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Monday, July 30, 2007

Looking Ahead

Vacation Bible School was a roaring success! We had an amazing time singing silly songs, making crafts, and learning the truths of God in interesting ways. The seeds of faith were planted in many lives, both young and old. Even now I can’t get those songs out of my head; I even woke myself up this morning singing “Sign Me Up!”
I have spoken many times on the importance of Vacation Bible School and similar events, and a week like the one we have just completed reinforces that argument more and more. There is nothing more appropriate for the ministry of a church than providing the community surrounding it with a chance to hear the Gospel in meaningful and touching ways. Vacation Bible School is the reason I am a believer, and for many of you as well. What a wonderful time for our community!
But what do we do now? Surely VBS is not the be-all-end-all of life in the church; we still worship every Sunday, teach Sunday school, host children’s and youth programs, and participate in missions work year round. Here is what we as a church are preparing to do this year: On August 12th we will begin two new Sunday school departments, one for college students and young adults, and one for pre-school age children. These two classes will fill major gaps in our ministerial spectrum. Therefore, now there is indeed a Sunday school, worship, service, and ministry opportunity for every member of our community. Are you a recent high school graduate looking for a local church with a relevant college ministry? Are you a parent needing Christian care and education for your little ones? FBC is the place for you.

We as a church are also planning mission trips, camps, retreats, fellowships, service projects, and other events to get you involved in your community and the Kingdom. Join us this week to see what the Lord is doing in Riesel; you will want to get involved!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

This week of the year is always one of my favorites. People are crawling over the church like ants, decorating, moving things, painting things, and generally being excited. You see, this is the week of preparation for Vacation Bible School, the most important week of ministry that our church participates in. Children have the opportunity to come here and have a great time of worship, craft-making, games, and all around silliness for an entire week, all the while being presented with the truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Why is this such an important week? For starters it gives moms and dads a break every evening! More importantly, though, statistics have demonstrated that the older people are, the more resistant they are to the freedom presented in the cross of Jesus. Thus, our church unashamedly offers intense, fun, and evangelistic evenings of Bible School with the express purpose of presenting the Gospel to the children of our town. There is no cost to the children or the parents; this is a ministry of our church. We think it is such an important thing for your children to hear the Good News of Jesus that we conduct Vacation Bible School every year free of charge.
Your children need to be here. They will be entertained, they will make crafts, they will play crazy games; but more importantly they will meet the Lord. Come by Monday night at 6:00 to register. VBS will be each night from 6:30-8:00pm.
We would love to worship with you and your family outside of Vacation Bible School, too. Join us for worship this Sunday morning at 11:00. FBC Riesel also hosts Bible studies, classes in world issues, men’s and women’s groups, scouts, and youth and children’s programs weekly. There is something for your entire family here.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

The old hymn “Showers of Blessing” have never meant so much to this community as they do this year. A years-long drought has ended, and now we are presented with an abundance of life giving water. We have been blessed with so much more than rain, however, and I think it is due time we thought about all that the Lord has done and is doing around us.
Yes, the waters of the sky have been opened up to us, but have we noticed that the waters of grace have flowed just as freely? Men and women, boys and girls are all realizing that grace is a central and necessary part of life. Young and old are asking forgiveness of sin and committing themselves to God’s ways of love and mercy. Hearts and homes are changing in our town and community, and yours just might be next. God is moving here; that is undeniable. We risk missing the Lord as he passes by this way, however, when we focus on things that remain on the periphery of his goals for us. We must, as a church and as a community, remain focused on the Lord’s work here. What can we do that is more important in this life than serve the Lord? Let us work for God, let us build up his Kingdom and reinforce his church. This is the time and this is the place that you have been called to serve the Lord. Let none of us miss this chance to see God move