There's a viral video that's been all over the internet this past week of a post-game interview with a high school football player named Apollos Hester. Take a look at it here:
In the words of the news anchor, "WOW!" Can you imagine how having a team mate like Apollos would encourage you to keep going even when the game isn't going your way?! This young man has a real future in some area of communications! In fact, his inspirational interview has already been turned into a song. Take a listen:
The story of Joseph that we're reading in chapter 3 of The Story (Genesis 37-50) is a perfect example of someone like Apollos who kept going "regardless of the scoreboard"!
How do you suppose Joseph was able to do that? Well, that's what we're going to be talking about this Sunday, September 28th. I hope you'll be able to join us!
A couple of announcements:
The Women's Fall Soup Dinner is coming up on Friday, October 17th. A sign-up sheet is in the Fellowship Hall so that the team can plan for numbers, childcare, and if you will be bringing soup or bread to share.
Trunk 'R' Treat will once again take place in our church parking lot on Halloween evening. Mandy would love to have someone help her with the planning of this wonderful outreach to our community. Please let her know if you are willing to do so. Sign-ups for participation will soon be taking place, so plan now to participate with your own decorated trunk!
How easily do you accept or even embrace changes in your life? I've got a mixed track record in that area - I like some things to change and bristle or even stubbornly hold out against others. For instance, when my alma mater, North Park College, became North Park University, I didn't really have a problem with it. There were many positive reasons for the change and it's been a positive move for the school. On the other hand, I haven't quite adjusted to my former church changing their name from Mercer Island Covenant Church to Evergreen Covenant Church. I understand their reasoning, but it's hard to re-train yourself to refer to it by it's new name.
Speaking of changes, take a look at this card trick.
As we continue in the storyline of scripture with the story of Abraham this Sunday (Genesis 12-22 and chapter 2 of The Story) we'll see how Abraham is affirmed for his faith in God... and then proves to not be that faith-filled in his decisions. The great news is that God still accepts us in our imperfect following. In fact, he chooses us even though we probably wouldn't choose ourselves!
I hope to see you this Sunday, September 21st!
The title of this post is the Latin for the phrase "in the image of God". That's how we were created as spelled out in Genesis 1:26-27 (part of our reading this week in "The Story"). How does that sound to you - that you were created in God's image? Is it easy or difficult for you to think that highly of yourself? For most of us (even those considered beautiful by society) we have a hard time looking at our self and not seeing all of our flaws. But you are God masterpiece (Eph 2:10) and He values you higher than the most breathtaking mountain of gorgeous sunset!
Take a look at this short film about Annette Gabbeday:
It’s easy to look at someone with challenges and only see the challenge. Sometimes it’s takes God’s eyes and grace to look past those things on the surface and remember that each of us are made in God’s image. Each of us have our imperfections and challenges which make us unique.
Genesis 1:27 says, “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.”
Annette Gabbedey, a jeweler with no fingers is made in God’s image. And so are you.
This Sunday, September 14th, we'll be taking a look at the "big bangs" that start off the story of humanity and set the stage for all that was to follow. Hopefully you will be able to read chapter 1 from "The Story" - we will have copies for you to purchase at church. If you don't have a copy you can read Genesis 1-3 and 6-8. See you there!
My wife, Tami, is an avid reader who always has at least two books she's reading (usually not at the same time). As an elementary teacher, she has a love for children's books and has been working her way through the Caldecott Award winners of the last 100 years or so. But she also makes regular use of the library and, since she got her Kindle, she also downloads free books and sometimes checks out electronic copies from the library system. I tease her because she always keeps a "boring book" on her bedside table to read last before going to sleep so her brain won't be running over the plotline.
I, on the other hand, tend to read for pleasure in spurts. I can go for months without picking up a novel and then start obsessively reading one book after another. Sometimes I will read a book suggested by Tami or another friend, sometimes it will be a novel that catches my eye, and sometimes I'll even be inspired to read the novel a movie I saw was based on.
So what about the Bible? I usually only read a short passage to start each day (other than my sermon preparation). There have been a few times when I read through the entire Bible over the course of a year (or a bit longer). There is so much to meditate on and apply to our lives in Scripture that it's a shame that many Christians never get beyond the Gospels and a few favorite passages. For whatever reason, some people find reading the Bible to be too intimidating to attempt.
This Sunday, September 7th, we'll be launching a church-wide experience in discovering the continuous story of God's love and pursuit of humanity. To aid our discovery, we'll be using "The Story", an abridged, chronological arrangement of biblical passages from the NIV Bible. For those of you who may be new to faith, The Story will give you a holistic and sequential picture of the storyline of Scripture. For you seasoned Bible veterans, the chronological arrangement of texts will help illuminate the way the whole Bible fits together in a single grand narrative. In no way is The Story intended to replace the Bible. We will be using it in the same way you might use a devotional book to gain new insights and perspectives on God's Word.
The children's Sunday School classes will be using the special curriculum so that they will be focusing on the same part of the story as the rest of us will be in Worship. There are age-appropriate versions for the entire congregation and the youth group and some newly formed small groups will focus on the Biblical passages contained in each week's chapter.
We have copies of the materials available for you to purchase. Here are the prices of the different resources:
* Adult hard cover edition (retail $19.99) $10
* Teen soft cover edition (retail $14.99) $8
* The Story for Kids (retail $9.99) $6
* The Story for Children (retail $19.99) $12
* The Story for Little Ones (retail $17.99) $10
We hope that everyone in the congregation will be reading these Bible passages together, so we don't want anyone to let the cost keep them from getting the appropriate book. If you would like to contribute a bit more in order to offset the cost for someone who may have difficulty affording their own copy, you are welcome to. Plan on bringing cash or your check book and make checks payable to "CCC".
One of the great things about Community Covenant is the number and variety of study/community groups that we participate in throughout the week. There are large, small, men's, women's and co-ed groups. Some of the existing small groups will be using The Story as the basis for their study and two new groups will be starting up. If you are not already a part of a group, I hope that you will consider joining one of the new ones - or even starting your own! Contact the people at numbers listed for more information.
Wednesdays at 7:00 PM facilitated by John and Melodie Fleming (760-885-4907)
Thursdays at 7:00 PM facilitated by Jeff and Tami Palmberg (997-0305)
Thoughts about living as a Jesus follower and life at Community Covenant Church