/18

It was thirty-five years ago (August 27) that I stood in front of a room full of people and unreservedly said, “I do” to the woman who had swept me off my feet.  There were many guests in that room, but as corny as it may sound, it was as if it was only Donna and me. I learned later that there were unseen guests at that altar that day.  The unseen guests of “expectations.”  
 
In my premarital counseling, I ask couples to write out 15-20 expectations of their marriage.  Anything from, “I expect my spouse to be faithful,” to “I expect my spouse to go out on dates with me.”  At first pass, the couple figures it will be difficult to arrive at 20 expectations. But soon discover that they had expectations they hadn’t even thought of until then.  We all have expectations- for our marriage, our friendships, how we should be treated by others, people who wait on us at the restaurant, and yes, the church. 
 
A visitor to the church has expectations.  When we arrive on Sunday mornings for worship we hope for certain things to happen (or not happen).  Think about this, on a given Sunday there may be 200 expectations for what will take place before, during, and after worship.  
 “I expect the coffee to be hot.”
 “I expect to sit in my familiar seat.”
 “I expect the worship set to include some of my favorite songs.”
 “I expect the pastor’s sermon to be done in 30 minutes” (dream on).  
 
What are we to do with expectations?  There is some biblical counsel to help us.  In Philippians 2 we are told to consider others better than ourselves.  We can manage our expectations by remembering it isn’t all about us. Romans 8 speaks of how in this life we groan as we wait eagerly for our glorification.  We are to lower our expectations in this life and raise our expectations for the next. Over and over in Scripture we are called back to contentment and joy. The problem isn’t in having expectations, it is in what we do with them when they aren’t met.  And what helps to keep our expectations in check is to live confidently that our Sovereign God is in complete control. 
 
For our hope in Christ transcends all present circumstances; all unmet expectations.  As Leslie Newbigin put it, “I am neither an optimist nor a pessimist. Jesus Christ is risen from the dead!”
 
We will rejoice this Sunday for those who have been changed by the Risen Christ not only in our worship with our brothers and sisters in Christ, but also those 5 individuals who will be baptized! Join us at Opechee point following worship.  Bring your own lunch, lawn chairs and games. Baptism will begin at 2:00. 
 
There is a lot going on this month and next and we don’t want you to miss out.  Check out the announcements in the epistle, bulletin, and EBC Facebook page, as we continue to strive for better communication.  And we do “expect” you to do your part in following along. 
 
Serving Him who exceeds all our expectations,
Pastor Brian

Looking Forward

Sermon Direction

“The Church that Nauseates God”
Revelation 3:14-22

New sermon series coming

“In the Shadow of Hope”
Revelation 4-12

Last Sunday’s Sermon

audio

video

ELMM

The next meeting of the Military Ministry (ELMM) will be Saturday Sept. 8th@ 0800 in the Fellowship Hall. Veterans, retirees, active duty military, men, women and all denominations are welcome. So please join us in fellowship, prayer and discussion of our common bond of those who serve.

Discovery Class

Starts THIS Sunday, September 9th.  Meets at 8:30am in the Fellowship Hall and will meet for 4 weeks. This class is for those who desire to become members or anyone who would like to learn more about our church.

» Learn More

Church Picnic

THIS Sunday, September 9that Opechee Point after the 2ndservice. 
Bring some chairs, a picnic for your family and outdoor games to share! 
Baptism will take begin at 2:00 pm.


The following people will be baptized this Sunday during the picnic:
Eleck Lyle, Triaunna Dyer, Kaleena Dyer, Grace Hoehn, and Michelle Thorin.

Please pray for them and rejoice with them as they take this next step.

» Learn More

Community Groups

Community Groups will begin week of September 23rd. Signups start this Sunday.

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Help Needed

We are looking for some volunteers to help transport Ella Eshelman to and from church on Sunday mornings. Bill Wixson has offered to organize a schedule and is looking for 5 volunteers. Please contact Bill at buildings@ebclaconia.com or 524-8580 if you are able to help.
 
We also have a young lady who is new to Laconia and is looking to attend EBC. She needs transportation to and from church on Sunday mornings. She lives on South Main St. If you are able to offer assistance, please contact the office.

EBC Kids Step Up Sunday

Sunday September 16th. Kids will graduate or “Step Up” into the appropriate classroom for the new school year.

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