It's not even April yet and already the rain is coming in heavy doses. Even the flowers in my yard seem to be saying, "Enough already!" Before we know it the temperatures will warm up, the sun will shine, the birds will be singing, and the bees will be making honey! Spring is in the air!
Sunday Morning - Search Party! We'll continue our study of the Lost and Found Luke 15 with the parable of the lost coin. (Click here for a preview.) Have you ever wondered why Jesus included this parable? The lost sheep is easy because we often consider Jesus as the Good Shepherd. The prodigal son makes sense as we often think of God as our Father. But the lost coin?
There could be lots of reasons to include this particular lost story - and we'll talk about a few on Sunday. My favorite theory, though, is that no one ever blames the coin for being lost. The lone sheep wandered away. The prodigal son was... well, prodigal. But the coin was lost due to someone else lost it. When we think of lost people sometimes we cast responsibility upon them for their own lostness. The lost coin reminds us that A) we are all lost, B) we were born that way and C) if we are found it's because of God's grace, which never gave up the search!
Invite SomeONE to Church Requel! Sunday we'll talk about 10 motivating reasons why we should never give up the search for lost people. Remember our lesson from last week - the most important number to God, when it comes to the LOST - is the number ONE.
Are you thinking of one person to whom you could extend an Easter invitation? Easter is only two weeks away from this coming Sunday. Your friends and family are more likely to say "yes" at this time of year IF you ask them.
Last Sunday we gave you invite cards. I hope you are using yours. This Sunday we'll be giving them out again. Let's take advantage of this opportunity!
Karen On The Job. Karen Jacob is now on the job officially as our Children's Ministry Director. One of the things I have learned to love about her in the brief time we have been able to work together is her resourcefulness. Sunday morning Karen taught our children about the Tower of Babel. She (and Ken) found all the left-over pew cushions and decided to build their own tower as an illustration. Way to go Karen!
We are looking for folks that love kids and want to help out once a month with our Church Requel students. If you have a passion to see our faith continue with the next generation, let Karen know. You can work with kids of any age group. Cindy (with the junior high age), Karen (with the primary age), or any of our Preschool volunteers would love to partner with you. Here is Karen's new email if you'd like to contact her.
Easter Egg Hunt - Help Wanted! Speaking of helping out with our students, we'd also love to have your assistance with Easter candy and Easter plastic eggs. Our Easter morning Easter Egg hunt has become a tradition at Church Requel. After our Easter morning worship we'll have the adults line the curbs and then release the children to find the eggs.
For them to have eggs to find, not to mention candy inside the eggs to find, we need you all to bring small candies and plastic eggs shells over the next couple of Sundays. Also after our Palm Sunday worship, we would like a few folks to stick around and help Karen put the candy inside the eggs.
Screen Sunday After Church! Another sure sign of Spring is that it's time to swap out our storm windows for screen windows at church. This means that soon we'll be able to slide the windows up and feel the cross breeze (not to mention better to hear the sirens!) Don and Adam are taking the lead Sunday after church, but they could always use some extra help. If you'd like to lend a hand just stick around when church is over. The more the merrier and the easier for everyone!
Our Students Lead Worship This Sunday! Speaking of volunteers, we are always so thankful on the first Sunday of each month, when our students help us to lead worship. This Sunday is no exception. Grayden and Cohen (pictured right) will be helping out their dad in the tech booth. Paityn and Leia will be singing with Mom and Grandma Cindy. Emma will share our announcements. And Noah & Elijah will team up to collect our tithes and offerings this Sunday!
We often say that - but cannot emphasize enough - our children are not only the church of tomorrow, but at Church Requel are also the church of today. My prayer is that when they all grow up they will have fond memories of their youth at church.
It's also one of the reasons why I love watching our greeting time each Sunday. I love it that our youngest members get to know and love our oldest members - and the other way round too. Church should be family more than organization.
Neighborhood Meal on April 8th. One more opportunity for us to serve as family members is to be the hands and feet of Jesus one week from tomorrow on April 8th, when we serve warm, free meals to our neighbors. Plan to arrive by 4pm to help serve the meal that begins at 5pm. Extra brownie points if you bring brownies... or any other dessert. This is also a great opportunity for our students to serve and to gain an appreciation for their own good fortunes.
Happy Birthday To My Dad! I've always tried to keep these weekly newsletters to you all as personal as I can make them. So here's my personal news this day... Today is my dad's 86th birthday! Yay Dad!!! I am so fortunate that Dad is healthy and active and still can tell the best stories. His stories have become my stories. "The birds are singing and the bees are making honey." That's all Dad.
Next weekend he is taking 4 generations of the Pierce family out to dinner - on his dime - to celebrate his birthday. Tonight he is coming down to Mansfield to "test out the restaurant" and Mary Kay and I get to go out with him to be "fellow testers and tasters." Gotta love it!
So today as I sign off this newsletter, I'll tell you what my dad always tells me when saying goodbye - "Remember - don't take 'no' for a final answer."
Love you all much! Pastor Mark