Love Alaska/Luis Palau Festival is coming up soon. There are still flyers available at the church building to hand out as well as yard signs to put up. Grab a few on your way out the door tomorrow or swing by the church this week. The event takes place next weekend, June 7-8 at Cuddy Park. Be praying for the event, and if you want to volunteer or donate to the expenses of the event, or if you just want more information you can go to their webpage http://lovealaska.org/. Click on the link you want and you’ll find all the info and directions that you need. See you there!
Here is a fantastic devotional by Dutch Sheets on the power of hope. It is reposted with permission from his blog. You will find a link at the bottom to his website where you will find more devotionals like this.
“Several years ago, my brother was allowed to witness an open-heart surgery. During the procedure, the patient’s heart had been stopped from beating. When it came time to restart it, despite repeated attempts, the medical staff was unable to cause the heart to beat again. Finally, although the patient was obviously unconscious, the surgeon leaned over and spoke into the patient’s ear, “We need your help. We cannot get your heart restarted. Tell your heart to start beating.” Incredibly, in that instant, the patient’s heart began to beat again!
Proverbs 13:12 tells us, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick.” But the diagnosis can change! God has promised healing to the brokenhearted (Luke 4:18). There is a crisis point, however—one we all reach—in the process of healing from hope deferred: choosing to embrace the healing process. Hope—and healing—is a choice that must be made.
As you probably know too well, experiencing hope deferred does not require a choice—pain and disappointment are facts of life. Healing, however, does require a choice. Making the simple but powerful choice to hope again is the first step toward healing.
Wilma Rudolph, three-time gold medalist in the 1960 Olympics and once known in the field of running as the world’s fastest woman, said, “The doctors told me I would never walk again. My mother told me I would. I believed my mother.”
Born prematurely into a very poor family and the 20th of 22 children, Wilma was not permitted to receive care at the local white hospital. For the next several years, her mother took her once a week for two years to the nearest medical facility that would treat her—a 90-mile round trip. Wilma Rudolph’s life is an amazing story of achievement against the odds—but the story began with the right choices.
Like the Olympic champion and her mother, you will have to choose the power of hope. I realize this puts some of the responsibility for healing on you, but it is also an incredibly liberating truth. Healing—freedom from hope deferred—is a choice that can be made.
Scripture is filled with promises that you have this power to choose life over death.The Lord actually told the Israelites to “choose life” (Deut. 30:19). You don’t have the luxury of choosing never to have challenges, but you do get to choose how you respond.
People sometimes refer to their difficult times as winter seasons. There is a beautiful picture associated with this in Ezekiel 47. The prophet Ezekiel was given a vision of the river of God. In this vision, the river produced life and healing everywhere it went. Interestingly, the Hebrew word for river in the passage is nachal, and means “a stream, especially a winter torrent.” Some streams and rivers are dry during certain times of the year. They fill up, however, when there is rain, or, as in this case, when the spring thaw melts the snow and ice on the mountains. Tiny rivulets develop, coming together to form streams and, eventually, becoming nachalim (rivers). Though Ezekiel’s winter river began as a trickle in verse 1, it eventually became a mighty unfordable river by verse 5.
As your winter season changes to spring, God’s healing will likely begin as a mere trickle. Keep choosing life! You can be confident that the river will deepen and that God will use the snow and ice of your spiritual winter to bring a deep flow of His Spirit to you.
For those who are confused and disillusioned, for the heart grieving from pain and loss, for the faithful but weary soldier whose stream-bed is dry, for those who have lost their first love connection to God, for the Gideons of the world who are heartsick with hope deferred … your season is changing. The warmth of spring is going to do its work, and summer is coming.
Thank God winter doesn’t last forever. The river of healing will flow to you, and you will drink its healing power. Hope deferred will end. Tell your heart to beat again!”
(c) 2014 Dutch Sheets Used with Permission http://www.dutchsheets.org/your-healing-is-within-reach/
The drinks are on the house! Join us for all the free coffee, sweet tea, Italian soda, and lemonade you can drink plus free snacks this coming Sunday, June 1st at 5 PM. This will be the last Coffeehouse until we open for business again in the fall. Bring some friends and relax and hang out. If you have any questions you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
JCC honored the pastors of the Spanish congregation Saturday evening during the final service of JCC’s Spanish church for the summer. Pastors Rei and Mayra will be taking a short break and heading to New Mexico and then to Mexico on a missions trip. Rei sang some lovely Spanish choruses including one that he wrote himself. Mayra read the scripture and led in prayer. Following the reading of the Word Rei brought an encouraging message about the impossible becoming possible with God, and Mayra translated for the English speakers present. The Morales’ shared a heartfelt thank you and request for prayer for their trip, and Pastor Marlan closed out the service by praying for Rei and Mayra. The group adjoined to the Fellowship Hall for a meal together. The Morales family will be greatly missed during their sojourn. Please keep them in prayer as they minister travel and minister in Mexico. Click on the arrow below to listen to Rei’s message.
Here’s a wonderful little devotional by Roy Lessin. Is your tank filled up today?
Be filled with the Spirit. Ephesians 5:18
“When I first started driving there were two distinct choices at the gas station, regular gas or Ethyl. To put it simply, if you had a big car with a powerful, high performance engine, you needed Ethyl gas. The car could still run on regular gas, but it would not perform well. With Ethyl in the tank the car would sing, without Ethyl the car would ping.
Like a high performance car, we were made to operate on Ethyl gas. Living life on inferior gasoline makes us ping instead of sing. We cannot live life in our own strength or depend upon our own resources—we were not made to go it alone, or do it alone.
We were made by God and for His purposes. To live the life that God made us to live, we must be totally dependent upon Him. In fact, God has not given us the option to “get by” on the regular gasoline of our own resources. Instead He tells us that without Him (and His resources) we can do nothing.
Where does the power come from to live the life that God has created us to live? It is not by our natural might or power, but by God’s Spirit (Zechariah 4:6). We are not to fill up our life at the gas pump of “regular living.” Instead, God wants us to fill up our lives at the river of “supernatural living.” That river, that life, that person, is the Holy Spirit.
Our journey is long (for a lifetime) and the needs are great. We need more than half-a-tank to finish the race. None of us should push on in our own strength until we run out of gas and end up parked on the side of the road with an empty tank. In Ephesians 5:18 we are told to be filled with the Spirit (and to keep on being filled). His filling is abundant and freely given, and He is more than able to keep us full as we drink of Him moment by moment and day by day.”
(c) 2014 Roy Lessin Used with Permission http://www.meetmeinthemeadow.com/2014/05/regular-or-ethyl/
JCC’s Spanish service has been going gangbusters. The word is getting out and more and more people are stopping by to check out the Saturday evening service. We are proud of our Spanish pastors Rei and Mayra Morales and are so grateful for all of the work that they have been doing. This coming Saturday, May 24th at 6 PM, during the Spanish service, we will be honoring the Morales family. There will be a reception celebration following the service, and both JCC congregations are invited to attend to bless Rei and Mayra. Since the Morales family will be traveling for a couple of months this will be the last Spanish service for the summer. Services will resume in the fall after Rei and Mayra return to Anchorage. Please bring a snack and come help us pay tribute to our amazing Spanish pastors.