NorthRidge Church & Christian Academy
April 2013 Volume 4, Issue 12
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Our News Reaching You; Reaching Out to You In This Issue
A Message From Pastor David
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the most important event in history, providing irrefutable evidence that Jesus is who He claimed to be – the Son of God. The resurrection was not only the supreme validation of His deity; it becomes the foundation of our entire faith structure. If Christ’s body was not resurrected, we have no hope that ours will be (1 Corinthians 15:13, 16). In fact, apart from Christ’s bodily resurrection, we have no Savior, no salvation, and no hope of eternal life. As the apostle Paul lamented, our faith would be “useless” and the life-giving power of the gospel would be altogether eliminated. While this is verifiable and accepted by this congregation, yet the rub occurs when we ponder, what difference does it make for my life. How is my life affected by Christ’s resurrection? I can see the possible effects in the afterlife; but does it really make a difference in this life? The answer is absolutely, “Yes!” The first difference is in the release of guilt; forgiveness. Paul states, “if we believe on Him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification” (Rom. 4:24–25). As long as Christ remained in the grave, death retained power over Him; the final penalty had not as yet been paid. His conquering of the last enemy, death, and His triumphant appearance as being alive, were evidences that sin had been fully atoned for, that God’s justice had been satisfied, and that forgiveness (absolute release from the penalty of sin) was now possible. There is not one sin, not even the least part thereof, for which satisfaction has not been made, and therefore as believers we are free from all guilt and punishment. Peace with God and ultimately peace within is made possible by His resurrection. Because Christ rose, does that mean that we automatically are released from the feeling of guilt? Not necessarily, that brings us to the next difference.
We struggle with guilt most often because we struggle with ourselves, our failures, our weaknesses, our broken relationships, etc. . . . The second benefit is provided in the potential for growth, spiritually. Paul states this in Romans 6:4–5, “Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life, for if we have been planted together in the likeness of His death, we shall be also in the likeness of His resurrection.” Simply put, we have a new potential for life. Let me summarize a few of those new potentials: 1. We are no longer destined to live under the power (authority or control) of our sin nature. We often see this illustrated as an alcoholic struggles to overcome his addiction. Because Christ rose and if He indeed is part of our lives, we have the power within to overcome our sin struggles. Without Christ (or His resurrection) we struggle alone, but with Christ we struggle aided by His guidance, power, etc., that comes through His victory over death (His resurrection). We are no longer in bondage to our sin or its guilt. 2. Having now the ability to overcome those things that ensnare us or trip us up, we also have the ability to overcome the emotional baggage of guilt that drags us down. Since Christ rose to conquer the greatest vices this world knows; sin, death, and the devil – we too have the potential to release the guilt that has held many captive. “For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving, abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you.” (Psalm 85:5) 3. We also have a new pattern (example) of life – the life of Christ. Christ demonstrated critical patterns for us to follow – that we may be overcomers in this life. Christ arose in the morning to meet with His Father. He didn’t need the strength, but His pattern opened the window for us to see how to gain strength and guidance for the day. He knew and quoted Scripture as a tool to ready Himself to face the temptations of life. What He demonstrated was that it is possible for a person living in this sin plagued world to live victoriously through a daily spiritual renewal process. He overcame because He regularly withdrew to meet with His Father. Our victory also hinges upon the regularity of our withdrawal. The final benefit of Christ’s resurrection is the hope we have today of a life far greater that lies beyond this earthly existence. This hope is God’s way to lead His children to heaven by way of many trials. Job said it best, “I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth. 26 And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; I myself will see him with my own eyes—I, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!” (Job 19:25–27). There is strength in hope, knowing that what lies ahead is far greater than anything we may be experience this side of eternity. Let’s remain faithful, always giving ourselves to do the work of God; knowing all the while that our Resurrected Savior is on our team. He has won the battle, and has made life not only livable but blessed and filled with joy for those who hang on to the truth that He indeed lives.
Expressions of Worship:
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Matt. 6:25-26 The day I moved away from home, something changed. Now I know what you’re thinking, “of course things changed; a new step in life was on the horizon.” But that’s not it. Things really did change. The day I moved away from home, the DIRECTV man showed up at my parents’ house and installed this device that allowed us to pick up more than our standard 8 channels. By the way, I had no complaints about only getting 8 channels. Growing up in the middle of nowhere, it’s all I had ever known. But the day I moved away, my parents obviously began saving money on feeding me and decided to invest their finances elsewhere. For those of you that watch the news, read the paper, subscribe to an RSS feed, or simply fail to live under a rock, chances are you have seen the events unfolding in Cyprus over the last couple of weeks. Here’s a quick tutorial for those of you who missed it: Cyprus has banks filled with ‘sketchy Russian money’ (amongst nationals’ deposits and life savings) and carry quite a lot of Grecian debt. Due to an already-fragile economy, the potential of total economic ruin, and contagious financial issues across borders, a bailout was given from a group of people to help keep the economy from total economic collapse, and in doing so, imposed a taxation of funds from everyone with money in the Cyprus banks (they call it a depositors tax). No one is happy, except the other countries in the European Union because they feel less threatened by the possibility of spreading economic collapse and subsequent crises. What this whole situation has done, in my opinion, has made people more aware of the evanescence of financial “security.” Whereas many people had already began pulling money out of mattresses and buying gold, silver, or something else of compound value, others have now started thinking that some of their financial decisions might not have been the best idea. Hmmm….maybe I shouldn’t have spent my life savings buying all those Girl Scout cookies. For the first time in a long time, people all across the world are getting concerned about the things my parents told me about when I was younger. One of those things were the concepts of guarding my credit, living within my means, and saving for the future. I think that’s what mom and dad were showing me when the satellite man showed up at my house just as I was leaving. I’m not saying we shouldn’t enjoy things in life. If you work hard, there should be times of enjoyment. However, the carpe diem ideals of the past twenty year are beginning to be replaced with the concepts of planning, strategizing, and organizing to protect you and yours. Fiscally-minded people have been aware for some years that the government was not going to be a choice retirement plan; many were even aware that the American dollar or BANKS for that matter were not as reliable as other modes of
saving for the future. But here is the overarching thing that I keep seeing: there is becoming a greater chasm between the spenders and the savers. Those who are more financially stable are beginning to see the benefit of teaching others to plan for their future. Not only does it give culture the ‘teach-aman-to-fish-mentality’ but it alleviates some of the stress of the wealthy to feel that they must provide a backup strategy for those who fail to plan. As believers, I believe there is a fine line between faith and self-reliance. A strong faith is something to be valued, but many people are driven to misplace faith when it comes to the ins-and-outs of financial security. Instead of placing our faith fully in God to take care of us, we do our best to scramble and search for a better plan; of course, we don’t recognize it as that. Simple decisions are not so simple anymore when we see the lives of those around us crumbling. We are focusing inward to the extent that our outward relevance could be called into question. By the way, I am not saying we shouldn’t plan or utilize the good sense God gave us (in fact, there is great benefit to training others to be financially responsible). But if we are so driven by fear that we cannot fathom how God is going to get us through this or other situations, we need to take a step back and try to see a bigger picture. Invest…save… plan…but live in faith, knowing that no amount of control we take over these events will ever be able to usurp the authority of the Almighty. The balance between sovereignty and freedom is clearly distressing when living outside of a life of faith. However, when our refuge is Jehovah-jireh, our worries of provision will diminish. No matter what your plans for the future, make sure faith (in God) is first and foremost.
Shout for joy in the Lord, O you righteous! Praise befits the upright. Give thanks to the Lord with the lyre; make melody to him with the harp of ten strings! Sing to him a new song; play skillfully on the strings, with loud shouts. Ps. 33:1-3 Worship Team Interviews Sunday, April 7th @ 5:00pm (in the church auditorium) Our worship team is looking to expand! For anyone interested in joining our team, we will have a musical interview session with our current team. This is designed for everyone to learn a little more about you and dig into a short study on worship. We have a simple questionnaire that we ask everyone to complete as well. If you are interested in being a vocalist, we will take some time for you to sing with the group and as an individual. If you are an instrumentalist, we’d love to have you plug in and play along in this interview process as well. All ranges of talent and skill are welcome. If you would like to participate, please email me at [email protected]
so you can begin working on the questionnaire and the appropriate musical charts for the interview.
From the Desk of Pastor Harold
Thanks for all who give their time and resources to this ministry. If you are considering where you might serve, please pray about getting involved with the Homebound Ministry. This is the current group of Home-bound with addresses that are being ministered to at this time. If you know of others that would benefit from this ministry, please contact Rowena Daley or call the church office @ 863.422.4488 Ms. Irma Swain Spring Haven Retirement LLC 1225 Havendale NW Winter Haven, Florida 33881 (863)-293-0072 Ms. Lucille Tiner Savannah Court assisted living. 301 Peninsular Drive Haines City, FL 33844-5046 (863) 4225204 Ms. Vera Cook Brandywyne Health Care Center 1801 Lake Mariam Drive Winter Haven, FL 33884 (863) 293-1989 Not home bound, but limited in some way and could use a word or two of encouragement with a visit, call or card. Mr Russ Vincent @ home Ms. Dorothy Burgess @ home Ms. Regena Lyle Savannah Court 301 Peninsular Drive #7 Haines City, FL 33844. Phone 863-422-4157.
Frances Bradbury Life Care, room 226
Mr. George Price Spring Haven Retirement LLC 1225 Havendale NW Apt. 511 Winter Haven, Fl. 33881
Senior Adult Day Trip
To Campus Crusade for Christ to tour the Jesus Film Project and more;
Tuesday, May 14, 2013 Leave the church at 9:00 Eat lunch at Golden Corral We should be back to the church by 4:00 See the BEASLEY’S for more info. or to sign up.
We are praising God for providing over 100 million shoe box gifts through Operation Christmas Child since 1993. Every gift is an opportunity to share the Gospel with hurting boys and girls around the world. To celebrate this milestone, we have planned an extraordinary event April 6 in Orlando, Florida. We will be joined by special guests who have seen first-hand how God has worked through this ministry. Franklin Graham President, Samaritan’s Purse We will take the bus and car-pool if needed. Everyone is invited. Tickets are $15.00, plus $3.50 to ride the bus. See Carolyn Beasley to sign up.
There is Still Time to Register
2013 Cruise on Freedom of the Seas 7 day Royal Caribbean Cruise, leaving September 29, 2013 The newly enhanced Freedom of the Seas® is a marvel of maritime engineering, packed with awesome innovations to stir your imagination. Share a high five with Shrek as part of The DreamWorks® Experience. Catch a first-run movie in the 3D theater or poolside under the stars on the outdoor movie screen. Infuse color into your cruise with the artworks of the BRITTO Gallery or with the frosted confections of the Cupcake Cupboard. Plus, enjoy all the revolutionary features Freedom of the Seas has always been known for – FlowRider® surf simulator, rock climbing wall, ice-skating rink, Royal Promenade, cantilevered whirlpools, mini golf course, H2O Zone water park, and much more. Ports of Call: Port Canaveral, Florida; Labadee, Haiti; Falmouth, Jamaica; George Town, Grand Cayman; Cozumel, Mexico; Port Canaveral, Florida Please see Pastor Harold or Sharon O’Donnell To register please call (800) 859-7225 ask to speak with Lewis @ ext. 13168 Tell him you would like to have early dining with reservation 8211905. This is Pastor Harold and Gina's reservation number. This will get us together at dinner. If you have any questions, please contact Pastor Harold Reserve early so we can plan for transportation to and from the port.
God is SOOOOOOOO Good. NorthRidge Christian Academy has been blessed. All donations toward the Mimio Whiteboard Technology received from March 24th through May 1st, will be matched up to at least $15,000. If you have not contributed, please consider how you can help impact the life of our children. If you write a check, please write Mimio in the memo line and the finance office will know what to do with it. Our goal is $40,000. This will allow us to put interactive whiteboards with a new laptop in every classroom in the Academy. The walk-a-thon is scheduled for May 3rd. Our students are excited and working hard to make this year’s walk successful. All money raised in the walk will go toward the Mimio project. We are planning for next year and enrollment is in full swing. If you know families who may be looking for a school that is focused on providing a strong foundation for students to thrive spiritually, socially, and academically, invite them to come see us.
Greeting Church Family!
I wanted to take this opportunity to thank all you for keeping our youth bathed in prayer. We are able to see the power of that prayer at work every Wednesday. Our students have been growing spiritually over the last few months. They are going out and telling others about God and how He is working in their lives. They have been inviting their friends to church with them, and as a result, our numbers have grown as well. We are constantly seeing students come to know Christ, as well as recommitting themselves to the Lord and His service. As a result of this growth, we are taking more kids to camp this year than we have in the past. While camp is not the be all, end all of youth ministry, it is an amazing time for kids to rekindle that fire that needs to be burning inside them. It is a great way to spend time with other believers and, for some, it is a time to answer God’s calling in their life. For some, that may be ministry, for others it could be missions, or education, or any number of areas. This year, we had an amazing fundraiser with our strawberry and yard sale. Our strawberry sales earned our campers $815 and our yard sale raised $1376.65. If you are still looking for ways to help, we are currently hosting our Rent-A-Kid fundraiser. If you have any odd jobs that need to be done around your home, please let us know and we will have students available to work for you. They will be supervised by a parent and I can assure that they will work to make sure that your job is completed to your satisfaction. If you have a job you need completed, please call the church office at 863-4224488 to let us know and we will find campers willing to work and set up a time and day that works for you. Words can’t express how much I appreciate the love and support you have shown us over the years, and I thank you for the prayers you have been lifting up on behalf of our teens. Thank you church family.
Stepping out in faith, Derrick Whiteman
Events and Announcements
At 7:00 am
1 Rebecca Bryan
2 Nathaniel Solis
3 June Hudson
4 Mathew Del Mazo Dee Johnson
11 Sandy Huber Beni Jean Price
5 Luis Appratto Ann Kiker
6 Cathy Baker Marvin Schumacher
7 8 Manuela Anderson Caitlin Fetes Phil Barnes Savannah Watts Sue Whiteman
9 Amber Hanrahan
10 Van Christopher Lyn Franklin William Heverly
12 Alexis Amble Jason Reuter
15 Paige Hancock
16 Jeremiah Cameron Kristina Mallernee Tiffany Singleton
17 Lisa Graffious Travis Pike Lane Reuter
18 Marilyn Collins Jack Gallacher Sahelis Ortiz Benjamin Snively Jonnie watts 25 Lisa Glover
19 Tiffany Graham Christa Mattheus Jason Watts
20 Isabella Colon William Miracle Joy Sims
21 Kaiden McGuire Jim Teske
22 Grace Brewer
23 Hope Fetes Marcia Shaw Cory Stewart
24 Jordan Keesee
26 Tom Mallernee
27 David Clement Ryan Ernst
28 Barbara Blaisdell
29 Irma Swain
5:45-6:45 -Prayer in Sanctuary 6:45-7:45 -Coffee and Bible study in Fellowship Hall
Sunday Morning Café -8:45am Sunday School -9:20 Worship Service -10:30am (also Kids' Church K5-3rd)
Hours-Monday -Thursday 8:00am-4:00pm. If you need to contact the Pastor On Call you can at any time by calling the Church Office 863-422-4488 and leaving a message in the “On Call” mailbox (ext. 2104) The Pastor that is on call for the week will return your call ASAP.