News – February 27th

Paul DreillingChurch News

Dear Immanuel family,

The Apostle Peter in his first letter wrote, “Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme…” (I Peter 2:13). But what do we do if the laws of the land conflict with God’s law? In Acts, Peter had experienced this conflict first hand when he and the early Christians were told by the high priest, “We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching,” to which Peter responded, “We must obey God rather than men…” (Acts 5:28, 29).

Our world is becoming more and more hostile toward Christianity. This week, Fox News ran a column about Barronelle Stutzman, who is a florist and a follower of Jesus. Last year she refused to provide flowers to a long-time customer who was marrying his male partner. Mrs. explained, “My relationship with Jesus Christ teaches me that marriage is between a man and a woman, I couldn’t do his flowers and create something that was special for him because it would — it would dishonor Christ.”

A superior court judge has now ruled against her saying the first amendment protects religious beliefs, but not necessarily actions based on those beliefs. The attorney general has agreed to settle the case for a $2,000 penalty if Mrs. Stutzman agrees not to discriminate in the future. The article goes on to say, “Stutzman compares the deal to the one Judas struck saying, quote, I certainly don’t relish the idea of losing my business, my home, and everything else that your lawsuit threatens to take from my family, but my freedom to honor God in doing what I do best is more important.” What a courageous woman who is choosing to obey her God rather than man.

http://www.foxnews.com/transcript/2015/02/24/exclusive-florist-who-refuses-to-do-gay-wedding-speaks-out/

obey

PSD

Preparing for Sunday’s Worship – March 1, 2015: We have a special Sunday morning of worship and a Baptismal service. You will be encouraged as we worship together, Pastor Michael shares about baptism, and many of those being baptized share their testimonies.

baptism

ANNOUNCEMENTS AND UPDATES:

· Winter Bible Conference – Sunday, March 15th – Dr. Jim Schuppe, will be with us again this year for a conference entitled, “Hearers and Doers” from James 1. Dr. Schuppe will bring three messages during the Sunday school hour, AM service and PM service. Dr. Schuppe is a former Pastor, Academic Dean at Washington Bible College, and professor at Liberty University. You will love how he handles the Word of God in a precise, practical and humorous manner.

wbc

· CEF Good News Across America – Summer Missionaries – GNAA is looking for Summer Missionaries who would love to minister to children or help with logistics in Indianapolis for two weeks this summer. For more information and questions please call Amy Haines.

· Monument Avenue 10K- Tailgate Party – Saturday, March 28nd – Don’t forget to mark your calendars for the Monument Ave 10K Tailgate Party! It will be March 28 from about 9am-1pm. Come cheer on the runners/walkers and enjoy some good food and fun games! More details will follow in the coming weeks!

tailgate

· Church Photo Directory – Don’t Miss Out –Photography dates NOW include March 19, 20, 24 & 25 (2pm to 9pm) and March 21 (10 am to 5pm). Sign up at the Welcome Center – 1) after Sunday School, 2) after AM service and 3) before PM service! Registration available online through the IBC website at the bottom of the home page. Contact ibcphotodirectory@gmail.com if you have any questions.

Men’s Group – Feb 25 – Ask It: Time Over Time…Take 2!

Tom SmithMen's Ministry

Greetings Men – Well guys, I trust none of you came to church last Wednesday evening and sat in the frozen, snow covered parking lot waiting for our group to start. But if you did, you MAY have seen one of our guys, who picked up donuts from Krispy Kreme anyway, and sat outside in the frozen parking lot, and ate them all! ALL 36 (3 dozen) of them……

IF this actually happened (and it has before), and IF you truly did witness it… just keep it to yourself! Remember rule number 2 of our Men’s Group: “What happens in Men’s Group stays in Men’s Group.” We are a SAFE group of men!!!

Now on to more serious stuff! Strange as it may sound, one of my favorite words is “incremental”. According to one of my online dictionaries, the term is defined as ‘A slight, often barely perceptible change’.

Think about this – when our kids were born, did we expect them to walk, talk, feed themselves, ride a bike, go to college, get a job, earn money and plan for retirement ALL on the day they were born? When we started our jobs or careers, did we know everything day one? Did our 401K’s or IRA’s exist immediately out of the blue? For those of us who are “folliclely challenged” (BALD), were we always that way? And for those of us who know the Lord as Savior – did we become perfectly Christ like on the day we came to know Him?

The answer to ALL of these questions is a definite and emphatic NO! So how does anything progress from nothing to something? The answer is incrementally – little by little, over time – often barely perceptible! My favorite example of this is watching kids grow. First they are totally helpless. They need changing, feeding, washing and carrying around. Soon they walk, then they talk, then they feed themselves, dress themselves, start to make their own decisions, learn, communicate, read, ride bicycles, drive cars, go to college, get jobs, marry and have children of their own. How wonderful to watch the incremental changes in their lives.

And so it is as we walk with the Lord. We make incremental investments in our relationship with Him over time. We come to know Him, we learn about who He is. We grow to trust and depend on Him, and strive to become more like Him every day. But this requires incremental investments of time with Him and time in His Word. And just as those incremental investments of time with our children and saving for retirement ultimately pay off, so does our incremental investment of time with our Lord.

This week, Andy talks about how TIME OVER TIME (incremental) investments make a difference in our lives. This is a fantastic session. Don’t miss it.

JON PETERSEN and CHRIS CLARKE are on for snacks this week. I can’t say what we are having, but I will say that we will dismiss PROMPTLY at 8:30!! God bless you men… Tom

News – February 20th

Paul DreillingChurch News

Dear Immanuel family,

This past week some Christians celebrated Ash Wednesday which is the first day of Lent for Western Christianity. Lent is a 40 day period leading up to Easter. In the Roman Catholic tradition, it was a time of self-denial and fasting, however, the Protestant Reformers celebrated Lent in an “evangelical way” by rejecting the connection between fasting and penance “as a work of merit or a form of divine worship,” as Calvin put it.

In Christianity Today, Pieter Bruegel writes, “Without the observance of Lent, and Holy Week in particular, Easter Sunday fails to keep in proper balance the Cross and the Resurrection as the two main New Testament paradigms for the Christian life. The dominant paradigm for Christian discipleship this side of heaven is “sharing in his sufferings” (Phil. 3:10). Baptists not only can but should observe Lent, because it will help them take up the cross and follow Christ in the midst of a suffering world.”

Whether you practice Lent or not, this might be a good time to practice one of the principles of Lent, that of self-denial. Can I make an observation and suggestion? In our high tech world we are inundated with time on our “screens” – the TV, computer, smart phone and tablet. But the Bible tells us that we need to have dominion over things like this. Some might say that we are no different from the folks of Babel who wanted to elevate themselves above God, by using our technology. How are these devices changing us and what is it doing to our relationships with the people around us?

There are some who believe that Satan is using technology to stamp out meaningful relationships from our lives. I am not advocating that we celebrate Lent, but I am challenging myself and you to have a time of turning off the “screens” and spending time together talking, playing board games, or taking a hike. The church can be one of the places where we put limits on technology and give priority to meaningful relationships. Let’s just do it.

nodirection

PSD

Preparing for Sunday’s Worship – February 22, 2015
• Sermon title and text: At Ease in Zion: The False Hope of Religion and Luxury (Amos 5:18-6:14)
• Sunday’s Scripture Reading – 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11

ANNOUNCEMENTS AND UPDATES:

Churchwide Elder Fellowship: If you don’t have tickets yet, you will have to go to the Fellowship Hall kitchen and see John Luck after the Sunday AM service. The Elder Fellowship is scheduled for this evening, February 22 promptly at 5:30 pm. Come join us for a special time of meeting with your elder and praying for our missionaries. Tickets are $4/person or maximum of $20/family.

around

Church Photo Directory – Don’t Miss Out –Photography dates NOW include March 19, 20, 24 & 25 (2pm to 9pm) and March 21 (10 am to 5pm). Sign up at the Welcome Center – 1) after Sunday School, 2) after AM service and 3) before PM service! Registration available online through the IBC website at the bottom of the home page. Contact ibcphotodirectory@gmail.com if you have any questions.

Good Samaritan Ministries (GSM): GSM is a rescue mission for men and Immanuel has been invited to lead their Saturday evening program (5:30 to 8:00pm) on March 14, April 11 and May 9 . We are looking for volunteers who can work alongside the leadership team. There will be sign ups in the Welcome Center this Sunday.

gsm

10 K training – Cancelled: Because of the weather, the 10 K training has been cancelled for tomorrow, Saturday, February 21st. I guess you’ll have to jog in place at home.

Men’s Group – Feb 18 – Ask It: Time Over Time!

Tom SmithUncategorized

Greetings Men – From time to time, I have confessed various things about myself to you guys. It is now time for another confession!

Here goes… For whatever reason, be it a genetic flaw, be it a personality issue, or be it a thing drilled into me by my Dad who considered waking up after 6:00 a.m. was the waste of a whole day of time… who knows… but I am OBSESSED with time.

My dear understanding bride knows this. And anytime one of my daughters or family members asks my bride “What can I give Dad?” the answer is a clock!

I love clocks! I have clocks in every room of my house. If there is a room without a clock… I find one and put it in there”. I have clocks that display time on the wall. I have clocks beside my favorite chair. And I have a clock in every bathroom in my house! I have digital, analog, windup… I have CLOCKS! Clocks tell me what time it is TODAY….

Moreover, the few times when I have had a medical procedure that required that I go under anesthesia, the first question I always asked when I woke up was “What time is it?” The questions were NOT “AM I SICK, AM I GOING TO LIVE OR DIE, DO I HAVE TO EAT VEGETABLES FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE” – BUT What time is it?

Somehow, I think the Lord was setting His Word in my mind about the importance of TIME… not my time, but HIS time in MY life.

This principal is illustrated in the verses below:

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of every opportunity of TIME, because the days are evil. ‘Ephesians 5:15,16’

A person’s days (TIMES) are determined; you have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed. ‘Job 14:5’

Both of these amazing verses come down to “TIME”.

Guys – God has given each of us a set amount of TIME. And the pertinent question is NOT “WHAT TIME IS IT?” but “WHAT DO WE DO WITH THE TIME GOD HAS GIVEN US?” What a great question for us men to contemplate!!

Please join us as Andy talks to us about this very important subject Wednesday night!

LARRY HUNSUCKER and BOB CHILDRESS are on for snacks this week. I would suggest you throw your diet books away for this week as these two guys are GOOD!!

God bless you men… Tom

News – February 13th

Paul DreillingChurch News

Dear Immanuel family,

One of the distinctives of our church is, by God’s grace, that we have so many marriages that have stood the test of time.  Cal Thomas, syndicated columnist, gave a tribute to his wife on their anniversary in light of George Clooney’s tribute to his wife, Amal, in the recent Golden Globe Awards in Hollywood.  I thought you would enjoy this, as we celebrate Valentine’s Day tomorrow.

Mr. Thomas writes, “What is “love”? If it isn’t more than feelings, a superficial sugar rush that occurs when one is near someone special, what happens when the feelings subside? No marriage can be sustained at the level of teenage romance (cue the late Ricky Nelson): “A teenager’s romance is fickle or true; a teenager’s romance is red hot or blue; you’re either in misery or high on a crest; a teenager’s romance is like all the rest.”  Uh, not exactly Ricky.

Some years ago I introduced my wife to a colleague at a Christmas party this way: “I want you to meet my first wife.” Later he sought me out and asked with a serious expression, “Why did you bring your first wife to the party?” I replied, “It’s the only one I’ve had.” He looked at me surprised, as if I were a dinosaur at the Museum of Natural History.

Maybe I am, but it has worked for us. Has it always been perfect? Of course not. No marriage is and anyone who says so isn’t telling the truth. When two imperfect people marry you double the imperfections. Someone recently asked me how we have managed to stay married. I answered, “Forgiveness.” If you admit you are far from a model man and husband and look for the good in the other person you will find it. Fault doesn’t require a long search. It begins in the mirror.

So, happy anniversary, Charlotte Ray. I don’t look like George Clooney, but I’m grateful you find me appealing. Besides, in a very short time, George and Amal won’t look like they do today. I hope they stay married. I know we will. As the old Perry Como song goes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFXA_-2cIYU

“Till the end of time

Long as stars are in the blue

Long as there’s a spring of birds

To sing I’ll go on loving you.”

love

Preparing for Sunday’s WorshipFebruary 15, 2015

  • Sermon title and text: Israel: Judged for Immorality (Amos 5:1-17)
  • Sunday’s Scripture Reading – Psalm 34:11-22

(Dress warmly on Sunday – the Weather man is predicting another shot of arctic air flooding into the areabringing blustery winds, and wind chill between 5 above and 15 below zero through much of the day)

ANNOUNCEMENTS AND UPDATES:

  • elsalvadorPowell Report, Love Offering and Reception: This Sunday night in our evening service, there will be a missionary report given by Gary Powell, missionary to the country of El Salvador, Central America.  Gary and Sharon Powell serve at My Father’s House, an orphanage that gives refuge to children who have been abandoned or are suffering difficult family situations.   We’d like to give the Powells a love offering and a WMF Reception in the Fellowship Hall will follow their report.

 

  • gsmMinistry Alert! Good Samaritan Ministries (GSM): GSM is a rescue mission for men and Immanuel has been invited to lead their Saturday evening program (5:30 to 8:00pm) on March 14,April 11 and May 9 . We are looking for volunteers who can work alongside the leadership team.  There will be sign ups in the Welcome Center starting this Sunday, February 15th. We would love to have you as part of the team!

 

  • Churchwide Elder Fellowship – Around the World in 80 Minutes :   If you don’t have tickets yet, don’t forget to purchase them at the Welcome Center after the AM service. The Elder Fellowship is scheduled for next Sunday night, February 22 at 5:30 pm.  Come join us for a special time of meeting with your elder and praying for our missionaries.  Tickets are $4/person or maximum of $20/family.
  • churchdirChurch Photo DirectoryDon’t Miss Out –Photography dates NOW include March 19, 20, 24 & 25 (2pm to 9pm) and March 21 (10 am to 5pm).  Sign up at the Welcome Center – 1) after Sunday School, 2) after AM service and 3) before PM service!  Registration available online through the IBC website at the bottom of the home page.   Contact ibcphotodirectory@gmail.com if you have any questions.

 

  • Opportunities to serve in our Children’s ministry –  Are you looking for an opportunity to give back to others in a way that you have received from the Lord?  Our Children’s Program has some open spaces that maybe you could fill.

wol

  • Grove Avenue Christian School – Open House: Grove Christian School located in Grove Avenue Baptist Church, 8701 Ridge Rd., will be holding its’ annual March OPEN HOUSE Monday, March 10th from 6:00-8:00 pm. The school serves children from K4 – 12th grade. New for the 2015-16 school year is half or full day classes for four year-olds five days a week. They also have before and after care. Please invite friends and family to come with you to Grove Christian School Open House Monday, March 10th from 6:00-8:00 pm.  For more information go to grovechristianschool.com or call 741-2860.
  • libhrsNew Library Hours – The library will be open for 20-30 minutes immediately following the evening service through the end of March.   If this trial period is successful, these hours will become permanent.

 

Men’s Group – Feb 11 – Ask It: Musical Chairs

Tom SmithMen's Ministry

Greetings Men – First of all, let me say thank you to all of you who came out last Wednesday evening for “Pizza Night” and for eating 104 pieces of pizza. The other 8 (Pineapple & Ham) MAY have been eaten by Pastor Michael… but I think I saw a couple of other guys attacking that one too! In any case, it was a GREAT night of FOOD, FUN & FELLOWSHIP as our men reunited after a two month break. It was great to see all of you guys back at our Men’s Group, and we welcomed a few new men as well. I heard and saw many of us reconnecting, and was told of how our group had connected over the Christmas break and had actually ministered to one another! Praise God!

I was reminded once again this morning how quickly life can bring changes. Sunday afternoon people were outside in shorts, riding motorcycles and buying flowers to plant outside. Spring has sprung – or so they thought! When my bride and I woke up this morning she looked out the window and asked “Is that SNOW out there on the ground?” Now before I put on my glasses in the morning, everything looks the same – large fuzzy masses of barely indiscernible colors – usually brownish green since our bedroom window looks into the woods. But sure enough, when I put on my spectacles, there was a thin layer of snow on the ground. Now I don’t recall any of the weather forecasters saying anything about snow. Rainy and chilly maybe, but not snow. With all of the sophisticated “forecasting” equipment, data models, satellites and weather monitoring equipment, it is God who is ultimately in control not only of the weather, but everything else, and He alone has full knowledge of what has and is and is going to happen in our world! As Pastor Michael reminded us on Sunday, God does not forecast the weather, He ordains it!

Aren’t you glad we can know and serve a God who has complete knowledge and all wisdom? As we continue in our series ASK IT, Andy encouraged us to ask every day “What is the WISE thing for me to do?” What is the relationship between knowledge (which is what weather forecasters presume to have) and WISDOM? How are they similar and how are they different? Where do both knowledge and wisdom originate? How can we as men gain access to that knowledge and wisdom? Can we have one and not the other?

If these questions intrigue you, join us this Wednesday as we learn what Solomon – considered the WISEST human to live on earth – has to say about knowledge, wisdom, and the difference between the two. This is part two of this very practical and fascinating series. Don’t miss it!

JAY COX and BOB TERRELL are on for snacks this week. Both of these guys are experience “chefs” and we can expect great things! Thanks Bob and Jay!

God bless you men… Tom

News – February 6th

Paul DreillingChurch News

Dear Immanuel family,

Bold Truth in 50 Shades of Grey

Steamy is the word used to summarize the books, the trailer, and the soon to be released movie, 50 Shades of Grey. The story involves an illicit romance between a college graduate, Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey, a 27 year old successful, wealthy entrepreneur. And that is about all we need to know.

What began as a self-published eBook was acquired by Vintage Books in 2012. Two volumes were added the same year making it a trilogy with combined sales topping 100 million copies. 50 Shades hits the theater this week just in time for Valentine’s Day. But the story is not about love. It’s a sadistic blend of erotic dreams, selfish pride, and sexual abuse correctly called “mommy porn.” Read anonymously as a book on your personal device, the story will now seduce audiences in packed theaters. Owen Strachan, the President of the Council for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, writes of its cultural impact, “50 Shades of Grey is disgusting, despicable, and unerringly awful for women. Don’t view this film as just a film. Know that it is much more. It is representative of the new sexual progressivism and its amoral worldview. 50 Shades of Grey speaks to where things are headed in our culture.”

On Friday’s episode of the Today Show the cast of 50 Shades including Jamie Dornan, who plays Christian Grey and Dakota Johnson, who plays Anastasia Steele, gathered with Carson Daly, Natalie Morales, and Savannah Guthrie for an advanced screening of the movie. During the interview Carson Daly asked Johnson, “Who in your inner circle is allowed to see this movie?” Johnson answered, “My friends, my sisters.”  Hesitating she added, “But I don’t want my parents to see it.” Savannah Guthrie cut short the awkward laughter concluding, “We can understand why.”

We all know why. We know why eBooks are safer than paperback. We know why Johnson, the lead actress, doesn’t want dad and mom to see her work. We understand the immature laughter of 1,000 movie watchers. We identify with it because we understand shame. Shame works like pain for the soul. It alerts us to the danger and harm caused by sin. Our culture is not losing its shame. It’s hiding it. Hiding shame is nothing new. We’re not that far from Eden.

The Christian response is not avoiding conversation about 50 Shades, but sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Son of God bore the shame of sin when he was crucified in plain view of his mother. By atoning for us Jesus offers forgiveness to sinners, and when you believe in his death and resurrection, shame disappears because the sin is expiated. No longer is there reason to hide shame in shades of grey.

Avoid the movie. Avoid the books. Skip the trailer during commercials. But be ready to speak the bold truth of the Gospel in this cultural conversation.

cross

Pastor Michael Wilburn


Preparing for Sunday’s Worship:

  • Sermon title and text: Israel: Judged for Idolatry/False Worship (Amos 4:1-13)
  • Sunday’s Scripture Reading – 1 John 5:18-21

ANNOUNCEMENTS AND UPDATES:

Churchwide Elder Fellowship – Around the World in 80 Minutes :   The next Churchwide Fellowship is on February 22 at 5:30 pm.  AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 MINUTES will be unique, engaging and well-worth your time.  As usual, we ask that you purchase tickets at the Welcome Center after AM service, so we can know how many to prepare for.  Tickets are $4/person or maximum of $20/family.  Plan ahead.  You don’t want to miss this!

Church Photo Directory – Plans are under way for a new pictorial directory with photography starting March 11, 2015. There is no cost to you or the church to have your portraits taken, and you will receive a complimentary 8×10 portrait and directory for participating.  You will be able to view your images immediately after you are photographed and additional portraits will be available to order.

  • You will be able to sign up for your photography session online at your convenience at www.immanuelbaptist.org [bottom of the construction page] and there will also be opportunities to sign-up after services beginning January 25.  Don’t forget to include your email address when you sign-up.  You’ll receive a reminder message about your appointment and a $10 coupon off any photography you purchase.  You may bring props if you would like (musical instrument, family Bible, a well behaved pet) and you will have an opportunity to have generational portraits of children, parents and grandparents taken.  Stop buy the sign up tables and pick up your 20% discount coupon off any purchase you make. 
  • Don’t Miss Out –Photography dates NOW include March 19, 20, 24 & 25 (2pm to 9pm) and <>March 21 (10 am to 5pm). Sign up at the Welcome Center – 1) after Sunday School, 2) after AM service and 3) before PM service! ***Except on Feb. 8, registration available online only***

Contact ibcphotodirectory@gmail.com if you have any questions.

lifetouch

Opportunities to serve in our Children’s ministry –  Are you looking for an opportunity to give back to others in a way that you have received from the Lord?  Our Children’s Program has some open spaces that maybe you could fill.

2015 Mission’s Trip – Camp Nathanael – Nestled in the mountains of Eastern Kentucky is Camp Nathanael.   We are preparing a team of 10-15 to help with general construction, brick laying and meal preparation in May (probable dates: May 3-9).  Some funds will need to be raised by each participant.  If you are interested, please contact Myron Saffritt (myronsafritt@centurylink.net) or Paul Dreiling (pdreiling@immanuelbaptist.org)

camp

New Library Hours – The library will be open for 20-30 minutes immediately following the evening service beginning on Sunday, February 1, 2015 and running through the month of March. If the trial is successful, these hours will become permanent. Because the Mizpah wing is not used on Sunday evenings, it will be necessary to leave the Thompson St. door locked.  If coming down the sidewalk, knock on the window to be let in.  Patrons may also go down the inside breezeway to the primary dept. across from the nursery, and go through the Mizpah room.  The library is on the other side of the swinging doorway. Hope to see you there.

Women’s Ministry Bible Study Jan 2014

Tami JonesWomen's Ministry

SermonOnTheMountWhat does it mean to be a citizen of the kingdom of Heaven? Matthew’s gospel opens with three chapters containing Jesus’ longest recorded message – a sermon given to His disciples early in His ministry to articulate what the life of a Christ-follower would look like. It was a message intended to turn upside down every expectation His closest followers might have. Both practical and profound, the sermon asks of us the same questions it posed to its original hearers: How should a disciple relate to sin? To others? To the Law? How does a disciple think, speak, and act? What is the nature of true righteousness?

Come join us as we delve into God’s Word and study one of Jesus’s most famous messages to His disciples and to us.

Friday Morning Study begins January 23 at 9:30 am in the Mizpah room. This group meets every other Friday morning.

Wednesday Night Bible study begins January 28 with a Kick Off Soup Dinner and will then meet weekly from 7:00 – 8:30 pm.

Registration will take place the first session of Bible study. Cost is $12.00

News – December 19th

Paul DreillingChurch News

Dear Immanuel family,

Yesterday I was invited over to my son’s house for dinner.  My granddaughter climbed up in my lap, looked up at me with those big blue eyes and then put her head down on my chest.  Although she can’t talk yet she was “communicating.”  It was one of those moments that happen on this side of heaven when we say, “It doesn’t get any better than this!”  It reminded me that some of the best gifts this Christmas will not be under the Christmas tree.

Certainly the greatest gift came that first Christmas.  Augustus’ decree sent everyone bustling back to their home towns for a census. The sleepy quaint town of Bethlehem was thriving with visitors who filled the streets and hotels to the max.  My mind can imagine the sounds and smells of food venders, people traveling on horseback or in ox carts, and even some like Mary and Joseph on donkeys.   To think that the creator of the universe stepped into time in such a lowly fashion is just beyond comprehension; an event largely unnoticed in Bethlehem except by a few shepherds and three wise men.

As Mary looked at those tiny hands, little did she know they would touch a leper’s open wound, wipe a widow’s tear, and be used to hold her son on Calvary’s cross.What a gift our Lord gave us.   We don’t have to wait for this gift.   “For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:17). The world received the greatest Gift ever: Jesus Christ.

Mary was given a gift – Jesus.
The shepherds were told where to find the gift – Jesus.
The wise men came bringing gifts – to Jesus.
Will you receive the Gift – of Jesus?

If you haven’t opened this gift yet, please do it now.   If you are interested see the attached “Romans Road.”

PSD

Preparing for Sunday Worship – Sunday’s Scripture Reading – Isaiah 42:1-9.  Message Title: Paul to Agrippa, Bernice and Festus – Acts 26:2-23.

Cookies for Inmates – Good News Jail & Prison Ministry will be distributing cookies to inmates at the Chesterfield County Jail for Christmas.  They can be any type of cookie; ones made from scratch, a mix or ones from the dairy case.  The cookies will need to be brought to the church by Sunday, December 21st. You may leave them in the Fellowship Hall kitchen or Naomi Corcoran’s office and be sure they are marked for Good News Jail Ministry.  If you have any questions, contact Chaplain John Corcoran .

Children’s Concert, Cookies, and Cocoa – Please remember that on Sundayevening, December 21st, the Children’s concert (voices and instruments), in the Fellowship Hall, will begin at 6:00 pm instead of the normal 6:30 pm.   The children participating in the program need to arrive at 5:00 pm.   Please come and enjoy a casual evening of singing and refreshments as we celebrate the Lord’s birth.

Clothes Closet Ministry – As you make room for your new Christmas gifts, please remember the Clothes Closet for any items you either don’t need or no longer want.  With this ongoing cold winter we are in need of warm clothing, coats, gloves, and leather shoes, especially in men’s sizes.  We are constantly in need of toiletries.  Presently, we are low on deodorant, disposable razors and toothpaste.  We are also looking for warm blankets.  Any help you could provide would be so appreciated by our Clothes Closet visitors!

News – December 12

Paul DreillingChurch News

Dear Immanuel Family,

What a joyous time is Christmas!  Over 2000 years ago, God dispatched the Son of the Trinity to earth to take on human form.  To do this, God chose a carpenter, Joseph and his wife, Mary, to be the parents of the Son of God.  The angel Gabriel approached Mary by saying, “Greetings, O favored one….” This greeting comes from the Greek word meaning “much grace.”  Mary was a righteous women favored by God, but she was a sinful person just like us in need of God’s grace.

Although she was not the Mother of God as some say, she was Jesus’ mother and the vessel by which “the Word became flesh.”  I love what Ephesians says – “He who descended is the one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things” (4:10) proving the pre-existence of Jesus.  The Lord God Almighty has no mother, since He has no beginning and no end (Genesis 1:1;Revelation 4:8).

On one occasion, Jesus was speaking and a woman in the crowd proclaimed,“Blessed is the womb that bore you, and the breasts at which you nursed!” What a perfect segue for Jesus to declare that Mary was worthy of praise and adoration.  How did Jesus respond?  He said, ““Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!”  Jesus Christ is the only human to ever deserve our worship.  The Bible says, “For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily” and that is worth celebrating this Christmas.

PSD

Sunday, December 14th – This Sunday during the 10:45 am service, the Immanuel Baptist adult choir will present its annual Christmas Concert “The Work of Christmas.” We are sure you will be blessed by this special presentation that includes 36 voices, a 10 piece orchestra, narration and congregational singing.

  • The Missionary Praise and Prayer lists will be available on tables around the sanctuary.
  • Pastor Wilburn will be back with us Sunday evening with a message “Come and Hear the Soul’s Testimony of God” from Psalm 66:16-20.

Cookies for Inmates – Good News Jail & Prison Ministry will be distributing cookies to inmates at the Chesterfield County Jail for Christmas.  They can be any type of cookie; ones made from scratch, a mix or ones from the dairy case.  The cookies will need to be brought to the church by Sunday, December 21st. You may leave them in the Fellowship Hall kitchen or Naomi Corcoran’s office and be sure they are marked for Good News Jail Ministry.  If you have any questions, contact Chaplain John Corcoran.

Upcoming Events:

Dec 17 – Churchwide Caroling in the neighborhood

Dec 21 – PM Children’s concert, Cookies and Cocoa

Dec 24 – Christmas Eve Candlelight service – Prelude 6:30