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28
January 28, 2019

Yesterday was . . . another good day. Some might wonder how I can suggest that it was a good day when there were only a few of us in service again. If our focus is on the number of people who attended then the question is a good one. If having a large congregation is our main concern then we are definitely doing things wrong. If having a large congregation is our main concern then when people come to me and say that they don't get along with their pastor or with some of the people in their current congregation and wonder if they can join our church [as has happened] then they should be welcomed with open arms. Come, join us, I should say; bring your family, bring your talents, bring your tithe! And our sanctuary would be a little fuller every Sunday.

Instead, I encourage people to talk with those they are in conflict with. To try to resolve the problems. To be Christ-like in approach and attitude and relationship. It seems that they have done that. They have continued to attend "their" church rather than "ours". So our attendance numbers are low [this has been a nasty year, weather-wise]. But the spirit in our services is amazing. We may not have critical mass, but we have an empowered enthusiasm . . . and [as Richard Foster puts it] Spirit touches spirit.So yesterday was another good day. Our worship team lead with enthusiasm and power. In fact, the team is becoming more involved in the arranging of the service . . . in song selection and in order of service. I thank you for your patience of and support for them, as they continue to learn to serve. Pray for each member of the team . . . and let's gather expecting something great from God's Spirit next Sunday.Yesterday we continued our study of the Covenants of the Old Testament. We looked briefly at the strange questions that God asked Abram: can you count stars? Or the grains of sand . . . can you count them? And at the covenant made to a one hundred year old man that he would have innumerable descendants. Abram was flabbergasted . . . but God promised . . . and that was enough.So Abram packed up, picked up, and moved on [I missed the opportunity to use a picture of The Beverly Hillbillies in our slide show!]. It would not have been easy for Abram to move from comfort and family, but he did because God called him. And we must ask ourselves how willing we are to listen to God and to obey Him, even when what He asks is difficult. Click here to download and to read our message . . . which also included thoughts on the themes of [anti-] immigration and [anti-] Semitism . . . and being pro-Jesus. We also referenced Nazarene Missionary royalty – a title the Schmelzenbachs, who we referred to, would be embarrassed to be given. Click here to discover more about Harmon "the original" and click hereto hear one of Harmon III's sermons [prepare to be inspired!].

And remember – as Lynn Austin wrote, Often, it's not one great, dramatic thing that God asks us to do but hundreds of little everyday things. If we want to be used by Him, if we're ready to be used and aren't all tangled up with your own plans and projects, then He'll show us the work He has for us.

As we continue our winter series this coming Sunday we'll look at the Mosaic – or Sinai – covenant. A conditional covenant, Clayton Kraby suggests that Exodus 19-24 is key to understanding both redemptive history and the history of Israel as a nation. Spoiler alert: the people of Israel failed miserably in their attempt to follow through on their responsibilities under the covenant

 . . . yet God kept encouraging – and loving – them!                    

Stay for our monthly coffee-fellowship time following our service . . . an unhurried time to visit and catch up with one another. Oh . . . and why not bring your own mug along? It's a small thing, but "own mugs" means that there won't be more Styrofoam™ in the landfill site.A team of Canada Central district leaders [including our District Superintendent and National Director] continues to visit our sister churches in Cuba this week [they were not in Havana, and so did not feel the effects of last night's tornado]. We will be given more information about our second sponsored church [Almendares] as well as an update on our "original" church [La Maquina] when they return, as well as a better introduction to the child we have agreed to sponsor [Eliezer]Our annual International Dinner and Food Fair Fellowship in celebration of our relationship with the churches we have partnered with in Cuba will take place following our February 24 service. This is a potluck fellowship: please bring a meal representing your heritage/culture as we eat together. As we focus on the pastors and congregations of La Maquina and Almendares churches we will receive our annual offering for them [and will throughout the month of February].   A day of celebration . . . we want to honour David and Pamela on their recent marriage, and will hold a shower for them after our March 3 service. Matt will host a potluck lunch at his home. More details will be announced as the event is finalized. We are collecting a "congregational cash gift" . . . please see one of your board members if you would like to contribute.Again this year we have the opportunity to skate at the Governor General's residence/Rideau Hall. Our congregation has the rink to ourselves for the evening of Friday March, 8 from 7:00-8:30 pm. Plan to come out to this family fellowship time and an evening of fun . . . invite someone to come with you!Bridlewood will host a celebration service March 24 at 7:00 pm. As well, we will meet with the Bridlewood congregation for services during Holy Week again this year: Monday and Wednesday at Bridlewood at 7:00 pm; Tuesday and Thursday at Trinity at 7:00 pm, and Good Friday at Bridlewood at 4:30 pm [April 14-21]. We will hold our spring service of music and celebration in our April 28 service. We encourage everyone to participate . . . to sing  . . . to read . . . to share something! Matt will speak to us about our participation closer to the date.We are inviting the members of the Ottawa Misfits motorcycle group to join us on May 26. We will prepare breakfast for the group and they will join us in our worship service before a "blessing of the bikes". Pray that God will bless and use this outreach opportunity for His glory. Our message: We're All Misfits!We are in the process of updating our church directory – would you help us by making sure that the information we have is current? Check the bulletin board to see "what we have on file". We make the updated directory available [print or digital] at the end of January.

Sundays . . .
  • Feb  3      The Old Covenants: Moses
  • Feb 10     The Old Covenants: David
  • Feb 17     The New Covenant
  • Feb 24     Matt speaking
  • Mar  3     A Clean Sweep
  • Mar 10    Cross Words: Forgiveness
  • Mar 17    Cross Words: Promise
  • Mar 24    Cross Words: Despair
  • Mar 31    Cross Words: Completion
  • Apr  7      Cross Words: Commitment

In February . . .

  • 01             Youth Alive . . . Splash, 7pm
  • 03             Worship Practice, 10am
  • 03             Worship, 11am
  • 03             Coffee Fellowship, 12nn
  • 07             Congregational Prayer, 7pm
  • 08             Youth Alive . . . Jeopardy
  • 10             Worship Practice, 10am
  • 10             Worship, 11am
  • 14             Young Adult Q&A, 6:30pm
  • 15             Youth Alive . . . Mystery and Intrigue
  • 17             Worship Practice, 10am
  • 17             Worship, 11am
  • 22             Youth Alive . . . Beach Night
  • 24             Worship Practice, 10am
  • 24             Worship, 11am