I am excited about our new preaching series titled; “Prayer that Works” As many of you know Kathy and I spent a few days camping at Lewis and Clark State Park near Onawa, IA. A beautiful park on the west side of Blue Lake… yes, just across from good ol’ camp Nebowa. While there we had a lot of time to relax, talk and pray. Then, this past Tuesday I was at Nebraska Christian College to learn more about their merger with Hope International University (formerly Pacific Christian College) As their President was speaking he kept going back to this theme of dreams and prayer and putting the two together. Here is a link for our on-line readers that will help you track the NCC and HIU merger. https://ncinitiative2015.wordpress.com/
Prayer that works… do you want a prayer life that is more than meals and bedtime ritual. Do you want an intimate walk with the God who created you? Prayer The Works will help all of us connect to God in a powerful and meaningful way. Moving dreams to action through prayer that works. I’ll say right up front, this isn’t original with me, but I love the message and the Godly timing of Prayer. I’m using a resource from Sermon Central and am adapting it for our congregation. Here’s a snapshot:
Week # 1 “How to Pray Like a Righteous Man”
Week # 2 “The Power of Persistent Prayer”
Week # 3 “The Power of Persuasive Prayer”
Week # 4 “The Prayer of Antioch”
Bible Buddies, our Wednesday night children’s ministry is about to launch. Sept. 2 is our first night of the new year, with new kids, great volunteers and an incredible opportunity to reach into the lives of so many families we can’t connect with through our regular Sunday morning programming… your prayers are greatly coveted.
Oh, wow… were you here in worship two weeks ago? Aug. 9 was “MCS Sunday”. The guys from Midwest Christian Services took the lead in all areas of the service. And praise to God… they did a GREAT job! More importantly though… 5, .. Yes 5 people came forward to give their lives to Jesus! one body, many parts! We celebrate with the angels today as Aaron was baptized into Jesus during the worship service and at the invitation we had several come forward to confess the name of Jesus before others and declare their need for Jesus and their desire to follow... we celebrate with Teri Carey, a gal who has been attending with us for about 5 weeks now and also with 5 guys from MCS... Joshua, Thaddeus, Lathon, Gregory and Jordan. Thank you Holy Spirit!
And we’ll keep pressing forward in prayer, service and mission… Cherokee County Hunger Stomp, Wednesday, Oct. 21. We’re working together with area churches in an intentional effort of cooperation and unity to bring the hope of Jesus to our community and people around the world. This major project isn’t something we can do alone. We must work together, unified and on mission. John 6:35 “Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and He who believes in me will never be thirsty.” Here’s the question; how do we match the need for Jesus with a hungry world? 50,000 meals… yes, 50,000! That is a big number, but it represents only a fraction of what is needed. You can help. A community event to help fight hunger by providing 50,000 meals which will be shared around the world and in our own neighborhood. Cherokee County Hunger Stomp. This project was born out a vision for our congregation to do something bigger than ourselves. This would require us to pray, step out in faith and partner with other churches and people in the community. That is when one of our very own, Judy Ferrin, got the ball rolling with a Des Moines based agency, connected through her grandson, called “Meals from the Heartland”. The project was discussed in one of our adult Sunday school classes, they said yes – let’s go. Then it was taken to our church leadership board; they said yes – let’s see who will jump on board with us.” Then it was taken to the Cherokee County Ministerial and they said “yes, how can we help?” Then Western Iowa Tech said yes…and here is how we’ll help – we’ll give you free use of the entire conference space for the day!” Wow, that is very generous. Then we went to the Cherokee High School and they said; “yes – now, let’s find a way to get every student involved”… Do you see the momentum? 50,000 meals measured, packaged and shipped in one day by people who want to work together and stand in faith’s common ground of compassion all because one lady, by faith, heard the call to Prayer, Service and Mission. Thanks Judy. And thanks to the Lord for working to unite the congregations of this community through this God sized project!
So, here is our next step. Set aside a part of your day on Wednesday, October 21 to volunteer at this project. There will be three assembly shifts available that day. Shift # 1 will run from 9:00—11:00 a.m. and is a “closed session”. This session is only being offered to High School and College students which qualifies us for a grant to help offset some of the cost of this project. You’ll read a little more about that shortly. The other two shifts open to the public will be from 2—4 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. This will allow for flexibility and our best opportunity to hit our 200 volunteer goal.
Please, begin to pray every day and ask God to show you a person whom you can invite to come and volunteer along side of you and pray for God’s provision in the areas of wise leadership, community involvement, finances, and His message of love and compassion to be shared with people around the world who will receive these meals. Prepare financially to participate in a special offering on the 2nd Sunday in September, 9/13, when we here at FCC along with some of the other area churches will receive this offering which will go directly to the $ 10,000 goal for this project. Should we exceed that amount, we will be able to provide even more meals; and should we fall short of that goal; we’ll provide the number of meals the finances allow. We have applied for a grant that will match dollar for dollar a portion of the day which will be set aside for students only. Any meals the students put together will fall under this grant, therefore, it is possible that we will be able to reach our 50,000 meal goal at a lower total cost than our original $ 10,000 mark. So, whatever is supplied financially, will be blessed and in some cases, doubled. Again, the total amount of funds raised will determine the total number of meals with our goal at 50,000 meals.
To summarize; our mission… churches and community working together Sharing Hope with a Hungry World. Our method; Meals from the Heartland Cherokee County Hunger Stomp. The desired result; God glorified, meals provided to those most in need and the name of Jesus shared around the block and around the world.
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