Saturday, February 28, 2015

Bible Challenge 03/01 - 03/07

Greetings All!

This week we finish up the New Testament with Jude and Revelation and begin with the Old Testament in Genesis.

Jude - This book is often attributed to one of Jesus' brothers. This 25 verse letter was composed as an encyclical letter - not directed at any one church but rather intended to be circulated and read in all churches. Addressed to Christians in general it warns about the doctrine of certain errant teachers. Many examples of evildoers and warnings about their fates are given in some of the most strongly worded language in the New Testament. The letter concludes with a doxology (short hymn of praise) one of the highest in quality in the Bible.

Revelation - Also attributed to John the disciple and probably written during John's exile at Patmos, this book is the piece of apocalyptic literature in the New Testament, a genre that relies heavily on visions and symbolism (like Daniel in the Old Testament). This book is written specifically to a group of churches in Asia (that was a province in the Roman Empire which encompasses modern day Turkey). The book deals a lot with sevens: messages to seven churches, the seven seal judgments, seven trumpet judgments and finally the seven bowl judgments. One of the big keys to understanding the book is found in the Old Testament - 278 out of the 404 verses in the book allude or refer to things contained in the Old Testament. Personally, I have found the most benefit when I read through Revelation thinking of it as God's great triumph over evil. And there is a lot of love and mercy to be found in the words as God continually provides opportunities for people to turn away from sin and turn to Him.

Genesis - Did you know that Genesis means "beginnings" or "origins"? And there are several beginnings and origins that are actually outlined within the book of Genesis as we move through it; Creation, the flood story and God's covenant with Noah, the tower of Babel and the dispersion of the people, God's calling of Abram and covenant with him, the continuation of that covenant through Isaac and later Jacob, and finally the starting over of the Israelites under the protection of Joseph in Egypt. We should pay close attention as we read Genesis because this is the beginnings of our history as the people of God.

Here is the schedule:

1 (Su) - 3 John, Jude, and Revelation 1-2

2 (M) - Revelation 3-6

3 (Tu)- Revelation 7-10

4 (W)- Revelation 11-14

5 (Th) - Revelation 15-18

6 (F) - Revelation 19-22

7 (Sa) - Genesis 1-4
  
May God add his richest blessings to the reading, the hearing and most importantly the living out of His Holy Word. Amen.



Friday, February 27, 2015

Friday Fives

1. Sunday Worship - Lent is a season of introspection and self evaluation. It is a time for us to take a hard, honest look at our faith journeys and make the changes necessary to remove any barrier between us and God. As a means of help in those inspections, this Lenten season we will turn our focus to the person of Jesus Christ as we seek to understand the depth of his ministry, the focus of his teachings, and what lessons we can learn as we seek to model those ideals in our lives today. Come and join us as we look to the person and nature of the man we call Messiah as we take our journey of introspection and self awareness. Invite a friend and I hope to see you all there!






2. Easter Tableau - Our Annual Easter Tableau, our gift to this community, is right around the corner. On Thursday, April 2nd and Friday, April 3rd, we will give the people of Ocala the opportunity to witness and relive for themselves the last week of Christ's life here on Earth. In order to make this a reality, we need your help. There are sign-up sheets on the Connection Station for you to volunteer in a myriad of ways. You can volunteer for things such as portraying a character in one of the scenes, to scene set-up, costumes, make-up, sound, or lighting. We still have many places for willing hands and we need yours! Please also be in prayer for a successful 2015 Easter Tableau. If you have any questions, please contact Linda Hughes or Terri Silvola-Finch. Thank You!






3. FAD Night - FAD Night is a time for us to share a simple meal together and then break off into our groups; children, youth, and adults. After that we come back together for a time of music and prayer. FAD Night will run each Thursday from 5:30pm-7:30pm.









4. Talent Show - S.O.S. (Sisters of Soul) is hosting a birthday celebration and talent show on Saturday, March 14th at 7:00pm. That's right! We're going to celebrate YOUR birthday and entertain (well.....hopefully entertain!) you all in the same evening! Sign up sheets are available at the Connection Station where you will sign for your birthday month. One person from each month needs to volunteer to bring a birthday cake to share that evening while we enjoy the talent and someone else may want to decorate their table! AND whether you read some poetry, sing, tell us a joke or do a little jig, please sign up on the sheet labeled TALENT so we can get with you to organize the evening. Questions????? Ask any member of S.O.S.






5. Help Needed - We are expecting a special visitor on Easter Sunday and to help us prepare for our visitor, the United Methodist Women are asking for donations of big colorful plastic eggs & wrapped candy to fit inside the eggs. Please no chocolate. They are asking all donations of eggs & candy be received by Thursday, March 26TH. The UMW is also asking for volunteers to fill the eggs on March 31st @ 10:00am in Fellowship Hall. Any questions, contact Joy Anderson.





Have a great weekend and I will see you Sunday!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Midweek Moment

Self-examination is hard. Let’s just start with the truth and name it. Honestly looking at who you are, from an altruistic perspective, from a faith perspective, from a disciple of Jesus Christ perspective is hard. There are always things we could do better or more frequently. There are always those fruits of the Spirit that we could exhibit better or more frequently. And to sit and verbalize those short comings can and is an uncomfortable and difficult exercise.


This week in worship we will look once again to the nature and person of Jesus, but this time through the lens of Jesus as a rebel. Jesus was anything but the cultural norm, anything but easy to sweep aside. He challenged the norms and called them unacceptable. He said there was a better way, albeit a harder way.

Lent is all about introspection. It is about looking at who we are as Disciples of Christ and being honest about what we need to change to be more like our Messiah and Savior. It is about making those hard decisions to allow the Holy Spirit to enter in and remold us in the image of God. It is about claiming our birthright as children of God and not settling for what is culturally acceptable or easy, but allowing the love of God to continually change us as we strive to become more like Christ every day.

This Lent, I want to encourage you to continue to give yourself over to Jesus. I want to invite you to allow the Holy Spirit to show you those places where you can take down your walls and allow grace and mercy to be your guide. I want to implore you to seize this opportunity to become more like our Creator so that when others look at you, they see God in all you say and do.

Self-examination is hard, but it is necessary. Through the Lenten disciplines of prayer, fasting, and giving may each and every one of you experience the presence of God as we all seek to be all that God has created us and called us to be, this day and forevermore.

Have a great week and I will see you Sunday!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

February 22, 2015: Who is this Man? - Acts 4:1-11

This week we began our season of Lent by looking at the person and nature of Jesus Christ. It is fundamentally important for us as believers in Jesus Christ to be able to answer the question, "Who is this Man?" I hope as you listen(ed) to these words that through the power of the Holy Spirit you were affirmed, strengthened, and encouraged about your relationship with Christ. I pray that as you continue to wrestle with who Jesus is for you that your relationship with him will grow and deepen and that you will always be a vessel by which others come to know our Risen Savior!

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Bible Challenge 02/22 - 02/28

Greetings All,

This week we finish up Hebrews, and read through James, I and II Peter, I, II and III John. Here is some material to help you with your reading.

James - Most believe the author of this letter to be James the brother of Jesus. Many people wrestle with this letter because it appears to contradict Paul's stance on justification by faith alone. James emphasizes works, but not in the sense of justifying oneself before God; rather in the sense that works are evidence of a person's inward faith.

I and II Peter - Attributed by its title to the Apostle Peter, this letter and its counterpart II Peter are some of the latest writings to be included in the New Testament. The first letter is the only one scholars really attribute to Peter; probably written while Peter was the bishop of the church in Rome. In this letter addressed to believers dispersed through five different provinces in Asia Minor (Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia) is a word of encouragement to those undergoing religious persecution. The authorship of II Peter is largely in question and was probably not the Apostle Peter - because it quotes a later letter extensively (Jude). But the main purpose of this letter is to identify Jesus with God and to correct a growing heresy since Jesus had not yet returned.

I John, II John and III John - These letters are attributed to the disciple John who also wrote the Gospel of John and Revelation. The first two letters were probably written in Ephesus between 95-110 AD to counter the heresies that Jesus did not come in the flesh but only as a spirit. The first letter is a general one and lifts up how Christians are to discern true teachers: by their ethics, their proclamation of Jesus and by their love. The second letter is a private one written to "an elect lady" and much speculation exists as to who this person is. The final letter is another private one addressed to Gaius to commend a party of Christians who had gone on a mission to preach the Gospel, to encourage him and to warn him of a group of other believers who are not cooperating.

Jude - This book is often attributed to one of Jesus' brothers. This 25 verse letter was composed as an encyclical letter - not directed at any one church but rather intended to be circulated and read in all churches. Addressed to Christians in general it warns about the doctrine of certain errant teachers. Many examples of evildoers and warnings about their fates are given in some of the most strongly worded language in the New Testament. The letter concludes with a doxology (short hymn of praise) one of the highest in quality in the Bible.

Revelation - Also attributed to John the disciple and probably written during John's exile at Patmos, this book is the piece of apocalyptic literature in the New Testament, a genre that relies heavily on visions and symbolism (like Daniel in the Old Testament).

Here is the schedule:

22 (Su) - Hebrews 5-8

23 (M) - Hebrews 9-12

24 (Tu)- Hebrews 13; James 1-3

25 (W)- James 4-5; I Peter 1-2

26 (Th) - I Peter 3-5; II Peter 1

27 (F) - II Peter 2-3; I John 1-2

28 (Sa) - I John 3-5; II John; III John

May God add his richest blessings to the reading, the hearing and most importantly the living out of His Holy Word. Amen.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Friday Fives

1. Sunday Worship - This week we will turn our attention to the season of Lent as we examine the question; "Who is Jesus?" Was he just a man? Was he more than just a good moral teacher? How do we know the answers to these questions?

Come and join us as we look to the person and nature of the man we call Messiah as we begin our journey of introspection and self awareness. Invite a friend and I hope to see you all there!





2. FAD Night - FAD Night will resume next week, February
26th. We will gather for our simple dinner and then we are having a special guest that will guide us in the making of prayer bottles. To help make sure we have enough supplies we need you to register for this week's gathering. You can call the church office, 629-5688, email by clicking here, or sign up at the Connection Station on Sunday. This will be a wonderful time to make something with our hands as we share time with one another. Be sure to sign up today!





3. Talent Show - S.O.S. (Sisters of Soul) is hosting a birthday celebration and talent show on Saturday, March 14th at 7:00pm. That's right! We're going to celebrate YOUR birthday and entertain (well.....hopefully entertain!) you all in the same evening! Sign up sheets are available at the Connection Station where you will sign for your birthday month. One person from each month needs to volunteer to bring a birthday cake to share that evening while we enjoy the talent and someone else may want to decorate their table! AND whether you read some poetry, sing, tell us a joke or do a little jig, please sign up on the sheet labeled TALENT so we can get with you to organize the evening. Questions????? Ask any member of S.O.S.





4. Help Needed - We are expecting a special visitor on Easter Sunday and to help us prepare for our visitor, the United Methodist Women are asking for donations of big colorful plastic eggs & wrapped candy to fit inside the eggs. Please no chocolate. They are asking all donations of eggs & candy be received by Thursday, March 26TH. The UMW is also asking for volunteers to fill the eggs on March 31st @ 10:00am in Fellowship Hall. Any questions, contact Joy Anderson.





5. Stay Connected - You can always stay connected throughout the month to events and opportunities that happen here at Druid Hills by checking out our website and Pastor Daryl’s blog. Visit the Pastor’s blog (www.pastordaryl.blogspot.com) to get video recordings of the weekly sermons, a Friday Five column, Midweek Moment, church calendar, and the schedule for the daily Bible Challenge. Visit often to stay connected!

Website: www.druidhillsocala.org.           
Pastor’s Blog: www.pastordaryl.blogspot.com






Have a great weekend and I will see you Sunday!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Midweek Moment

This past Wednesday we gathered in the Sanctuary for worship as we welcomed the Lenten Season. We had a time of prayer, of song, and I shared the message below about what Lent means and ways we can observe this season. I pray this season of Lent is one where you can draw closer to God and take that next step in your relationship with the One that loved you first.