WHY DO SOME ATTEND THE OPTIONAL WORSHIP SERVICES AND BIBLE CLASSES?

It has always been a struggle to get every member of the local church to attend all Bible classes and worship services. Yes, they will come to the A.M. worship service, but not to the other periods of Bible study and worship. When asked why, they will respond: “Those services are optional. They are not commanded by God.”

My question is: “If these are optional services, why do some people choose to attend them?”

Could it be their love for God? Could it be their love for truth? Could it be their love for worship? Could it be their desire for Christian fellowship? Could it be their level of Christian maturity? Could it be their hunger for spiritual things? Could it be their commitment to the local congregation? Could it be their desire to set a good Christian example? Could it be they long to grow in Christ? Could it be additional worship and study keep them faithful? Could it be they understand they are to be subject to the elders? Could it be they want to be like the first century Christians? Could it be they realize the need to sacrifice? Could it be a combination of these things and more? COULD BE!

Some Christians seem like they want to try to skim by when it comes to the final judgment. It is not about their heart, their faith, and their love for God. It is about doing just enough to get by. Their Christianity is not about a relationship with their Savior. Their Christianity is more about guilt, shame, and fear.

Personally, I love attending the “optional” things, including the various works of the church: VBS, gospel meetings, work days, clothing giveaways, men’s breakfasts, men’s days, etc. Why? I enjoy them because I realize the benefits I derive from participating in such works. I am the one blessed. Too, there is a deep sense of satisfaction in knowing that I have served my Lord by serving His church.

Yes, many believe that so many things the church does are optional. I also know some of my brethren who would say: “These are not as optional as some brethren might think they are.”

I am thankful that in most churches the majority of brethren are still interested in what some call “the optional” aspects of the church.

Victor Eskew Oceanside church of Christ, Atlantic Beach, FL

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WEEKLY NEWS, JANUARY 12, 2020

THANK YOU NOTES

To the Highland Lakes church of Christ,

I want to thank all of you for making me feel welcome here. I am sad to say, I am moving back to the Cleburne area, to be closer to my father. I will miss all of you here, Doug Pearce

EATING OUT TOGETHER

This enjoyable fellowship will continue in February. As before, the group will meet on every second Thursday of the month. Thursday, February 13th, is the date to meet at “Mama’s” in Burnett at about 5:30 pm. The sign-up sheet is on the table in the back of the auditorium.

SOUP LUNCHEON MINISTRY

This ministry will start up again on Wednesday, January 22nd, at 11:30 AM.

HELPING HANDS PANTRY

Needs Plastic Bags. Thank you!

BEAUTIFUL FOOTNOTES

Sylvester Imogoh – Nigeria End of Year letter

3 John (ESV) 5 “Beloved, it is a faithful thing you do in all your efforts for these brothers, strangers as they are”………. 8 “Therefore we ought to support people like these, that we may be fellow workers for the truth.”

Let us be mindful in prayer of all our fellow workers for the truth whom we help support, like brother Sylvester Imogoh in Nigeria who recently sent us an end of year letter. His letter will continue next week. For the elders, Ken D

END OF THE YEAR LETTER OF THANKS AND APPEAL

Dear Brethren,

It has been another wonderful year of services to the Lord our Master in His Kingdom! The year seems to have ended too fast, because it has been full of work and fruitful activities for us. Only in eternity may we know the full impact of all the efforts that you all have been putting into the gospel work In Nigeria. For these past many years, you have faithfully supported me and the work of evangelism in Nigeria and many other parts of Africa. To me you have been perfect in your love for me and for my family and in the ways that you have faithfully financed the BCC program and other works that I am involved in. You do not let me ask. I am grateful to you and to God who made it all possible. To Him be Glory, Praise and Honor in Jesus’ name. Amen

Sylvester and his family

My Dear Brethren, as the year draws close to an end in a few days, may I use this means to present to you some situations relating to our work here for your consideration and possible support in the future, please?

World Bible School Enrolment Fliers – For so many years now, you have provided funds for me to print these fliers with which we enroll more names for the Bible study program. As I told you in the past, they are not only being used for your work, but they are also used by other preachers and congregations across Nigeria who send them to other places in the US. Thus in that way alone, you are helping to facilitate the good work going on in so many parts of Nigeria. The year before last, you help us with which we printed 1000 copies of the fliers. We need to print more!

Other personal matters that I may need help for are:

  • My Health issues especially the need for me to buy gym equipment to enhance my health.
  • My Son’s Education in the University. You have helped me once. He is not yet graduated.
  • My Wife may need to have a surgery, because she has been having issues with bleeding and now a scan has shown that a tumor is growing in her. We ask for your prayers about this.

Thank You for prayerfully considering this appeal.

Yours In Christian Love and Services, Sylvester A Imogoh — December 17, 2019

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A NEW YEAR IS LIKE…

A day yet to dawn.

• A battle yet to be fought.

• A mountain yet to be climbed.

• A journey yet to be begun.

• A chapter yet to be written.

• A book yet to be read.

• A blank sheet yet to be filled.

• A new territory yet to be explored.

• A meal yet to be consumed.

• A race yet to be run.

• A game yet to be played.

• A task yet to be undertaken.

• A present yet to be opened.

• A sea yet to be crossed.

• A story yet to be told.

• A conversation yet to unfold.

• A sermon yet to be preached.

• A plan yet to be set in motion.

• A walk yet to be taken.

• A building yet to be constructed.

Seize it ; live it well!

“I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and course. Therefore choose life that you and your offspring may live, loving the Lord your God, obeying His voice and holding fast to Him…” (Deuteronomy 30:19-20a).

“…Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes” (James 4:14).

Lance Cordle, Calvert City,

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WEEKLY NEWS, JANUARY 5, 2019

HELPING HANDS PANTRY
Needs – Plastic Bags. Thank you for your support

WITH SYMPATHY
Several members of our congregation have lost loved ones in recent days.
Our prayers, love and sympathy are with all of them and their families

Kenneth Herring, 71 year old brother of Lea Anne Futrell, passed away, unexpectedly, on December 5th. Graveside services took place on Monday, December 30th at Mahomet Cemetery, Bertram, TX.

Thelma Thuleen’s brother, Ernest C. Macias, passed away on Sunday, December 29th, at age 96. Funeral services will take place on Wednesday, January 8th at the Clements Wilcox Funeral Home Chapel in Marble Falls, at 11:00 am. Interment will follow at the Lakeland Hills Cemetery in Burnet. Visitation will be the night before, on Tuesday, January 7th, at the Clements Wilcox Funeral Home Chapel from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm.

Montie L. Parker, the brother of Ramona Stacy, passed away on Monday, December 23rd. Graveside services were held under the direction of Clements-Wilcox Funeral Home on Friday, December 27th. Montie was almost 87 years old.

BEAUTIFUL FOOTNOTES

Welch’s Mission Cambodia – November 2019 Report

Dennis & Sharon Welch – Mission Cambodia News & Update: November 2019

We send warm greetings and blessings from beautiful Cambodia. We are so thankful for each of you who have followed, encouraged, prayed, visited (more visitors please) and supported the ministry work which continues to impact our lives as well as the lives of others here in Cambodia. You’re a wonderful reflection of God’s special love. Thank you.

Our news starts off with a report from the “Seeking after God’s heart; doing the will of the Father” seminar in Battambang, Cambodia. Each speaker was given a scripture which included a phrase about the will of God. Dennis used this as an opportunity to utilize the adult learning principles he’s learned through his coach training to help each of the 70+ participants own their learning from the text. It was so fun to catalyze and then witness these lovely brethren unite in spirit to do the will of the Father as they grasped the meaning of 1 Peter 2:11-17.

Sharon had an amazing experience attending the “Come Before Winter” (CBW) women’s renewal retreat in Chiang Mai, Thailand. This year’s text was the book of Exodus with the theme of “Will you meet with Me.” About 70 sweet sisters enjoyed five days of wonderful experiences of renewal, great fellowship, prayer time and worship. Furthermore, the staff of this CBW prepared excellent Bible studies and activities as the ladies looked at various ways to study texts, plus different styles of making application in our daily livesSome of you know that we are relocating to Kampot, Cambodia to begin ministry and build a house on some land (a 2.3 acre durian fruit tree farm) in the countryside. It is a quiet, picturesque setting on a large stream with mountains nearby, yet only 20 minutes from the city where we hope to begin new ministry.

We have found a rental house in the city and have moved to Kampot to begin ministry and oversee the construction on the property. We’re both eager and excited to get started building relationships in the community, discover where God is already working, and listening for the Spir-it of God to direct our steps forward. We ask that you go with us in spirit, prayer and support. We are not yet sure what ministry will look like in Kampot. There are ethnic Khmers, Chams and Chinese, all Cambodians living there who are Buddhists, Muslims and Animists. We’re already praying that the Lord will lead us to the perfect works that match our giftings, abilities and experiences. We are confident you will join that prayer.

With eternal love and blessings,
Dennis & Sharon
P.S. We are indeed thankful for you and wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We hope it is filled with the 4 F’s, family, food, fellowship and fun.

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NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS

Yes, it’s that time again.

It is the time of year when we usually commit ourselves to several worthy goals. We do this because we want to make our lives and faith better. We want to improve and that is a worthy goal. I have noticed that most of our resolutions revolve around money, health, and family.

While these are worthy goals, what would it look like if we could set the resolutions for the church or our family? I would venture to say that we would set a much more rounded, holistic set of resolutions. As I reflected on this question, I came up with a list that I think is a good start. It is not perfect by any means but these are the things I would like to see myself and others focus on.

Pray more – 1 Thessalonians 5:17. • Invest in our God-given talents – 1 Timothy 4:14-15; Matthew 25:14-30. • Get more intentional about evangelism – 1 Corinthians 9:19-23. • Care for ourselves spiritually – Philippians 3:12-16; Mark 6:31; Exodus 20:8-11. • Be willing to make the tough decisions – Acts 20:22-24. • Confront the sin in our life – Heb. 12:1-2. • Be forgiving of others and self – Matthew 6:14-15. • Love people without boundaries – 1 Corinthians 13:1-3. • Quit comparing ourselves to others – John 21:20-23; 2 Corinthians 10:12. • Read more – 2 Timothy 4:9,13. • Make family a priority – Colossians 3:18-21. • Stay focused on the Lord and His church – Acts 2:42-47. • Continue to grow – Ephesians 4:15-16; 2 Peter 3:17-17 • Treat others like we would like to be treated – Matthew 7:12; Isaiah 1:16-17. • Seek heavenly things above all else – Colossians 3:1-2.

This is a difficult list that could take a lifetime to master, and yet we are called to be Christ-like in every aspect of our life. Let’s use our resolutions to ensure that we become the best Christian possible. – Jeff Arnette, Clyde, NC

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WEEKLY NEWS, DECEMBER 29, 2019

HELPING HANDS PANTRY
Needs – Plastic bags, shampoo, bath soap, tooth brushes & paste
THANK YOU

BEAUTIFUL FOOTNOTES

Adventures in Missions – Kaylee Hankins

We hope that you got the opportunity to meet Kaylee Hankins who visited Sunday morning last week. We help support Kaylee in the AIM program. These photos of Kaylee and her three teammates below may help you see the emotions they went through recently learning that they will be going next summer for extended mission service in the nation of New Zealand. Let us keep Kaylee and the team in our prayers as they continue to prepare for their Adventure In Missions. For the elders, Ken D

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HOLIDAY WISHES

Happy and Safe Holidays To all and Best wishes for a

Healthy and Blessed 2020

From the elders, deacons, building staff, worship leader and their spouses:

Ken & Gail Darnell
Troy & Leana Futrell
Cary & Brenda Miller
Joe & Teri Winnett
Bob & Doris Foster
Billy Hazlewood
Henry & Mary Kattner
Don & Paula Welch
David & Sheri Zoller
Helga & Bill Blackstone
Esmeralda Medina
Sherry Wills & Ken
John & Tina Brewer

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