December 3, 2018

Dear FPC—I hope you are enjoying the first week of Advent!  As you practice waiting for Jesus, are you waiting with hope?  Hope gives us the power and courage to last through whatever challenges today brings.  We can survive because of the promises our faithful God has made and is keeping.  As we said on Sunday—always trust an unknown future to a known God!  Our God is faithful, he is trustworthy, and he understands us—that is what Jesus’ incarnation is all about. 

              I really want to encourage you to stop and connect with God each day this Advent while we wait for Jesus to arrive.  That is what our Advent Resources are for—please check them out and choose one, it is never too late to start!  The lovely Advent for Everyone books are available in the office for $11.  The Common Rule guide offers both a short reflection and a modern song to reflect on each day.  

              Personally, I am striving to observe the “no phone before scripture” rule each day to make connecting with God my first priority and then to not touch my phone while waiting to make connecting with others my next highest priority.  It is hard to change our habits! 

              If you wonder how to do a daily quiet time, here is an example for a 7 minute quiet time.  (we all have 7 minutes, right?)—

1) Prepare your heart (30 seconds)—just stop and ask God to cleanse your heart and to help you hear his voice as you read Scripture. 

2) Listen to God—4 minutes—read the Bible.  Let God’s word speak to you!  Not sure what to read?  Try Matthew or Luke this Christmas time, or come talk to me.

3) Talk to God—2 ½ minutes—pray!  No sure what to pray?  Remember ACTS—adoration (praise God for his greatness and his love), confession (let go of those things that separate you from God), thanksgiving (thank him for several specific things in your life, maybe even hardships), and supplication (ask God for what is on your heart—your needs and the needs of others). 

Seven minutes with God can change your day—and your life! 

You can check out more information on daily quiet times here. (and I’ve attached it to the email version of this letter).

 

2 things looking ahead—Christmas Eve is coming!  Invite your friends and family to join us for a wonderful candlelight service at 7 pm, and cookies and cocoa and coffee to follow! Also, Wangari is part of the Wasatch Master Chorale and they have two great events you can enjoy for free!  —the Messiah Sing-In at the Ogden Tabernacle on Sunday, Dec. 9 at 7 pm, go and sing along! And the Chorale’s Christmas concerts on December 14 and 15 at 7:30 at the Tabernacle.

See you on Sunday as we enjoy the peace that hope brings us. 

Jesus loves you, that is why we have Christmas at all!

Pastor Steve