Hello Church Family,
I hope you’re having a great week! November is in full swing and the holidays are on the way. As a pastor, I usually break up the calendar into four seasons. I know that normal people probably don’t think of the seasons in this way but it seems like, in church world, the seasons break down as follows.
December, January & February = Winter
March, April & May = Spring
June, July & August = Summer
September, October & November = Fall
I guess that break down is pretty close to how most people think of the seasons in a year. In church life, it seems like different big blocks always fall in particular seasons. For example, in December, January & February we celebrate Advent, give towards our World Missions Offering and take on a fresh start to a new year (almost always with a “new” sermon series. hahaha). We also usually have a small team go to India for our Embrace India initiative.
March, April & May are usually what I consider the run up to Easter. We take our Spring Break mission trip. For the past couple of years this is the season in which we renew our commitment to the 2020 Vision, reflect deeply on the meaning of the cross and celebrate the resurrection life we have in Christ. Those last few weeks in May transition us into the summer.
Summer time is always the busiest time in our church. During June, July & August we have tons of mission trips, camps, Vacation Bible School and Monday Night for the Master. You’d think we’d be ready to slow down by the time June arrives but that’s rarely the case. The dawn of August brings with it the dawn of a new school semester and a new season in church life as well. This is usually accompanied by strategic planning and personal preparation for the “fall launch.”
September is one of the most well attended months of the year. Large groups of people “come back to church.” Many guests will check out the church for the first time. There’s usually a new sermon series and a fresh energy throughout our congregation. We also usually take some additional international mission trips during this season. By the time you start to get in the groove, October is already over and it’s time to prepare for Thanksgiving.
Every November our church hosts a church-wide Thanksgiving service and meal. This year is no different and it’s one of my favorite times of the year. Both campuses come together, we pack out the Worship Center and we testify to one another about the goodness of God in our lives and in our local church. I always leave encouraged and comatose from the Tryptophan in the Turkey.
This year, our Thanksgiving service is going to be on November 19th. The service begins at 5:30. We will share testimonies, sing a few songs, and be encouraged by the grace of God. Afterward, we’ll line up and fill our plates with a delicious Thanksgiving meal. (usually there is turkey, ham and dressing along with a host of sides.)
You’ll get more information about this on Sunday but any help you can offer would be appreciated. Many of you have already donated turkeys or hams. Depending on the first letter in your last name, you can also assist with desserts (A-I), vegetables (J-R) and salads (S-Z). I hope you’ll make plans to join us! It’s going to be an awesome evening of fellowship and encouragement.
The following week we will kick-off our season of Advent. We did this last year and got a great response from the families who engaged with the devotionals and concepts behind Advent. This year, our theme is “The Gifts of Christmas.” We will celebrate the hope, love, joy and peace that Jesus brought in his first coming while anticipating with great expectation the day that He will come again.
It’s a great time to focus yourself on the Lord and lead your family in understanding to true meaning of Christmas. It’s also one of the BEST times to invite a friend to church. Since Christmas Eve falls on a Sunday this year, we’re going to try our best to make it really easy for you to invite your friends to our Candlelight Services.
I hope you’re getting excited! I know I am. That’s all from me for now. I hope you have a great rest of your week! If I can pray for you in anyway please let me know.