Christmas in the Park

2016-christmasinthepark2

Come join the fun!


kids-singingIt’s Florida and Jack Frost might not be nipping at your nose, but Christmas is in air.  Why not start the Christmas weekend with some good, family fun?

On Friday, December 23 at 7pm we will be celebrating Christmas (a few days early), singing Christmas carols, eating s’mores, and telling the story of Christmas.

Live Christmas music!!

The event will take place at the Wesley Chapel District Park at the large pavilion (by the playground).

 

Christmas in the Park is FREE and Everyone is invited!!

Bring the kids and come on out for a great time.

See you there!

wcdp-lg-pavilion-map

(Click for Google Maps)

Giving Tuesday…Help Us Reach Wesley Chapel

Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
– 2 Corinthians 9:6-7

Family of Christ North has the mission of reaching people in Wesley Chapel, FL, to minister to them in the name of Jesus Christ and make disciples.  Whether it’s feeding the homeless, visiting the sick, teaching and mentoring the youth, or reaching out to our neighbors with the Gospel, we seek to bring the light of Christ into people’s lives.

In this next year our goal is to impact over 1000 people through service and evangelism.  We are also planning several outreach activities, looking for a location that would give us 24/7 access, and much more.  We do this together with our time, our skills, and our resources.

Giving Tuesday
Tuesday, November 29th, is “Giving Tuesday.”  As you look for ways to give today and throughout the Christmas season, please remember to give to your family of faith.  Together, we will continue to shine the light of Christ to our community.

Giving Tuesday…Give to Your Church Ministry

Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
– 2 Corinthians 9:6-7

Family of Christ has the mission of ministering to others in the name of Jesus Christ.  Whether it’s feeding the homeless, visiting the sick, teaching and mentoring the youth, or reaching out to our neighbors with the Gospel, we seek to bring the light of Christ into people’s lives.

Last year, your gifts helped to make it possible to call a new youth director and start worship services for the new North Campus.  This year, we  are planning several outreach events and building the youth ministry.  We do this together with our time, our skills, and our resources.

Giving Tuesday
Tuesday, November 29th, is “Giving Tuesday.”  As you look for ways to give today and throughout the Christmas season, please remember to give to your family of faith.  Together, we will continue to shine the light of Christ to our community.

R.A.C.K.

The Women’s Ministry assembled Gift bags today for our
Random Acts of Christian Kindness (aka R.A.C.K.)

They will be distributed in our community on Saturday, Dec. 10, 2016.

If anyone would like to help distribute them, please contact
Sue Raymond (813) 994-8722
or
Ariana Afeldariana.afeld@crowncastle.com

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Victorian Christmas Stroll

On Sunday, December 11, 2016

all are invited to attend the

Victorian Christmas Stroll at the Henry B. Plant Museum.

Pastor Dave is taking everyone on the bus, after the late service.

The Women’s Ministry will serve a light lunch of sandwiches and drinks before we leave for the museum.

Ticket prices are $15 adult, $13 Senior, $9 Youth.
(to be paid at the museum)

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Advent Schedule

Central Campus

Advent Services will be held at 7 o’clock in the evening on:

Wednesday, November 30
Wednesday, December 7
Wednesday, December 14

Christmas Eve Services will be held on Saturday, December 24 at:

5:00pm Children’s Traditional Service
6:30pm Contemporary Candlelight Service
8:00pm Contemporary Candlelight Service

There will be no Spanish Service

10:00am Christmas Morning Service

West Campus

Advent Services will be held at 7 o’clock in the evening on:
Wednesday, November 30
Wednesday, December 7
Wednesday, December 14
Wednesday, December 21

Christmas Eve Services will be held on Saturday, December 24 at 7:00pm.

North Campus

Christmas in the Park on December 23 at 7:00pm
Christmas Eve Service on December 24 at 6:00pm

Advent by Candlelight

advent-candleYou are cordially invited to the annual
Advent by Candlelight Celebration

Let There Be Light
Jesus – Light of the World

Who: Women and girls ages 7 and up
When: Sunday, December 4, 2016
5:00pm – 7:00pm
Where: Family of Christ Sanctuary
16190 Bruce B Downs Blvd, Tampa, Florida 33647

This event includes a potluck dinner: Turkey, Ham, Water, Soda and Coffee will be provided.

Please bring a dish to share.

Please bring an ornament to trade at the ornament exchange.

Advent by Candlelight is an opportunity for women to set aside the hustle and bustle of holiday preparation and focus their minds and hearts on the birth of Christ. Beautiful decorations and fellowship provide a delightful atmosphere for the ladies to enjoy music, a worship service, and devotions by candlelight.

“Again Jesus spoke to them saying ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows Me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” – John 8:12

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Thankful Stewards

 

Praise the Lord o my soul, and forget not all his benefits – who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion.  (Psalm 103:2-4)

 

 

Thanksgiving is coming to a close and that full feeling is beginning to dissipate from eating a little more than usual.  Thankfully I have been getting a little more exercise in climbing a mountain yesterday, Camelback in Scottsdale, and the going into my favorite pit tomorrow at the Grand Canyon.  Mountains have always been places that bring a sense of the presence of God, think Mt. Sinai or the mountain where Jesus was changed in his appearance before the disciples.  What God always wants to do is elevate us to walk closer with him.

On this day of thanks we speak to God and say thanks but we also look to how we can be thankful.  Pray over the Consecrated Stewards cards that have been distributed in church (or print one here).  On this day especially we do not forget all of his benefits.

Pastor Dave

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God Promises His Grace Is Sufficient

2corinthians12_9“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
2 Corinthians 12:9

Have you done great things?  Do you have the perfect family?  Have you successfully avoided sin?  Have you had all your health troubles eliminated?  Have you always done your best and found great success in your job?

No?  Me either.

Yet, God promises,

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”

Just before today’s verse, Paul tells an interesting story.  First, he starts by not so subtly saying that he had been shown visions  and may have even been taken to heaven (kind of like John did in Revelation) and had heard amazing things he can’t even talk about.  Wow!  Paul’s pretty awesome right?  He’s a kinda super-Christian or something.

903164566_0c60f3b8b9_zBut then Paul continues saying that God had given him “a thorn was given [him] in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass [him].”  Paul says he asked…no pleaded with God three times to take it away and God said, “No.”  Man, for God to give Paul a thorn in the flesh like that and refuse to take it away…Paul must be some pathetic, loser-Christian or something.

The point is, Paul isn’t a super-Christian or a loser-Christian.  Paul has been called a child of God by the grace of God and that is enough.  In fact, as Christians, we are all called children of God by the grace of God.  No super-Christians or loser-Christians here.  Sometimes God calls us to things we might regard as amazing and sometimes he calls us to things that others would yawn at.  But neither is better than the other.  We are all solely called by the grace of God, not our own works.  In fact, it is in our weakness that God is glorified because instead of pointing to ourselves, we can only point to Christ.  It’s humbling at times and it’s reassuring all the time.

So, next time you look at your life and think, I wish I was more of a super-Christian like so-n-so or next time God doesn’t remove the thorn you’ve begged Him to remove, remember God’s promise.  His grace is sufficient for you.

Dear Jesus,

Sometimes life doesn’t go the way I want.  There are struggles and there are times I wish I doing more amazing things in Your name.  Thank you that it isn’t about whether I do great things, it’s about Your grace.  And thank You that I know when life has struggles I can still rest in knowing that Your grace is sufficient then, too.

Amen

Be Joyful Always

bejoyful

 

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

(1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)

The past few weeks I have put this passage in the order of service before Communion. It is one of my favorite bible passages. It packs so much content in a single sentence. I think that is why they divided this one sentence into three verses.

Joy is a part of life that God wants us to have in every situation and place. Being Joyful is different than being happy. The scripture never says being happy the same as being joyful. Jonah was happy when he was provided shade from a vine to protect him from the sun. Then a worm came the next day and killed the vine and Jonah was not happy. Happiness is based on present circumstances but joy is founded upon eternal blessings and relationships. Here in 2016 Cubs fans were happy when the Cubs won a game for the past 108 years, but they were joyful when they became World Series champions because that title will be with them always.

Joy comes the more time we spend in honest living with God, in honest speaking with God in prayer. That is why this passage then relates joy with prayer. God’s blessings and promises in Jesus are not here one day and gone the next, but forever. Prayer takes us out of the routine day and brings us into the presence of the eternal God, who is waiting to hear from us but even more wants to bring even more in knowledge and grace.

Finally, this passage asks us to give thanks, in every circumstance. Being thankful is one thing we do in the coming week. My prayer is that each of you have a week where you can reflect upon all of the blessings we have been given in every circumstance. That is what inspires us to give thanks as the people of God, which brings Joy, which turns hearts to God in prayer. Giving is an act that brings us outside ourselves to see others and even ourselves as God sees us.

Pastor Dave

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