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February 19, 2015

The River Community Church
Thoughts From The Elders

Pastor Dave ConradsFrom Jim Broffitt                               

Gather >Grow >Go >  That is our mission; the way we become disciples; the way we make disciples.  Where are you in this process?  It is good to take inventory occasionally.  If you are reading this, you are probably a part of our fellowship and attend worship services on Sunday morning.  That’s good; you are gathering. 

Are you growing?  Is your knowledge and understanding of God’s Word increasing?  Are you building deeper relationships with people in our church?  How does this growth happen?  By participating in Sunday school, a home group, reading and studying the Bible, and prayer.  How is your growth? 

Are you going, that is, are you serving Jesus Christ?  Are you involved in a ministry in the church?  How about outside the church?  Are you helping the needy, widows, or orphans?  Are you spreading the Gospel?

 If you are having trouble answering positively to these questions, perhaps it is time to take stock and adjust your course.  My impression is that witnessing for Christ; explaining God’s planforSalvation to lost people is where a lot of us fall down.

1 Peter 3:15 (NIV) 15  But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.

We are all called to be ready to explain the hope that we have.  Why is this hard?  Fear.  We fear confrontation and not being able to answer questions. 

Confrontation does not need to happen.  If you are speaking with a friend, you can ask them to tell you about their spiritual beliefs.  Listen to what they say, and try to find topics to discuss.  For example, life after death, is salvation by works orgrace,orfulfilledprophecy.  This will allow you to explain your beliefs.   As the Bible verse says, do this with gentleness and respect.  This is not confrontational.

What aboutnotbeing able to answer questions?  No one has all the answers.  No matter how much we study, no matter how many Bible studies we do, we will never know it all.  However, you can prepare to answer questions.  I read a book last summer that I recommend: The Questions Christians Hope No One Will Ask, by Mark Mittelberg.  There are other books of this nature, but I thought this one was particularly good.  Actually, the men will begin studying this book in Sunday school in a few weeks.

I encourage all of us to grow by participating in our current church program for growth.  How do we do that? By attending Sunday school.  All are welcome, and there is room for you in these classes.

Gather & Grow...River Community Life

Women's Tailgate Event
Saturday, February 21 @ 6pm 

Hey, River women!  Mark your calendars: Saturday, February 21, 6 PM. Come tailgate with us in the gym for an evening of fun and games.  Wear your favorite team colors and bring a snack to share. This is a good time to invite your friends for a fun, relaxing evening with the women.

Gather 101

Materials are gathered and printed for our class on "Gather 101". This class is all about The River. If you are interested in membership in this local body of believers at The River or just want more info about the church, what it believes and how we fit into the body as people, then sign up at The Welcome Center Sunday with your contact info and we'll get a class going soon!

New Women’s Sunday Morning Study
Begins in March 

Can a simple dinner party for the neighbors change the world? Karen Mains says, "Yes!" And in Open Heart, Open Home she shows how. Karen Mains steps far beyond how-to-entertain hints to explore a biblical and spiritual approach to using your home to care for others. This approach to hospitality can literally transform the fabric of your community and your world. If you labor under the illusion that hospitality requires Martha Stewart-like abilities, then Mains will free you from a load of guilt! Instead, she offers fresh and inspiring ideas for using your own resources to serve rather than to impress with new "opening the door" activities in each chapter. You will discover how the Holy Spirit can work in and through you to make others feel welcome and wanted. Whether you are a business executive or a homemaker, a professional minister or a layperson, a seasoned entertainer or an entertaining klutz, you will find here the encouragement and skills you need to reach out with the gospel through daily acts of acceptance, belonging and love.

See Julie Jessop about ordering a book or sign up at the Welcome Center at The River.

Saturday, March 28, 5pm, Women’s Pizza, Meals & Sewing Night

Join in the fun! We’re making freezer meals for those in need and working on Days for Girls kit items PMS(Provisions for My Sister). Sign up at the Welcome center to bring ingredients for the freezer meals and a couple of dollars for pizza.

Go...Serving in Jesus' Name

February Mission Focus: Jeff and Barb Chapman - Japan

We have completed our cell-church plant project in Japan and are preparing to move on to a new ministry. We will be working with an existing church to strengthen it’sministry in the local area. We also plan to work with church leaders to launch a church-planting ministry. While we know WHAT God wants us to do, the WHERE is still undecided as of this writing. Please pray for us to discern God’s perfect will for our next ministry site. We know it will be in the Kansai (Osaka) area, but there are several churches wanting our partnership. Two recent events have confirmed our resolve to take the gospel to Japan 1) The Prime Minister has declared that he will again make Japan into a Shinto state, joining religion and government as it was prior to WWII. 2) For the first time in the history of Christianity in Japan, 65 Christian leaders met to share a vision to start 50,000 Christian gatherings in the next 10 years. The amazing part about this is that all 65 leaders are Japanese! This is not a missionary-led movement. Please pray for these leaders, for the church, and for the missionaries, as we work together to wage the spiritual battle that is looming just ahead. Christ is the victor. For more about Jeff and Barb and their families, go to:convergeworldwide.org and look under missionaries. To send encouragement, their email is:  jbcinjapan@gmail.com.  Their current newsletter is posted in the Resource Room for you to read or take.

Neighborhood News

Pickleball Lessons

One of America’s fastest growing sports, pickleball is a mini version of tennis played on a badminton-size court with a paddle and a plastic ball.   It may have a funny name,  but it is a serious sport!  It is fast-paced and easy to learn, great exercise and lots of fun!  It is played on tennis courts and gym floors that are striped for pickleball, and is a great game for seniors.  There are over 100 players in Johnson County, and most are in their 50s, 60s, and 70s.  It is easier than tennis and the rallies generally last longer. 

Paddles and balls will be supplied.  You need appropriate clothing and shoes for a gym floor.  You will practice serves (which must be underhand), ground strokes, dink shots, and volleys.  Prior experience playing tennis, ping-pong or racquetball is helpful but not necessary. You will learn rules of the game and scoring for both doubles and singles.   Most pickleball is played with doubles, which has less running than singles but is still good exercise. 

Information about pickleball and videos of play are available on the USA Pickleball Association website:   www.usapa.org.  A good one is under Education & Training.  Click on “What is Pickleball?”  Then watch the video.

Fee: none. Registration required.  Limited to 12 students per session. Senior Center membership is not required.

Session 1:    Th,  9 – 11 AM in the Robert A. Lee Recreation Center gym
                        3/5, 3/12, 3/26, 4/2

Session 2:    Th,  9 – 11 AM in the Robert A. Lee Recreation Center gym
                         4/9, 4/16, 4/23, 4/30

Instructors: Jim Broffitt, Myra Clark, and Mary Foraker

Registration started on February 18. 
To register call the Senior Center (356-5220).

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