Beyond Just Belief

Categories: Shared Thoughts

Pat and JoeDear Friends,

Communion Sunday!! And a Beautiful Sunday. Lots going on in the Christian community. It was one of those spectacular Music Sundays. The Le brothers one on cello and one on violin were a part of our service in solo, duets and in accompaniment. What talent Binh finds for our church and nurtures within our midst!

Talent Show Is Coming!! April 16th
and a Yummy Potluck with it.
This Saturday!! Food and fun! For some of us this will be a “talentless show”. But good fellowship is absolutely guaranteed! I have talked 3 of my grandkids into doing something ( well, one is 2 years old so the “talking into” wasn’t very hard!). But the teen age group is horror struck and not participating in my plans. I expect they will not be above eating however! Come and watch!!. And, if you really have talent you will be loved and surrounded by accolades!

Family Camp – Into The Wild
Coming soon and ready to be signed up for. May 20-22 at the Lazy W Ranch , only about 30 minutes away! Claire Burrill, 90, went last year and gave Three reasons why we should all participate.
1. It was like Family time – LNPC Family time Four generations were there! Babies to 90s.
2. Everyone knows everyone else and we like to talk
3. Great Facilities. Compared to her Mission Trip to Africa, Claire said these facilities are 4 star!
Talk to John Denton or Debbie Gara if you want to go. Or, sign up 24/7 on the church website. They just have way too much fun and fellowship at this LNPC gathering. Remember the varied ages – baby to 90+. Think that’s a wide enough range for you to fit in?? Scholarships available where needed.

Church Flowers
Don’t forget to sign up on the flower chart in the Narthex for your future week of flowers. Make out a $65 check to McCool Florists and take to church office or bring Sunday AM and put in offering plate . Remember the purpose of these flowers is for the beauty of the service but more importantly we Deacons take them after church to those who are not well or not able to come to the church service. It is so nice for them to receive and gives a cheery visit with them also. If you know of someone who needs a cheery bouquet please let me know!!

Our Pastor Nominating Committee
They are still working hard. We will have an update soon. I know they have plodded through lots of resumes and it is not an easy task. Now while hoping for more great candidates, they need to further vet some who could have promise. Good thing they were not fully aware of the many hours of time commitment before. Probably even more than they thought! By the way if you have heard of someone who might be a good candidate, please let one of the PNC committee members know. The people you know or a friend knows may be the best potentials! Don’t forget to pray for these hard working members who are taking so much of their personal time for our church: Fred Ehlers, Greg Heath, Carl Hess, Howard Hirakawa, Pat Kun, Stacy Malone, Brett Riordan, Cecil Spearman and Carol Stocksdale. They have a most important duty for the future of LNPC. Their responsibility is awesome!

Church Activities
1. Adult Classes
a. Open Door Bible Study. Currently in Spring Break -Usually Tuesdays at 2PM. Karen Vassey and Jean Shelton lead this class with a great group of people attending. Joe attends when he can
b. TGIF Growth Group – – 2nd and 4th Fridays of the month at 10:30 AM. Meets in Conference Room 2nd floor. “Thank God I’m Forgiven” Bible Study. Studying RC Sprouls “Hath God Said?”
2. Missions. – Our job is to spread God’s word and care for others as Christ’s disciples. We have so many projects of outreach. JoAnn Renning, whom I call “ The Lady of Perpetual Mission” is constantly reminding us of our responsibilities in charity.
Hands of Grace Meal Feed the homeless the first Wednesday of each month. Bring food and help serve and sit down and eat with these interesting people. It is not held at our church, the food is taken to Faith Episcopal Church in Laguna Niguel. You don’t have to stay, you can just drop off food if you prefer . Pastor Paul attends and several of our congregation. Call JoAnn Renning or the church office for more information.
Food Drive for South County Outreach –. We are always collecting food. Look for the barrel in the narthex and bring your non perishables. The need never ends! And if you want to help sort and work at this main Orange County center, they definitely need help. Joe has done that and enjoys it, but says it is definitely work

3. Fashion Show. Ladies!…. Save the date of May 14th Saturday to attend the Annual Fashion Show. at El Niguel Country Club. These proceeds are how many of our Mission Programs are funded!
4. Prayer Groups Monday mornings 8-8:30 in the sanctuary a group meets to pray for our church, our PNC , our church members and the person who will be called to be our Pastor. Come and join in prayer. Just show up.
5. The Gathering  Every Sunday at 4:30 -5:30 You have the opportunity to meet for Praise, Prayer and Fellowship. The Music is all Praise Music It’s held in Gard Hall. It’s a try to meet the needs of those who can’t come Sunday AM or those who prefer a more contemporary Worship style.
6. Training session for Stephen Ministry in co-op with Lutheran Church of the Cross . Meeting Tuesdays 6-8:30 PM at the Laguna Woods Lutheran Church on El Toro Road. Call Margaret Lee for more information ( 948-230-8999)
7. John Denton, LNPC Youth Director, is sponsoring a meeting for parents on Wednesday, May 18th 7-8 PM with Dr. Marc D. Skelton, Clinical Psychologist on “Teens and Mental Health” You can go to the church web site for more information. LNPC.org

Children’s Activities
1. John Denton’s Youth Group meets Mondays.5:30-7 PM. Location. The Garage. If your teens or your teen’s friends or your friend’s youth are available suggest they come. Everyone gets along and has fun. And they serve the church and our needs too. Thumbs up from my grandson
2. Confirmation Class started on November 18 and goes through May 15. That is on Wednesday 4-5PM 8th grade and above.
3. Children’s Choir practice is Mondays 4-5:30. LeeLee gives the Lifetime Treasure of Music to our children. 5 years plus. It provides experiences your children/grandchildren will never forget. My grandkids have been attending and they like it. Thank you LeeLee.
4. Pathfinders Wednesday’s at 3:30- 5:00. with Debbie Gara and her helpers. They are always doing great activities, being creative and learning too. Snacks, stories, games and art and crafts wuth Miss Susie!. In session again!
5. VBC. Vacation Bible Camp. July 11-15. 9-12. Get your calendar marked for kids or grandkids and neighbor and friend’s kids. And don’t forget to volunteer! We had so much fun last year.

Service Recap
Liturgist
Our own Parish member, Nancy LeBlanc was the Liturgist. Thank you Nancy

Service Music
Suk Choi always opens and closes our service with a lovely organ “concert”. Binh was back and the choir music was especially beautiful And, whenever the Le brothers visit with their instruments in hand it is a breathtaking Sunday And we must always remember Binh’s admonition that it is all for the Glory of God

Children’s Message
Some of the members of the Confirmation Class gave the children’s message along with John Denton. Joe Yanez, Jack Moorehead and Ben Roebuck. They did an excellent job in talking to the children about teachers:
What do teachers do for you?
Children’s answers:
1. They make you work
2. They teach you what is right and wrong?
3. They teach you not to shout out answers. You should raise your hand.
Yes, teachers do many things.
What kinds of examples do teachers set for us:
1. They are kind
2. They do not throw tantrums
Wow! We had better listen to what the children tell us. They know how mature adults should act. And this means they are absolutely prime for also comprehending Jesus and how to act as a good Christian

Scripture
Matthew 28: 16-20
“Jesus told his disciples to go forth and make disciples of all nations ……and remember I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
I Peter 1: 1-4 …
“….By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead……”
( Remember you must read the scripture from the Bible to get the real words of whole scriptures and not a paraphrase)

Sermon
“ Living As The Easter People”
. “Beyond Just Belief”

Pastor Paul Reeves

We don’t need to break the barriers because Jesus did it for us.

True believers receive the Holy Spirit. This is a transformation. Saul was transformed into Paul. Roman jailers were transformed when they received Christ. Macedonians were transformed and gave dollars to help people they did not know, an unheard of thing in those ancient days

We can become an Easter person in two ways – two parts
1. Baptism
Through this process God gets a hold in our lives. A beachhead with Christ in our life
2. Obeying the Commandments of Jesus
This is when our transformation truly begins. We
Perform what we Believe.

If you really want transformation in your life you need to move beyond “ just believing”
You must have obedience.

The Governor of Massachusetts was running for re election was at a fund raising dinner. He went through the line and came to the chicken. The server gave him one piece. He asked for a second and the server said she had been instructed to give only one per person. He decided to pull rank and said “ Do you know who I am? I’m the governor!” The lady serving the chicken said “Do you know who I am? I’m the caretaker of the chicken!”
That’s an example of obedience no matter what and this is what Jesus expects

Jesus said build your house upon the rock. And when you do if a huge storm comes, the foundation of your house is still strong

Follow Christ and your life’s foundation is built upon the Rock that never fails.

The first step in doing this is to make a conscious decision to move forward beyond just belief.

An exercise program example is good here. Many people decide they want to start an exercise regimen so they start to investigate and prepare for it. They order books, tapes, shoes, etc. But none of those things do them any good unless they use the things. They get no benefit.

The same thing is true with Christianity. You have to move forward beyond belief into living and using that knowledge and faith. You need to exercise the instructions for Christian living.

You have to be an apprentice for Jesus.

Love in Christ.❤
Your Deacons,
Pat and Joe