Church Blog

Church Blog

Absence Makes the Heart Grow Founder

Dear First Church Family,      Wow have I missed you! When our leadership and I made the decision to not have worship this past weekend because of the winter storm, I prayed that God would use the time to create a hunger among us for being in worship in-person.     After all, as the old adage says: “Absence makes the heart grow fonder.”     That certainly was true for me. And I pray that it was the same for you. Though we made…

Snow Day Policy

First Church Family,While no weather report is ever perfect three days out, every report we are seeing projects a 100% chance for very cold temperatures and heavy snow on Sunday.  Coupled with the fact that several staff members and families are sick, and that we don’t wish to put anyone (lay volunteers, staff, and potential attendees) in dangerous situations on Sunday, most likely we will not have services, or even an online worship presence. We will confirm this decision on Saturday, via email and on our…

We’ll Miss You

Dear First Church Family, I pray you have enjoyed moving over into 2022. Our Youth and Family Ministries Director, Tara Hatton, writes the following note to us: The past two years have brought challenges and hardships to each of us. In my own personal life, 2021 was the most difficult year I’ve yet to experience. In January, issues in my marriage came to light which led to many months of stress and turmoil culminating in separation in August. My husband,…

Happy New Year!

First Church Family:     In early December, upon embarking on an Advent adventure we called: “Christmas Is Not Our Birthday,” I shared with you that our leadership team approved a Christmas program that requested financial gifts be contributed to something Jesus would want for His birthday: the access of clean drinking water for His children.     Several members of our team researched and vetted four different non-profit well-drilling entities who help communities that have no access to clean water gain that access and chose a long-standing non-profit:…

Christmas Is Not Your Birthday

First Church Family,     I pray you are remembering whose birthday Christmas is, and making decisions accordingly. Our present worship series: “Christmas Is Not Your Birthday,” has called me to a new understanding of what things honor Christ during the Christmas season.     I believe that one of the things Jesus would desire is clean drinking water for His children. Over the past two weeks, we made the decision to provide crystal clean drinking water to a village in Chimaltenango, Guatemala.     The project has…

“Normal” Sundays

First Church Family,     During the week, as we prepare bulletins for worship, I’m often asked: “Dave, is this going to be a normal Sunday?” To those of us involved in weekly worship planning, the question really is: “Will we be celebrating holy communion or baptism or have a special emphasis in worship that would change the order of service?”     If my answer is: “No this will be a “normal” Sunday, it means that we will follow our standard form of worship with prayers, music,…

Christmas Letter

First Church Family,             Do you anticipate a wonderful Christmas this year? I do, because I am not basing my expectations on things I might receive, but things I might partner with Jesus on.             You see, everything changes when you begin to anticipate and eagerly await something that actually has the ability to fulfill and satisfy your expectations. The season we are in, Advent, is about preparing for something of great magnitude by having high anticipation of appropriate expectations,…

December News

First Church Family,      It’s a beautiful time of the year.  I remember thinking, back in July:  “Wow, half of the year has gone by… in another five months, we will be celebrating America’s most beloved holiday, Thanksgiving, and then preparing for Christmas.”      And that time has come.  But no matter what we do during Advent, the truth is that the days will tick by, faster and faster, until December 25.  And then, in almost anticlimactic fashion, it will…

Happy Thanksgiving

First Church Family,      Happy Thanksgiving! If you participated with us on our “Bless This Meal”  Thanksgiving project, either by contributing financially or working on Thursday or  Saturday, you blessed others and were blessed yourself!     This past weekend, our volunteers: unpacked trailers of food; packed boxes with meals and carried them out to people’s cars; delivered boxes to persons who didn’t have transportation; visited with, prayed for and provided breakfast for our guests;gave a stuffed animal or toy for every child who came; and shared…

Faithful Financially

First Church Family,     I’ve been enjoying the crisp fall weather this week. It makes me feel like it is really Thanksgiving. And that holiday is only a week away.     This coming weekend is really big for us. We will partner with Christ as we serve 120 local families who are in need on Saturday. I learned yesterday that we have completely underwritten that effort with extra contributions from you totaling more than $3500.  That is amazing! Thank you for…

Bless This Meal

First Church Family,      I haven’t lived here forever as some of you have, but I am amazed every day at the beauty of our surroundings. I truly believe our area is one of God’s beautiful paradises on earth. And this time of year, it is at its prettiest. Please stop every single day, admire God’s handiwork, and offer prayers of praise and gratitude.     On Saturday, November 20, we will take a big step in getting back to who we were before…

All Saints’ Sunday

First Church Family,        Over the past weeks, our worship focus has been on promises God makes to us, all across the Scriptures. Perhaps, the most significant promise is that of spending eternity with God in heaven because of Jesus’ sacrifice for us on the Cross and God’s redemptive act through Jesus’ Resurrection.     This Sunday, November 7, is All Saints’ Day; a time we will recall the lives of those members of our congregation who have gone before us into God’s heavenly presence during the…