We have arrived at Easter. We gather together on Thursday to remember the Last Supper, we gather at the cross on Friday, and then on Sunday, it’s resurrection!
People will come, people will come to hear about the risen Savior. People will come who may be hurting, in need to hear the Good News maybe for the first time in their lives.
My hope is that when those coming to hear the Good News on Easter, they are welcomed with open arms, with smiles, and with the radical hospitality that we are building here at First United Methodist Church of Royse City.
In previous appointments, I was intentional in lifting up other churches in the community to let them know that they have a partner in ministry with me. Each week I would send a card to a different congregation letting them know that they were being lifted up in prayer. That the work they did was important and that I didn’t see them as competition but as partners in the sharing the gospel in the community.
I invite you to pray for these congregation too! Each week in the bulletin, you will see a Royse City area church lifted up. Please be in prayer for that pastor and congregation.
So when you are taking time out of your day to lift up our church, just remember the other sister and brothers in our community and say a quick prayer for them too.
Thank you for all you do to share the love of Christ with each other and with our community!
and authority will be on his shoulders.
He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.”
Isaiah 9:6 (CEB)
Tracy and I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas. We have been blessed by your outpouring of love and support over the past six months, and we look forward to seeing what God has in store for us in 2017.
We do this because of a promise. The promise from Isaiah 9:6 reminds us that Christ came for us. That blessing that was born in Bethlehem wasn’t just for a select few, but he was born for everyone.
That is why this season is so important. As ones in who Christ dwells and delights, we are called to be a blessing to others. We are called to bear the light of Christ in our lives so others can see God’s love in us.
This Saturday, you are invited to join us for our Christmas Candlelight/Communion service at either 7 or 11 pm. We will tell the story of the nativity, sing traditional carols, and then participate in spreading the light of Christ around the sanctuary as a reminder of how the light and love of Jesus Christ spreads around the world.
But our celebration doesn’t end there. Sunday morning, we will gather again at 11 am to gather as brothers and sisters to proclaim the birth of the Christ child. We will bless our reverse advent boxes (it’s not too late to participate) sing more carols, and celebrate the hope, peace, joy and love that comes through the Christ Child.
Once again, Tracy and I hope that you have a blessed Christmas celebration, and we look forward to seeing all of our First United Methodist Church during our Christmas celebrations!
Growing up, I loved turning on my local PBS to watch a painter named Bob Ross. You can imagine my geeky joy when last June Netflix added several episodes of Bob Ross’s show “The Joy of Painting” to their streaming service. I’ve watched most of the episodes on Netflix now, and I’m still amazed at what Bob Ross was able to do in less than 30 minutes.
If you are not familiar with Bob Ross, he was a painting genius! It could be a majestic sunset, a pastoral lakeside scene next to a cabin, or a breathtaking mountainscape. It never failed, Bob Ross always delivered a masterpiece and once the show was over, you had a completed painting.
That is what we have been doing over the past four weeks; we’ve been painting a picture. This picture shows the life and ministry of First United Methodist Church in Royse City. This picture shows how we have impacted lives within our congregation and our community. This picture gives us a glimpse of the great things we have done in the past, but it also allows us to see what God can do in the future!
This Sunday is Commitment Sunday. The church is asking you to help with this painting. It is through your tithes and offerings we can do the ministry that introduces people to the love and grace of Jesus Christ. It is through your prayers, presence, service and witness that embodies the love of Christ for our children, youth, and guests.
Following the sermon, you will have the opportunity to place your giving and service cards in a basket next to the altar. If you haven’t had a chance to pick one up, we will have extra available at the entrances of the sanctuary for you to pick up.
I’m excited about this Sunday! I’m excited about what God is doing at First Royse City. I’m excited to be in partnership with you as we continue to be a place where God’s love and grace is proclaimed, and lives are changed.
Over the past couple of weeks, you may have heard about our church participating in Phase 2 of the Healthy Church Initiative. Last year, 12 members of our church participated in Phase 1 which included reading different books, attending wokshops, begin looking at our community and seeing how we can reach out to our mission field.
Now it is your turn. We need all of our members to take an online survey which you can find here.
Here in a couple of weeks, we will have some computers set up in Wesley Hall for those who do not have computer access to fill out this important survey. We hope that you will take the opportunity to complete this survey so we can gather more information to make our consultation period valuable.
Just a reminder, this online survey is completely confidential, and the results will help the consultation team when they write our prescriptions for the future.
I’m excited to see what we will learn from this Congregational Survey and I want to thank you in advance for taking a moment to fill it out.
See you on Sunday!