Seen on a church sign, “We care about you, Sundays 10 AM” (only at 10 AM we care?).
Another sign said, “Don’t let worries kill you. Let the church help.” Or “We love hurting people.”
Mixed messages not only show up on signs. The frown on our face and the song we sing about joy in our hearts. The values we embrace and the time we give to live those values out, don’t always line up. God continues to remind me of the importance of closing the gap between what I say is important and what is actually lived out in practice during the week.
Someone might say, “I value time with my family” but then there is very little time in the schedule for meals with the family, or sharing in the kids’ bedtime routine, or attending a child’s recital, sports activity, or achievement award night. A person might say, “fellowship with other believers is important”, yet pass on community groups, or inviting others to their home or take the time at church to connect with others. A person might say, “I want the benefits of a disciplined life, but with minimum effort.”
What if someone observed you during the week. What would they conclude about your values by watching you? A person can observe a lot about what you value by following you around during the week.
My intention is not to lay on guilt, but for each of us (that means me) to evaluate any disconnect between what we say we value and our activities during the week. How have you seen the need to live out your values more consistently? What changes need to be made to the use of our time? “Many people don’t want to make good decisions; they want to make painless ones” (Haddon Robinson). Isn’t that often the case? We know we should make some changes, but we just don’t want it to hurt.
In an earlier epistle I spoke to the stewardship of our money and the manner and attitude in which we are to give. Did you know we are to be good stewards of our time? We are to redeem the time (Ephesians 5:15-17). Scripture speaks often of using our time wisely.
As humans we love to “smorgasbord.” We want to do it all! We live on the notion that more is better. It has led to more stress, indecisiveness, lack of motivation, and in worse case scenarios, burn-out, depression, serious physical health problems, and depletion of energy.
Has God called us to over-extend ourselves? Has God given us more to do than we are able to do? Your pastor (me) continues to wrestle with this on a personal level. As the saying goes, “If you think I have a finger pointing at you, there are three fingers pointing back at myself.”
This is an exciting journey we are on together to make the most of the time we have, in the season of life we are in, in order to finish well!
Blessings to you, Pastor Brian
Small Enough for God
1 Peter 5:1-7
Link to This Sunday Worship Service
Mark Your Calendars:
Calling all OWLS to join together for “Love and Light,” a Christmas celebration in music, dance and drama presented by One Voice. We will meet in the church parking lot at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, December 18, 2022 and drive over to the Interlakes Community Auditorium at Interlakes Middle/High School, 1 Laker Lane, Meredith, NH. We look forward to this time of fun and fellowship
Christmas Eve and Christmas day services
Please join us for our Christmas Eve Candlelight Service it is being held Saturday December 24th at 6:00 P.M.
(There will be no nursery at this service)
Sunday Christmas day we will have one service being held at 10:00 A.M. (There will be no nursery or Kids ministry during this service)
Sunday New Year’s Day we will have one service at 10:00 A.M.
We resume to two services on January 8th, 2023
Please take note!!
There will be no live stream for Christmas Eve or Christmas day
“The Gospel & LBGT Questions” conference on January 14, 2023
Please join us on Saturday January 14th as we offer this conference led by Rachel Gilson from CRU.
Here is some information about the Rachel and the topics she will be sharing.
9:00-9:45- Theological Foundation
10:00-10:45- Our children & their peers
11:00-11:45- How to reach that community as a church
Rachel Gilson (M.Div, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) serves on the leadership team of Theological Development and Culture with Cru, and is the author of Born Again This Way: Coming Out, Coming to Faith, and What Comes Next (The Good Book Company, 2020). She is pursuing a PhD in public theology at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, and has written for outlets such as Christianity Today, Desiring God, and the The Gospel Coalition. Rachel lives with her husband Andrew and their daughter in Massachusetts.
Also Coming in January:
“Celebration of Name Change” will be held between services on January 8
A Six-week Men’s study, “Essentials for Spiritual Growth” begins on Saturday, January 21.
“What in the world are we doing here?” sermon series in Isaiah
(More details for these events will be available soon)
Living Hope Kids
There will be no Nursery at the Christmas Eve service, also, no nursery or Kids ministry on Christmas day. Sorry for any
Trajectory Rec will be taking a break starting December 26th through January 23rd.
Cancellation Procedure for Sunday Mornings
In the event of bad weather that would potentially impact services, the following will be taken into consideration: the current weather in Laconia, timing of the weather event, and whether roads, walkways, parking areas will be cleared. A decision will be made by 7:30 am to cancel one or both of our services. Living Hope Lakeport will notify of cancellation using the following: WMUR TV*, Church website news feed www.laconiachurch.com, Email (weekly epistle list), and Living Hope Lakeport private and public Facebook pages. *(If 1st service is cancelled, it will say “No Early Services”, if both services cancelled, it will say “No Sunday Services” on WMUR)
Reminder Deacon’s Fund
EBC has a “deacon’s fund” which is administered by the Elder’s. This fund serves our church members as well as the community with financial needs. You can donate to it by marking your envelope “Deacon’s fund” or give online choosing this fund as your option. Go to the website (laconiachurch.com) and click on “give” and proceed from there. If you have any questions, please contact the church office at 524-2277 or email email@example.com.
Updates From our Missionaries
From Tom & Lois Jackson
Our hearts are full of thanks to God and we trust that you know how deeply appreciated you are. Your love, prayers and interest are of great and ongoing encouragement. Your sacrificial gifts precious and multiplied in many ways.
We thank God for progress here!
- The little school room at Nyamukaiwa has been re-roofed.
- The village community at nearby Chishato will soon be receiving their water tanks and watering points. We are thrilled that because of God’s gift of water and your gifts we will be able to supply a wide area at this location. The water is abundant and by placing two 10,000 liter tanks on a hill, we can gravity feed the water to several village communities. Praise the Lord! We are learning so much as we go along about finding water and then getting the systems set up that can best make use of what God supplies.
- The church building at Rengwe is nearing completion and is looking beautiful. The builders have taken such pride in their work and have worked with joy. It has been such a testimony to the many who pass by. Praise God for the way He has provided.
The government offices have been working hard to complete the process of approval for building a school. The boundaries have been informally defined by the community leaders and cover 15 hectares (37 acres) of lovely, hilly, tree-covered land. Pray as the official boundaries are marked, the site plan drawn up, and building begins.
- Pray for the ten churches in the district to continue to be strengthened in God’s Spirit and His Word.
- Pray for God’s mighty hand to be at work in the hearts and lives of the leaders and children at the National Children’s Camp planned for December 12-16. Twenty from our district will be attending.
- Pray for God’s gracious care on the drilling team and the equipment as they carry out their work and for the successful drilling at the remaining four sites.
- Pray for the community and church leaders as they are equipped to manage their clean water systems together with their nutritional gardens.
- Pray for the government officials to complete the task of pegging the land to be demarcated for the Nyamukaiwa school.
- Pray for the national church Education Committee as they take over the next step of working with the Department of Education in mapping and setting up the school. This committee are taking on the responsibility of building and running the school as it is formally established.
- Praise and prayer for the ongoing outreach of the churches in Hurungwe alongside each of these developmental projects.