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5-18-21 FUMC Updates … lots of important information!

How exciting to see more and more people coming back to church and worshipping on Sunday with Adler and Hearne was wonderful!  We talked about Pentecost this past Sunday and we’ll continue to talk about the Holy Spirit in the next few weeks, so THANK YOU Pastor Sue Gross, who sits on our Church Leadership Council, for writing this devotional for us based on Acts 1:4-8.

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Have you ever felt inadequate to live the Christian life? If so, then you are exactly where God wants you to be because you have discovered a vital truth: No one has the power in him- or herself to live a holy life. We are all in the same boat, but there is someone else with us who has the power we need—the Holy Spirit.

When Jesus gave His disciples the task of preaching the gospel to the entire world, they had absolutely no ability to carry it out. That’s why He told them to wait until the Holy Spirit came. In the same way, if we hope to accomplish what God desires in our life, we need to live with full dependence on the Third Person of the Godhead.

The power of the Spirit is God’s divine energy and authority released in believers’ lives for the purpose of righteous living and fruitful service. When we walk in the Spirit, we’re relying on His strength to accomplish God’s will. As a result, we experience the following benefits:

  • We may get tired, but we won’t burn out.
  • We’ll trust God instead of trying to manipulate our circumstances.
  • We may experience distress, but we won’t become desperate.
  • We won’t become overwhelmed with discouragement or obstacles, knowing the Spirit within us will enable us to do what He’s called us to accomplish.
When we do God’s work by His strength, in His way, and with His wisdom, we’ll be blessed no matter what goes on around us. Walking in the Spirit doesn’t mean life will be easy—but we never have to walk through it alone, because our Helper is always with us.
 
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THANKS TO YOU ALL who have said, “I’ll do it!  This is my church!”

–         I was so proud of SO MANY from our church last night!  Our church hosted the Lady Raiders GIRL’S SOFTBALL banquet in the FLC, and everyone worked so hard to be excellent organizers, media consultants, hosts, cooks, and bakers!  This Friday night, the BOYS BASEBALL team will be celebrating with us and if you could come after 7 to help us clean up and rearrange the tables, that would be a big help!

–         I also want to thank our VACCINE CLINIC volunteers … those of you who brought snacks and water, those of you who greeted people as they arrived!  I heard Bettye Gilbert say she saw LOTS of people come that she had never seen before and that’s exactly why we do these kinds of things … to let people know we’re here and our hearts for our community! Our last clinic on the calendar is tomorrow so thanks again to those of you who helped!

CHILDREN’S MINISTRY UPDATES:  Thanks to everyone who stayed for our brief CHILDREN’S MINISTRY updates after church on Sunday!  I always know when we’re on the right track because the Holy Spirit blesses us with enthusiasm, willingness, and resources to achieve our most important mission of MAKING DISCIPLESand our children are WORTH our efforts!!

  1. We are a MINISTRY SAFE church … this means that we take VERY seriously the safety of our children and our volunteers who work with them! ANY adult who will supervise or be engaged in ANY way with our kids will be trained and have a background check so parents will know we are diligent in our ministry to children. We always, for example, want to have 2 adults working together when serving our kids, and sometimes, that means all you have to do is be present and show you care! Being a Ministry Safe Church is so important to us that the North Texas Conference pays for the Ministry Safe Training (a series of 4 short videos, done online in your home) and we pay for the background checks. This also protects you, our volunteers!  Please get certified to serve our children – there will be lots of ways to serve and ALL tasks are important! (CLICK HERE) PLEASE REPLY TO THIS IF YOU’D LIKE TO GET PLUGGED INTO THIS EXCITING NEW MINISTRY!
  1. Searching for a Children’s Leader: Job Description (CLICK HERE) … this is a position we approved and had budgeted for the beginning of 2021 but are just now far enough out of COVID that we feel we can safely move forward, full steam ahead!  Who do you know that loves Jesus, loves kids, is creative, and can give 20 hours a week to this especially important position?  The job description is on the website if you want to refer people to our KIDS page
  1. Children’s Church, those finished 2 – 6 grades is starting back Sundays, June 13th, 10:45 – NOON … we are moving toward including younger grades but for now, the children will be back in Wesley Hall for time to learn age-appropriate Bible study for their age group.  Again, we need your help to support Paige in the supervision and maybe even taking part of the group to make the lesson more directed to older/younger ages.
  1. Parents’ Night Out, Friday, June 4th, 6 – 9 pm … see the flyer (CLICK HERE) that will be sent home to ALL WISD kids who have COMPLETED grades K through 6.  We are all going to work with the parents in our church to serve OTHERS this summer .. THIS IS AN OUTREACH EFFORT to meet new families who do not have a church home!  Yes, we hope LOTS of kids will come but we are not trying to take kids away from their home church, we are trying to SERVE! We will serve hot dogs, provide a craft, games, and even have a bounce house and there will be LOTS of ways you can do a LITTLE something (CLICK HERE).

 

WE NEED YOUR OLD SHIRTS: the 1st craft we’ll be making is SLIME so we’re collecting old shirts to use for any messy craft or science experiments!

SOCIAL MEDIA: please post on your pages to share with your friends! Please start watching our social media accounts (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter all at FUMCwinnsboro) for all the exciting updates we are planning! This is a modern-day form of EVANGELISM because when you share what’s going on at your church, other people see it!  This is the beauty of multiplication on social media so please share!

LAST BIBLE TALK THIS WEDNESDAY, 5/19, 10 am, Wesley Hall … 2 years ago I started BIBLE TALK, an in-depth Bible study to dig deep into what I felt were the most influential, interconnectional chapters of the Bible. We worked through all 4 sections of the Bible, what I call the 4 Cs: Creation, Covenant, Old Testament, and Christ and the Church, New Testament (almost ALL on ZOOM!) and in these 48 stand-alone chapters, I personally learned so much!  This Wednesday we’ll end our study with 1 JOHN 3: WE’RE PART OF THE FAMILY! 

The Prayer Quilt Ministry SEW DAY, Wed. 5/26, 9 am – 3 pm … join the prayer quilt ministry to either (1) sew on your own project or (2) or get help to get started learning how to piece a quilt top and we will provide the fabric and teach you how!  We also have a cutting table and an ironing station, but you will need to bring your own sewing machine.  Beginners and seasoned “sewists” are all welcome!  Contact Amy Moss if you would like to come and coffee, donuts, and a light lunch will be provided.  If you would like to be a part of a similar group, but can’t meet on a weekday, contact Amy about the possibility of an evening get-together or a Saturday sew day.

SUNDAY, MAY 23, 3 PM, East District UMC Annual Meeting, LIVE on Facebook … while Ted Haynes, Lay Leader, and I will be on a ZOOM meeting for voting purpose, if you’d like to see the plans that go into getting ready for the North Texas annual conference, (June 14-16), you are welcome to watch!  https://www.facebook.com/NTCEastDistrict

FRIDAY NIGHT, MAY 28th, WISD HIS GRADUATION, 6 – 8 pm … come hand out water bottles with us!  We especially want our kids to help and all you have to do is show up!!  Contact KEN RAGSDALE if you have questions.

Once again, thanks to ALL of you who said, “I’ll do it! This is my church” …

So don’t hide your light! Let it shine brightly before others, so that the commendable things you do will shine as light upon them, and then they will give their praise to your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:16

PRAY FOR OUR CHILDREN’S MINISTRY!
Pastor Debbie


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5-3-21 FUMC Updates

This past Sunday Mary White said, “I’ll do it! This is my church!” and she played beautiful music for us in worship with Shannon Monk and Geoff Sharp!  This response to things that need to be done in the church has been resonating with me for a few weeks now and as I look around at all our beautiful buildings, and all the exciting opportunities we will have to make disciples for Jesus Christ, I know we will all need to claim something that we can do for God’s church!

I want to thank the generous people who have volunteered to take care of the fluorescent bulbs AND who will be power washing the buildings in the next few weeks … WE ARE GRATEFUL TO YOU!  It doesn’t take much to do SOMETHING, for example …

… if you park in the grass lot in front of the Baptist church, bring a few wet paper towels this Sunday and wash down the signs that say First UMC Parking that are so dirty you can’t read them.

… if you see weeds n the flower beds, or between the concrete, pull them!

… can you do simple work with Excel?  We have a license to play music online, but we need to report the songs that are not part of the public domain … can you help me?

Sometimes what seem like insignificant tasks have impact on people you would never imagine!  And this is what drew me to a recent article about a woman named Frances Angermayer.  One hot June night in 1943, worried about the war, Frances couldn’t sleep because she was praying for her stepbrother Glenn who was stationed in the South Pacific. After tossing & turning, she got out of bed and sat down in front of her typewriter thinking about how soldiers facing death would feel, especially if they didn’t know God. 

She said: “I placed myself in such a situation, and the words of ‘Conversion’ came to me” and 20 minutes later, the first draft of “A Soldier’s Conversion” was on paper. It was about a soldier’s encounter with God on the eve of battle, and here is a portion of what she wrote …

Look, God, I have never spoken to You —
But now — I want to say, “How do You do.”
You see, God, they told me You didn’t exist —
And like a fool — I believed all of this.
Last night from a shell hole I saw Your sky —
I figured right then they had told me a lie. …
Funny — I had to come to this hellish place,
Before I had the time to see Your face. … 
I guess the “zero hour” will soon be here,
But I’m not afraid since I know You’re near. … 
Well, I will have to go now, God — good-by!
Strange — since I met You — I’m not afraid to die.

SEE THE END OF THIS MESSAGE FOR THE REST OF THE STORY …

WE’RE MAKING FEWER ANNOUNCEMENTS IN CHURCH: As you know, we have lots of ways to communicate and we are going to use LESS time in the few sacred moments we have in worship for announcements because you can find information in LOTS of places!  The ongoing weekly events you can find on the calendar but we will announce new or SPECIAL events.  Please like, share, and comment on our posts so YOUR friends see what’s going on here … we want to meet LOTS of new people and your posts can help spread the word!  All of our social media accounts are easy to find!

–          Weekly Email (also on the home page of the website … https://www.fumcwinnsboro.com/)

–           Calendar …https://www.fumcwinnsboro.com/calendar-of-events/

–           Facebook …https://www.facebook.com/FUMCWinnsboro

–          Instagram … https://www.instagram.com/firstmethodistwinnsboro/

–          Twitter … https://twitter.com/FumcWinnsboro

BIBLE TALK, Wednesday, May 5th, 10 am – 11:30, Wesley Hall or on ZOOM … this week we’re digging into the Spirit-filled text of Galatians 5 and asking the question, Can God Change Our Character?  If you’re watching on ZOOM you can get the link on the website calendar

WEDNESDAY NIGHT FELLOWSHIP MEALS RESUME THIS WEEK, May 6, 6 PM … we hope to see everyone out for a fabulous homemade dinner of smothered pork chops, beans and rice!  Thanks to our kitchen crew, our dessert makers, and to all of YOU for your love offerings!

NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER, THURSDAY, May 6th, NOON – 1 pm at the Civic Center Auditorium … please come join me for one hour of prayer as the Pastors in the Ministerial Alliance gather to lead the community through individual prayer stations as well as communal prayer together.  (PRAYER GUIDE CLICK HERE)

THE KNITTERS, CROCHETERS & STITCHERS ARE BACK!  Every Monday, 1-3 PM, Family Life Center … looking for a place to knit, stitch and talk at the same time?  Come be part of the fellowship and bring your projects with you! Contact Sarah Hays if you have questions!

CRAFTERS meet Every Tuesday, 9 am, Asbury Hall … Christmas in the Park comes in November so start working on your crafts at home or come for the fellowship!  Contact Carla Chitsey if you have questions.

THIS SUNDAY IS MOTHER’S DAY – I look forward to seeing lots of our families together and if you’re traveling, I wish you safe and joyful travels!

Happy Mother’s Day!

Pastor Debbie

 

Over the years, the poem found its way into magazines, sermon illustrations, radio broadcasts, newspaper columns, including The New York Times and the Hebrew Chronicle, and even the Congress of the United States, often without attribution or remuneration, under various titles, such as “Poem Echo in Foxhole.” The poem made its way into the hands and hearts, pockets, barracks, and foxholes of an estimated 6 million soldiers in Africa, Asia, the South Pacific, the Aleutian Islands, and Europe. It was translated into several languages and became known as “the poem heard ’round the world.” 

On D-Day, June 6, 1944, a Catholic chaplain found 30 copies on the bodies of the injured and the dead on the beaches of Normandy. It was even found in Buchenwald, the Nazi concentration camp, and on the body of a dead Nazi soldier in northeastern France. One soldier at the Battle of the Bulge wrote: “I came across your poem just today. By tonight it had found its way to every man within the company — and left its mark. Men have died near me, men will die in the future, perhaps myself — but I know this, the thought you have left with us will last beyond whatever may come in the future.”

“Even now,” the poet reflected 13 years later, “it is impossible for me to believe I wrote a poem that meant so much to so many.”

Have you considered how it’s sometimes such LITTLE things that you can do that make a difference?

Consider the seven men who were appointed to assist with fair distribution of food in the early church. The 12 apostles were spending their time praying and preaching the word of God, but they knew how important it was to Jesus to care for the needs of those around them. After all, they had served the hungry before (5,000 in one case and 4,000 in another, plus women and children, (MT 14:13-21,15:32-38). So, they encouraged others to get involved:

What [the Twelve] said pleased the whole community, and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, together with Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch. They had these men stand before the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them. The word of God continued to spread; the number of the disciples increased greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith. Acts 6:5-7.

Guess what happened? The seven chosen for this ministry proved to be more than fillers of food boxes and organizers of soup kitchens, by getting involved in serving, their service was CONTAGIOUS, and others began to serve also!  Guess what happened? The seven chosen for this ministry proved to be more than fillers of food boxes and organizers of soup kitchens, by getting involved in serving, their service was CONTAGIOUS, and others began to serve also! 

Frances Angermayer was a shy secretary in a physician’s office her entire working career and while she did her job faithfully, she would NEVER have become a public speaker for the Lord like Stephen or Phillip! Yet God used her simple writing to do amazing things!

Whatever little thing you can do please don’t underestimate the impact it can have on someone else! Someone new to our church who drives around looking for a place to park and then SEES the sign that says there’s parking right across from the front door of the church may find a home here at FUMC!  Someone else might see how beautiful our grounds are cared for and think, “Hmm, this is a church that takes care of their property!”, and helping your Pastor with something she’s not very good at like spreadsheets?  Well, let’s just say I know my gratitude in ALL these things will be contagious!

In his book, Buck Naked Faith: A Brutally Honest Look at Stunted Christianity, Eric Sandras suggests: “There’s a big difference between asking God to be a part of our story and our becoming a part of his. Ask Jesus to give you eyes to see something he is doing this week that you can be a part of. No matter how large or small it appears, commit to be obedient. You may have to step out of your routine.”


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