Getting Along...for Real
Let’s continue from last week looking seriously at love, as the Bible teaches.
The end of all things is near; therefore be serious and discipline yourselves for the sake of your prayers. Above all, maintain constant love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins. 1 Peter 4:7-8
Peter says that in the big scheme of things, time is short before Jesus comes again. There is urgency to ministry. This is all the more reason to live for and serve Jesus faithfully! Part of doing that is to take seriously Jesus’ command to pray—to stay connected with the reason the church exists. And the kind of love Peter is talking about is agape or self-giving love. It is the kind of love that is not blind to the faults of others, but the kind that accepts people WITH their shortcomings. (Yeah, that’s some of the difficult part of love.)
Be hospitable to one another without complaining. Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received. 1 Peter 4:9-10
Treating each other graciously is a privilege—not smiling on the outside, but complaining on the inside. Let everything you do be based solely on love and genuine. And here is an important lesson about gifts God gives us: Use them or lose them! We are to use our gifts because, in God’s big ministry picture, He needs us to do whatever our gifts enable us to do. As God’s grace is unlimited and has manifold (or many) forms, so should our gifts blend together working toward the same goal-accomplishing God’s will. But that only happens if we each are driven by the same Holy Spirit.
Whoever speaks must do so as one speaking the very words of God; whoever serves must do so with the strength that God supplies, so that God may be glorified in all things through Jesus Christ. To Him belong the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen. 1 Peter 4:11
Peter speaks about two general ministry areas—Speaking God’s words and serving with God’s strength. While they often overlap, their emphasis is the same: That God, through Jesus Christ, is praised in every form of ministry. So, no matter your area of serving, make certain your central focus is always glorifying God. Peter then ends with a benediction (which is a prayer of blessing) on all the church (that’s you and me!)—to Jesus Christ alone belongs power and glory—now and for eternity. And He is only reason the church does anything! (Oh yeah, that’s you and me...and Jesus…together, we’re the church.)
Pastor Rusty <><
MORE GOOD NEWS AND UPDATES:
1. We are hosting a fun, free, family event for everyone to take part in! This event, Back to School Bash, will take place this Saturday, September 11, 11am-1pm. The purpose is to highlight area nonprofits, businesses and youth serving organizations in hopes of providing resources to all who attend. Participating vendors are invited to set up a table, bring informational handouts and be ready to share ways to get involved! The entry “fee” is a school supply to distribute to all the event guests. We are also highlighting many ministries from our church and inviting our neighbors to take part! In addition to the booths we will have free lunch and our bounce house and playground will be ready for play! We would love for you to join us in the fun!
2. The United Methodist Women’s Rummage Sale is Saturday, September 18, 9am-3pm. Proceeds benefit local missions. Items will be collected in Hall CD on Thursday, September 16, 3-6pm and Friday, September 17, 10am-2pm. Clothing, books, household item and SMALL LIGHT furniture will be accepted. No pickup of items will be available. You may contact Sharon Fogleson at 317-941-3383 with any questions.
3. 2or3 Campaign Thank You Celebration Sunday, September 26: We will worship together at one service at 10am after which all are invited to join to celebrate our successful three-year capital campaign. Come celebrate you, our church, and how the Lord has provided for the projects that have been completed and are yet to be finished. Let us join together in thanksgiving for God’s faithfulness and all He has done, is doing, & will do.
4. Many have been wondering what is happening in the UMC. Sunday September 26, all attendees of the Old Bethel Congregation are invited to attend a meeting about our denomination. Decisions will be made in the future and we need to know how this will effect Old Bethel. The meeting is at 3pm in the sanctuary. Speakers will be Mike Womack and Jerry Rairdon, who both have knowledge of the details about the UMC. Mike is a member of the General Conference and is also a member of the Mt. Auburn UMC. Jerry is a former pastor of Old Bethel, a current pastor at Noblesville First UMC, and a leader in the Room for All Coalition. All are encouraged to attend. This is only the first of informational meetings.
5. Old Bethel & Partners Food Pantry is incredibly blessed to partner with Meijer on East Washington street for their Simply Give Campaign. This campaign runs from now until October 2nd. Visit their store and purchase a $10 Simply Give card and Meijer will donate an additional $10. You can also pick up these cards in the lobby of the church. Thank you for continued support of the Old Bethel and Partners Food pantry!
6. Looking to get out of the house for a little bit? We still have openings for volunteer receptionist for Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday afternoon shifts (12:30-4pm). You can work each week or every other week. OR you might like to be a sub and serve when others are on vacation. Building traffic is slowly increasing and having receptionists to answer the phone is a GREAT help to our administrative staff! Contact Administrative Assistant Lynda Preston at firstname.lastname@example.org or 317-359-9651, extension 131.
7. This Sunday message notes are below. September 12: The Real Place Called Heaven
“Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven…” Col. 3:1a (NLT)
1. What is heaven?
First, it’s where _______ alone __________.
“Lord, I look up to you, up to heaven, where you rule.” Psalm 123:1 (TEV)
Second, it’s a ___________ ___________.
“There are many rooms in my Father's home, and I am going to prepare a place for you. If this were not so, I would tell you plainly.” John 14:2 (NLT)
Third, heaven is ________________ for us.
“Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.’” Matthew 25:34 (NIV)
2. Where is heaven?
“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” John 14:6 (NLT)
So, while we don’t know the “_____________,” we do know the “__________.”
3. What is heaven like?
“Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty? They are higher than the heavens--what can you do? They are deeper than the depths of the grave--what can you know? Their measure is longer than the earth and wider than the sea.” Job 11:7-9 (NIV)
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love Him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NLT)
4. How do I get into Heaven?
“He will wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying, nor pain. All of that has gone forever.” Revelation 21:4 (Living)
In Jesus, we become ________________!
There are going to be others in heaven I’ll _________________, as well as all who have put their trust in _____________ _______________.
I will also have _______________ in Heaven.
“God blesses you who are hated and excluded and mocked and cursed because you are identified with me, the Son of Man. When that happens, rejoice! Yes, leap for joy! For a great reward awaits you in heaven.” Luke 6:22
5. How do I live until then?
First, don’t be distracted by ___________________.
“Friends, this world is not your home, so don't make yourselves cozy in it. Don't indulge your ego at the expense of your soul.” 1 Peter 2:11 (Msg)
Second, don’t be discouraged by ________________.
“That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are quite small and won't last very long.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-17a (NLT)
Third, focus my energy on __________ ___________ ____________.
“I run toward the goal, so that I can win the prize of being called to heaven. This is the prize that God offers because of what Christ Jesus has done.” Philippians 3:14 (CEV)
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