FBCP November 2015 Newsletter
Notes from Pastor Sam
Abraham is known as a man of faith
Being a friend of God has fringe benefits and he most certainly was, in fact it was this faith that led to him being called a friend of God. There were two recorded events however where Abraham seemed to have a crisis of faith or a failure to trust. It is interesting to contemplate God’s response to Abraham during these lapses in trust.
The fist was early in the relationship in Genesis chapter 12, Abram(as he was still called at this point) had exercised tremendous faith by leaving his comfort zone and going where God told him to go. But then there was a famine in the land and his faith waivers. He goes down to Egypt and lies about his wife Sarai, calling her his sister. Notice God’s response to Abram because of this failure, nothing, at least nothing directly to Abram. However He plagues Pharaoh greatly and it is Pharaoh that God uses to confront Abram. Pharaoh ends up losing out doubly because of Abrams sin in that not only is he plagued by God but he loses all the stuff he gave to Abram for Sarai who he didn’t even get to enjoy. Abram loses face and is embarrassed by his lack of faithNow fast forward to Genesis chapter 20. Abram has been given a new name Abraham and but he walks away with even more blessing. Godhas made a covenant with him. He has shown great acts of faith and Sarai has also been given the new name Sarah and has a child growing within her. However in Genesis chapter 20 we find Abraham doing almost the same thing he did back in Egypt. He gets afraid when staying with Abimelech and uses the same old lie about Sarah(who is not carrying his baby), “she is my sister”. Abimelech trusting Abrahams words takes Sarah into his house to become one of his wives. Suddenly all of Abimelechs wives and concubines are struck with barrenness and not able to conceive children. Abimelech inquires of the Lord as to why he is under this plague and God tells him about Sarah. Abimelech begs forgiveness and indicates that he has not yet touched Sarah. God tells Abimelech what to do
“Now therefore, restore the man's wife; for he is a prophet, and he will pray for you and you shall live.” Gen 20:7
This is amazing to me. God does not directly rebuke Abraham, but just like with Pharaoh uses Abimelech. Thistime however he makes Abraham exercise faith in praying for the plague of barrenness to be removed from Abimelech’s house. Abraham has to pray for God to remove the very thing that He had already removed from Sarah. Once again Abraham is embarrassed but this time has to exorcise faith. In the end he once again walks away with even more blessing and his greatest show of faith is still to come. Truly walking with God in faith and being His friend comes with fringe benefits, because He even turns our “mess ups” into opportunities to show His faithfulness and glory.
Operation Christmas Child (OCC)
OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD is off to a good start. At our first ever shoebox packing party we packed 56 boxes. Praise the Lord! We look forward to this next month collecting shoeboxes for children in need. You may use your own shoebox or one at the OCC table in the Atrium provided by a generous member. If you are interested in volunteering please contact Pam Wrobel for details at 872-2250.
We have enjoyed gathering together weekly to learn sign including worship songs. If this is something you are considering, please join us. Unlike schools we go at our own pace. While learning we have fun. Tuesdays at 6:30pm at the church. NOTE there is no class on the second Tuesday of the month.
Glen and Rita Chapman - These are days of major transition for the Chapmans in Kikongo. The Pastoral Training School is now "Baptist University in Congo", UNIBAC. This change will permit the school to serve its pastoral candidates more effectively in a time when being a village pastor does not provide a living for a pastor and his family. With the new programs at Kikongo their graduates will have the ability to work at professional jobs, such as teaching. The changes are already bearing fruit, with enrollment up from last year's six students (!!) to sixty men and women so far! Pray that God will overrule all of the conflict that has occurred around Kikongo in the last years and will enable this new program to prosper.For an interesting video on some of Glen Chapman's work
Shawn, Dee, and Pari Collins - The Collins are moving quickly forward with their move to New Mexico. Their home in North Carolina has sold and they have put a successful bid on a home in New Mexico. They will be leaving their friends, loved ones and established ministry in North Carolina for their new life partnering with the Deaf Bible Society (DBS). This moved was made necessary by shifts in the work of Wycliffe, and also due to the huge opportunity of partnering with DBS while still being under Wycliffe! Pray for their security in God during this time of major transition! Ed and Miriam Noyes - Ed is now on the Board of Directors of the new "Baptist University in Congo" in Kikongo! Miriam rejoices that literacy classes have finally been started in Maluku after 15 years of trying! Russell and Sharla Wiesner and family - In addition to their ministry work in Kuala Lumpur, the Wiesners face some of the same issues we do here on the Ridge, namely that the smoke from fires can render the air dangerous to breathe! This is the burning season in Malaysia, when the farmers burn forests to open more land for cultivation. Some of the fires get out-of-control and burn until the rains come! Pray for rain for Malaysia, as well as for our state of California. The church planting work is moving forward, with new people coming and being saved! The school is also doing well, with a growing number of students.
Jews for Jesus - With anti-semitism on the rise in Europe and in the United States Jews for Jesus is adjusting its activities to stand with the general Jewish community. In Paris the police advised greater security measures for the Jews for Jesus headquarters there, including barriers at the street and bulletproof glass. Pray for the safety of these Missionaries, but even more for their effectiveness in these times.
Mike Robinson, Missions Director
Adult Sunday School
The Wisdom of God - We are studying the scriptures to explore what God has disclosed to us about His wisdom. As Christians we can hold the correct view of truth when we dare to believe everything God has said about Himself. Knowing that the goodness of God desires the very best for us, that the wisdom of God has the perfect plan for us and that He has the power to achieve that plan, what do we lack? The Scriptures say that if any of us lacks wisdom, we are to ask God in faith and he will give it to us. Please join us each Sunday morning at 9:00 am as we learn together about this infinite attribute of God.
We are so thankful for our children and their staff. Many thanks to all who are volunteering to teach our children the truth of God's Word. It is so important today with all that is happening in the world that our children know the truth. If you would like to volunteer we do have a need so please fill out the children's volunteer form (at the Welcome Center) and turn in to the children's ministry box in the office. We could not do this without you. Proverbs 22:6.
Pam Wrobel, Director
Christmas Musical “A Stranded Christmas”
December 19 and 20
Children, adults, drama and music! Put the dates on your calendar now and watch the church bulletin for more information. For those singing in the choir or who would like to sing, the next choir practice will be Sunday, November 8 at 1:00 PM.
Annual Congregational Meeting & Luncheon
Congregational Meeting & Luncheon will be Sunday, December 13. It will be a planned potluck luncheon we can all enjoy as look back at 2015. Instead of preparing the tables for you this year we are inviting anyone in the congregation to decorate a table if you would like to do so. Juanita Grevalsky is signing up people now to decorate. Do this as a couple, as friends, or youth together. She also has some instructions to help you plan.
Food Pantry/Benevolence: Our food pantry is usually a busy place and we give out quite a lot of food items. You can help by bringing shelf items that are in-date. Even 2 or 3 items will help our pantry stay stocked. Put them in the large Pantry Box in the Atrium. You can also donate to the pantry using the giving envelopes in the pews. NOTE: Our food pantry will be closed on Wed., Nov 25.
Cornerstone Christian School
Our Fall Festival on October 23 was very successful and we thank everyone in the FBCP family who came and supported the students, families and school staff. This carnival-like event is always great fun. We are now looking forward to our Christmas program on December 11. Watch the church bulletin for updated information.
In this issue:
Birthdays & Anniversaries
2 C.J. Goodwin
14 Sue Wells
15 Zane Franks
16 Sunia Ashby
18 Joy Farnsworth
25 Mike Howard
5 Jim Lung
6 Jerry Bogner
10 Travis Barker
14 Jaden Walker
28 Linda Snow
31 Katie Webb
Nov 15 - Rick & Leslie
Dec 12 - John & Barbara
Dec 16 - Brent & Jill
Dec 29 - Jim & Diane Lung
Sunday Potluck Luncheon
Be sure to bring a hot dish, salad or dessert and join us for lunch this Sunday in the Family Life Center after the worship service.
The basket for cards or gifts to Pastor Sam and family is available again this Sunday, November 1st at the Welcome Center.
Women’s Ministry meeting is Tuesday, November 3 at 5:30 PM in the Prayer Room. Any woman who would like to join us in planning WM events is welcome!