“Abide in Me”

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My friends,

Remember last Sabbath? Many of you could not attend the worship service because of the icy roads. Our church parking lot looked like an ice skating rink. Our first services started with four people; two of them on the platform :-). Emily was leading our song service and Wayne was playing the organ. We kept singing until our attendance grew to fifteen brave worshipers. By 11:30 am the sun melted the ice on the main roads and our attendance grew to 45! I trust that those of you who stayed home had a safe and blessed Sabbath day.

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I hope you survived the beautiful snow storm. It was really pretty behind the parsonage. I felt like I was back in Russia.

I heard that some of you had to work for hours cleaning your driveways and roads leading to your houses. Good news! The warm sunshine cleaned all the roads around the church. Our church parking lot is dry and ready for you. I missed you last week and I am looking forward to a joyful and dynamic worship service with you tomorrow morning. I am starting a new series of sermons on Christian discipleship titled “Be My Disciples.” Tomorrow morning is Part 1 – “Abide in Christ”. Please read John 15:1-8.

Last night the OAKS school board unanimously approved Rosa Lee’s permanent employment status. According to the Conference policy the school staff needs an annual rehire vote for the first three years before they are voted as regular employees. This year Rosa Lee completed her initial three-year term and per last night’s school Board vote received regular employment status. Congratulations, Rosa Lee. Thank you for your hard work and for your commitment. The meeting lasted for about three hours. Board members frankly and passionately talked about the blessings and the challenges of our school operation. That was a very helpful meeting. I was impressed with the unity of the school Board and their desire to see our school prosper and grow. Please, remember Rosa Lee and the OAKS teachers and staff in your prayers daily. This is not an easy job. They are in the mission field, leading our children to Christ.

Next week the contractor will start preparation for the church roof replacement. This became possible because of your generous support of the Nehemiah project. I am sure that it will not take long before we see new pews in the sanctuary, new windows and doors in the hallways. This is the house of the Lord. Let us give our best to Him.

Next Wednesday night at 7 pm our prayer-warriors will share their report of the prayer conference they attended last weekend. I had a chance to visit with some of them and was impressed with the insights that they received during the conference. They are ready to share these important thoughts with us during the Wednesday night prayer meeting. Please, plan on attending the meeting this coming Wednesday night.

Because of the very low attendance last Sabbath our church budget needs very serious attention. I know how much you care about our church ministries and about our school. I pray that tomorrow morning we’ll see a miracle of what God can do in us and through us when we step into the water of the Jordan river by faith. God will stop the river. He will take away our fears. Try God’s power tomorrow! We need at least $10,000 in donations toward the local church budget as tomorrow is the last Sabbath of the month. Please, pray about your part in this miracle.

Ed Pino, our extern and church elder, had to drive home to be with his mother who is terminally ill. Please, remember Ed and his family in your prayers. Let God give him strength and courage. Let His loving and comforting presence be with Ed’s mother.

Mark your calendars:

The Emmanuel Quartet will be presenting a gospel concert in our Family Fellowship Center on Sabbath evening March 14, at 7:00 PM. You will not want to miss this event. The Emmanuel Quartet’s home base is located right here in our own community but have presented concerts throughout the USA. They have many loyal followers around the country and sing with Spiritual fervor and commitment. They love Jesus and are dedicated to spreading the Good News through beautiful arrangements of hymns and gospel songs. No tickets are necessary. We will take an offering to help with their expenses and CD’s of their music will be available after the concert. Your Ooltewah Church Music Ministry participants are asking that you let people know about this concert. Let’s make this event a part of our evangelistic outreach to our community.

Check the new mobile-friendly design of our church website at www.ooltewahchurch.org

Here is a link to the February church Newsletter 

I’ll see you tomorrow. Happy Sabbath.

Pastor Peter

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