Making a Difference

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Making a Difference

      As I was walking through our NextGen space the other day, I was thinking back to when I was a little girl and attended Sunday school.  Back then, we had felt boards and the teacher would put the bible characters on the felt board as she told us the story.   What I vividly remember is that that I loved my teacher.  She loved kids; she loved Jesus and she made the stories come to life. I loved going to Sunday school.  Then, when I was a teenager, I had youth group leaders, Jack and Sally who were devoted to us teens. They spent time with us, prayed with us, they invested in each one of us. They lived out their faith right along with us. They all made a difference in my life.  They made a difference in my faith journey.  I am grateful for these people.

These memories made me think of the sermon that went along with our movie clip from Karate Kid. If you remember, the main point was that as Christ followers, we all need a Jethro- someone who pours into us and we all should have a Joshua, someone we can pour into. To make a difference in a kid’s life doesn’t have to require a HUGE commitment. There are opportunities that could have a big impact and possibly change a kid's life just by spending a few hours a week during Summer camp, or volunteering even one Sunday a month during NextGen.

These opportunities are here! Summer day camp starts on the 13th and we still have volunteer spots that need to be filled. Don't underestimate the impact of even a couple of hours spent helping out. If you can give a couple hours please click here to volunteer. 

And then, our NextGen program will resume on Sept 9th. (Our Christian Ed program has come ALONG way since the felt boards I grew up with) Kids aren’t sitting around tables anymore… they are learning through group activities, games, science, and art. Even one Sunday a month can have a big impact.  If you would like more info on NextGen, you can contact our NextGen site leader, Lisa Post at: postiel123@gmail.com.

 

We have close to 50 kids registered for day camp in Sandown and then 100 kids in Plaistow the week after. Please pray. Pray for the kids, pray for all the volunteers and leaders, pray that this summer at day camp will be the one that makes a difference in a kid’s life.

"If I could relive my life, I would devote my entire ministry to reaching children for God!"    — Dwight L. Moody, evangelist

 Stay Cool! See you in church on Sunday!    ~Pastor Beth 

                                                                                                     

 

 

 

 

 

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Easter's over......now what?

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Easter's over......now what?

Easter’s over, now what? Do we live or do anything differently? Should what we celebrated yesterday impact what we do today and tomorrow and the next day? I think so and that’s why I wanted to share an excerpt from a devotional I read this morning from Lysa TerKeurst.  What we celebrated yesterday should make a different in how we live and think today.  I hope you find encouragement in this as I did.

 In the midst of a world putting Easter away, might we let it sit with us for just a bit more?

Let's keep our Bible open to the place where the angel spoke to the women at the tomb. And allow our thoughts  to rest on His words from Matthew 28 as six prayers emerge ...

• "Do not be afraid," - God, I hand over to You those things that make me so afraid. Resurrect the parts of my faith squelched by fear.

• "I know that you are looking for Jesus," - God, when my soul is searching, help me know the answer to every longing can be found in You.

• "He has risen," - God, the fact that Jesus is risen should lift my head, my heart and my attitude. Help me to live today as if I really believe this with every part of my life.

• "just as he said," - Jesus, You keep Your promises. Help me live as though I believe that with every part of me. Help me trust You more, obey You more and resemble You more.

• "Come and see," - Jesus, You had the angels invite the women in to see for themselves that You had risen. You invite me into these personal revelations every day. Forgive me for sometimes rushing about and forgetting to come and see for myself ... You, Your Word, Your insights

• "Then go quickly and tell his disciples," - Jesus, I don't want to be a secret keeper with my faith. I want to be a bold and gracious truth proclaimer. For You. With You. Because of You.

In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Yes, let this miraculous Easter be personal. And prayerful. And linger a bit longer.

Remember those laughing babies we saw on the video Easter morning? No?! Did you miss it? Then you’ve got to come back this Sunday as we’ll play it again.  I’ve already seen it 3 times and want to see it again). JOY is contagious….. want some? Then I hope to see you Sunday as we start our new series on Got Joy? Until then…. be blessed and be a blessing!  . . . .  Pastor Beth 

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      I thought it might be a good idea to keep our Easter Out Reach initiatives on everyone's radar in case all this snow is fooling you into thinking that Spring and Easter is far, far away.  Easter is 2 weeks from this Sunday !     First of all, I want to thank everyone who has already offered to help in one way or another with our Easter outreach. We have people already praying for those who will be coming to our services. Post card invitations are being written and sent out. We are making progress with collecting enough candy and eggs for our Egg Hunt on the 24th. (Our goal is 1200 eggs)  Lawn signs are starting to pop up and we have a special Easter Hospitality training session this Sunday in Plaistow at 12:30 for hospitality teams from all campuses.(Lunch will be provided)  We still need a few more volunteers for the Egg hunt on the 24th. Please let me know if you would like to help out with this outreach to the kids in our community.   Originally, I wasn't sure about hosting an egg hunt. I thought that maybe “people” would think that we are trivializing Easter and treating it carelessly. But after some soul searching, I realize that hosting an egg hunt is an opportunity.    It’s a opportunity for kids in our community to see what we’re about,   where they might not come otherwise. It's an entry point for families to meet some of our leaders/teachers in a way that is comfortable and inviting in hopes that they will want to come again.    The biggest opportunity though, is being able to share the Easter story in an environment that is kid friendly and in a way that kids can relate to.     Everyone needs Jesus! Especially our kids and this could be the beginning of their faith journey. So, I hope you’ll pray for our Egg Hunt. Pray that kids will come; pray that their hearts will be open to the Easter story and pray that we see them and their families in worship.     

  

  	
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


     Train up a child in the way he should go.........   One last Reminder........    I CAN ONLY IMAGINE:   Rock Church will be hosting a private screening of the new movie, I Can Only Imagine at VisionMax Cinema in Salisbury, Ma this Saturday.  If you’d like more information or to reserve tickets  click here   Are you thinking about who you can invite to one of our Holy Week or Easter services? How about bringing some of your kid's friends to the Egg Hunt on the 24th? And don't forget the movie this Saturday... another great way to share the gospel.   I look forward to sharing this week's sermon with you....a little hint of what's to come.... take a look at the book of Nehemiah!                 See you Sunday ~  Pastor Beth  

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I thought it might be a good idea to keep our Easter Out Reach initiatives on everyone's radar in case all this snow is fooling you into thinking that Spring and Easter is far, far away.  Easter is 2 weeks from this Sunday !

 

First of all, I want to thank everyone who has already offered to help in one way or another with our Easter outreach. We have people already praying for those who will be coming to our services. Post card invitations are being written and sent out. We are making progress with collecting enough candy and eggs for our Egg Hunt on the 24th. (Our goal is 1200 eggs)  Lawn signs are starting to pop up and we have a special Easter Hospitality training session this Sunday in Plaistow at 12:30 for hospitality teams from all campuses.(Lunch will be provided)

We still need a few more volunteers for the Egg hunt on the 24th. Please let me know if you would like to help out with this outreach to the kids in our community.

Originally, I wasn't sure about hosting an egg hunt. I thought that maybe “people” would think that we are trivializing Easter and treating it carelessly. But after some soul searching, I realize that hosting an egg hunt is an opportunity.  It’s a opportunity for kids in our community to see what we’re about, where they might not come otherwise. It's an entry point for families to meet some of our leaders/teachers in a way that is comfortable and inviting in hopes that they will want to come again.

The biggest opportunity though, is being able to share the Easter story in an environment that is kid friendly and in a way that kids can relate to. 

 Everyone needs Jesus! Especially our kids and this could be the beginning of their faith journey. So, I hope you’ll pray for our Egg Hunt. Pray that kids will come; pray that their hearts will be open to the Easter story and pray that we see them and their families in worship.

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Train up a child in the way he should go.........

One last Reminder........

I CAN ONLY IMAGINE:  Rock Church will be hosting a private screening of the new movie, I Can Only Imagine at VisionMax Cinema in Salisbury, Ma this Saturday.  If you’d like more information or to reserve tickets click here

Are you thinking about who you can invite to one of our Holy Week or Easter services? How about bringing some of your kid's friends to the Egg Hunt on the 24th? And don't forget the movie this Saturday... another great way to share the gospel. 

I look forward to sharing this week's sermon with you....a little hint of what's to come.... take a look at the book of Nehemiah!               

See you Sunday ~  Pastor Beth  

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God of Miracles

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God of Miracles

Greetings Rock Church Sandown~

I have had a song running through mind since last Saturday afternoon as we sat on a school bus (which had broken down) in the church parking lot, waiting for a replacement to take us to the airport for our flight to Houston. All in all, we waited over an hour and by the time we got to the airport, through security and at our gate, they were boarding the plane. “Whew ”.

   I love how God works to remind me that He is in control. The song?  God of miracles come, we need your super natural love to break through. Nothing’s impossible; you’re the God of miracles.  “Amen to that” ! 

Normally on a mission trip, we would hit the ground running but not this year. Due to 2 weeks of rain, there was no foundation to build on and further more, inspections would be needed. Things were not looking good. God of miracles come, we need your super natural love to break through.

Low and behold, on Monday afternoon, the foundation got poured, and before the end of the day, the inspector came by and we were good to go for the morning.

     Nothing’s impossible; you’re the God of miracles.  

God reminded me more then once during our trip, that He is the God of the impossible and I want to encourage any of you who may be feeling defeated, over-whelmed, stressed out or ready to give up, to hold on!  Look up! Keep trusting! Nothing’s impossible; He’s the God of miracles. (Luke 18:27)

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I CAN ONLY IMAGINE:  Rock Church will be hosting a private screening of the new movie, I Can Only Imagine at VisionMax Cinema in Salisbury, Ma on Sat, March 17th.  This is an incredible movie telling the true story of Bart Millard, lead singer of MercyMe, and his incredible journey to write the song of the same name.  If you’d like more information or to reserve tickets click here

For Our Community- Easter Egg Hunt

Each Rock Church campus will be hosting an Egg Hunt for kids in our communities. The Egg Hunt in Sandown will take place on Sat. March 24th in conjunction with the PTA pancake breakfast. There are many ways in which you can help make this outreach event a success. You can help by donating plastic eggs and candy. And if you want to go ALL out, bring the eggs already filled with wrapped candy. There will be a bin in the lobby for your donations.

We will also need volunteers on the day of the Egg Hunt to help with hospitality, hiding eggs and as guides. If you are interested in helping please contact Pastor Beth at beth@rock-church.org.

We still have plenty of Joyful Easter yard signs still available.  You can get yours from the lobby on Sunday.  

As we are fast approaching Easter, I want to encourage you to be thinking and praying about whom you can invite to join us for any of our outreach events or special services that will be held during Holy Week and especially to our Easter Celebration Service on Easter morning. Do you know someone who needs Jesus? This is the perfect time to extend an invitation.

I look forward to seeing you in worship on Sunday. God Bless, Pastor Beth 

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Everyone Needs Jesus

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Please take a moment to pray for the families and friends of those that were taken so tragically in the horrific acts of violence in Parkland, FL. We are constantly reminded of the brokenness that exists on this side of heaven and we grieve with those that are suffering.

"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed."             Psalm 34:18

In times like this, once again we are left speechless.... or maybe not.... maybe we're so angry at the injustice that we just want to SCREAM !!   I believe there's a righteous anger that demands action. First and foremost we must pray. We must pray for the families and communities affected by this evil act. Let us pray for the faith community in Parkland to rise up and  be the hands and feet of Christ to those who are grieving and hurting.  And let us understand that when we repeat our Core Values every Sunday, although it may sound simplistic to say that; "EVERYONE NEEDS JESUS", it's true!  Tragic events like this remind us of how true this is and should motivate us to share our faith. It's our responsibility, honor, and privilege to share the hope we have in Christ so that a broken and hurting world can be less so. It's not simplistic; it's vital. Even if it's one person at a time!  

 

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It's a New Year

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It's a New Year

So, how’s your New Year going so far?   Has anyone applied the suggestions that pastor Steve offered us from his message on 12/31? ( Let me refresh your memory…… Forgive Quickly, Risk Boldly, Live Generously, Leave Margin, Practice Self Care.) In the conversations I’ve had with people since that message, everyone came away knowing which area(s) they needed/wanted to work on. There were 3 out of the 5  that I know I could use some work and improvement on. How about you? 

If one of your goals for the new year was to learn or understand more of the Bible, then you’re going to love the sermon series that just started, From Creation to the Cross. From now until Easter we will be studying the key stories/stepping stones from the Old Testament and how they all work together to lead us to Jesus. You will see and understand how God works through and in all things. This is going to be a great series, I hope you are able to be with us each Sunday! 

Coming Up……..

UMCOR Disaster Training Saturday, January 13th at the Rock Plaistow 9 am-1:30 pm.  Join us for this important training that addresses disaster and human-caused threats. It runs 9 am to 1:30 pm with a light lunch included and the cost is $10 per person. Register online at the following link: https://neumc-reg.brtapp.com/ConnectingNeighborsPreparingforNaturalDisastersandHuman-CausedThreats-January132018

 

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At Rock Church Ministries it is our goal to make everyone feel welcome and at home and it takes a team of dedicated and devoted men, women and youth to achieve that on a weekly basis. Our hospitality team is an essential part of the church experience.  If you would like to be involved in an exciting and fun ministry and help make the experience great for the people coming through our doors we would love to talk to you. 

 Pastor's Note- every week, as part of the announcements we state that we are a church that believes everyone needs Jesus, we are all meant to Grow and gifted to Serve .... let me ask you, are you serving ? If not yet, then maybe the Hospitality team is a place for you to start. Let me know if you're interested in becoming more involved and ready to serve ! beth@rock-church.org

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Love... Joy... Hope... Peace

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Love... Joy... Hope... Peace

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Does anyone have one of these signs from last year? If so, have you put it out? I did !

Merry Christmas! I trust that what you have been hearing on Sunday mornings has helped you to fully experience the wonder of this season. We began with promise.  The birth of Jesus was the fulfillment of the promise God made to the Jews, and the introduction of the promise he was making to all the world.  Last week we talked about hope.  In the midst of our times of despair, discouragement, fear and struggle, in our darkest days, the birth of Jesus brought the light of hope. I hope you will be able to join us for worship this coming Sunday as we continue to Unwrap the True Meaning of Christmas.

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We invite anyone who would like to purchase and place a poinsettia plant on the altar in honor or memory of someone, to do so by Sat Dec 23rd.  If you would like the name of your loved one listed, please submit it to Kristen by 12/21 at: Kristen@stmattumc.org. 

 

Christmas Eve Services

In addition to our regular Sunday morning worship schedule we will be offering Christmas Eve Candlelight services at all campuses at the following times.                   

Sandown at 4:00 ~ ~ Plaistow at 4:00 & 6:00 ~~ Amesbury at 4:00

Christmas Eve is a time when we expect to have many guests. We want to make sure our guests feel welcome and comfortable.  Here's how you can help:

*PARKING- If you are able to walk, please park at the Town Hall, Food Pantry Lot or at the Depot  (Let's make sure guests have a place to park).

* SEATING-If you have a seat in the sanctuary but notice that we are starting to seat people in the lobby:  GIVE UP YOUR SEAT for a GUEST.    (You trade your sanctuary seat for one in the lobby).

* INVITE- Is there someone you could/should invite to Christmas Eve service?      (This could be a life changing event for someone).

I look forward to worshipping with you on Sunday. We still gather for prayer at 8 am, will you join me?   

~God Bless! Pastor Beth

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Advent

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Advent

Do you know what the word, Advent means?  Advent comes from the Latin word adventus, which means "coming". It is the four-week preparation period before Christmas that is to prepare our hearts and minds for the coming of Christ, both at his first coming as a child in Bethlehem, and the second at his second coming in glory. 

So, as Advent is about to begin, let me ask you this. Have you given any thought to how you will prepare your heart and mind for Christmas?  I’m not talking about the external activities….. the decorating, shopping/wrapping, baking and other traditions that we enjoy during this season. I’m talking about those things that we do that keep Christ at the forefront during this season and allow us to experience the very things that He came to give us.  Love, Hope, Joy, Peace, Comfort

Sadly, I will admit that there have been years when the preparing of my heart and mind was not my first priority and the peace, comfort and joy that I was singing about were just words on a page. I basically missed the true meaning of Christmas. I have vowed to not allow that to happen again. This means that I have to be intentional with a few things. I will make a point to have my daily devotional time.  I will make my Life Group and time in Sunday worship a priority. I will not over load my schedule to the point of exhaustion. I will not over spend so that I am still paying off Christmas in June.  I will look for ways to bless others.... even if just a simple gesture like allowing someone to cut in front of me in line or traffic.                                                                         

I hope that you will ensure ways for yourself and your family to prepare your hearts and minds to truly celebrate and experience the coming of Christmas!

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       Christmas Carol                Sing-a-Long        and Dessert

 

Join us Sunday, December 3rd at 6:00 pm in Sandown as we welcome in the Advent season with our traditional Carol Sing and Dessert. 

Everyone is invited to bring a dessert to share and wear your most festive Christmas attire !

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      FOR OUR COMMUNITY ~  The Giving Tree

The Giving Tree that is in the lobby is filled with cards that have an item on them that a child would like to have for Christmas.  Every year we are blessed to be able help families in our community that need a little assistance during the holiday season in providing Christmas gifts for their family. If you would like to help out a family, take a card.  All the details are on the back of the card.  

Thank you in advance for helping with this outreach!

    Join us this Sunday as we start our Advent series, Unwrapping the True Meaning of Christmas.

                                                                                                                                                        God Bless~Pastor Beth 

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      I have found that the most impactful worship songs and anthems have resulted from a song writer’s personal experience and spiritual journey. This is especially true about the anthem that our choir will be singing on the 19th and 27th written by Patrick Henderson.  The lyrics are : I will give thanks, unto the Lord, for He has done, yes He has done marvelous things. He lifted me up, He rescued me. He is my strength, He is my peace. I will give thanks unto the Lord.     From the words, one could think that the song writer had a blessed life, right?  Well, it was blessed but not in the way you may think. Here is his testimony.  Patrick Henderson was a song writer and producer. He was a music director, choir director and pianist. Patrick’s life changed forever one night, while at home when someone broke in and he was attacked. The assailant used a machete on Patrick’s face and then severed his hand. He was left to die but he didn’t. He did spend 3 months in a coma, months in the hospital with multiple surgeries and ended up very mad at God.  “What now God?” “Why did you allow this to happen?” “why my hand? my life and my career is over.” In that very dark and desperate time, God spoke to him and he wrote the words to the song, I Will Give Thanks. The second verse goes like this:”  He looked down that day when I thought my hope was gone, he said, oh no my child, you’ve only just begun. I will give thanks unto the Lord”.    I attended a workshop a few summers ago that Patrick led. At that point he was back to writing and producing, directing his choir and he played the piano with his re-attached hand!   I wanted to share this story with you as a way to encourage you. What may seem like an impossible circumstance is God’s chance to do the miraculous.  When you think your hope is gone, I hope you hear Him say, “oh no my child, you’ve only just begun”.  So give thanks unto the Lord !        

  

  	
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


          Community Thanksgiving                     Dinner       On Thanksgiving day Nov 23rd from 11:30 AM - 1PM we will be doing a brand new outreach, providing a full Thanksgiving dinner for anyone who would like to join us.  Who might attend a free Thanksgiving dinner?  Those who have no family near by.  Those who can’t afford to prepare or do not have the means to prepare a Thanksgiving dinner.  The elderly.  Or people who just want to share this time with friends and neighbors.    We could use help with donations of food and also preparing of the food.  We are also providing transportation where needed, so we will need drivers.    Sign up to cook a turkey, bring a pie, help to serve, drive etc…( Click here to volunteer ). We need 25-30 people          SPAGHETTI DINNER FUND RAISER  I hope you will join us this Saturday to enjoy a delicious meal while supporting the mission team’s next trip to Texas. Dinner will be served from 5 to 7 at St Matts.  (Donations of pies for dessert are still needed. Contact Sue at   suzannereynolds08@comcast.net  if you want to help in this way)   

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I have found that the most impactful worship songs and anthems have resulted from a song writer’s personal experience and spiritual journey. This is especially true about the anthem that our choir will be singing on the 19th and 27th written by Patrick Henderson.

The lyrics are: I will give thanks, unto the Lord, for He has done, yes He has done marvelous things. He lifted me up, He rescued me. He is my strength, He is my peace. I will give thanks unto the Lord.  

From the words, one could think that the song writer had a blessed life, right?  Well, it was blessed but not in the way you may think. Here is his testimony.

Patrick Henderson was a song writer and producer. He was a music director, choir director and pianist. Patrick’s life changed forever one night, while at home when someone broke in and he was attacked. The assailant used a machete on Patrick’s face and then severed his hand. He was left to die but he didn’t. He did spend 3 months in a coma, months in the hospital with multiple surgeries and ended up very mad at God.

“What now God?” “Why did you allow this to happen?” “why my hand? my life and my career is over.” In that very dark and desperate time, God spoke to him and he wrote the words to the song, I Will Give Thanks. The second verse goes like this:” He looked down that day when I thought my hope was gone, he said, oh no my child, you’ve only just begun. I will give thanks unto the Lord”. 

I attended a workshop a few summers ago that Patrick led. At that point he was back to writing and producing, directing his choir and he played the piano with his re-attached hand! 

I wanted to share this story with you as a way to encourage you. What may seem like an impossible circumstance is God’s chance to do the miraculous.  When you think your hope is gone, I hope you hear Him say, “oh no my child, you’ve only just begun”.  So give thanks unto the Lord !

 

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    Community Thanksgiving                     Dinner    

On Thanksgiving day Nov 23rd from 11:30 AM - 1PM we will be doing a brand new outreach, providing a full Thanksgiving dinner for anyone who would like to join us.  Who might attend a free Thanksgiving dinner?  Those who have no family near by.  Those who can’t afford to prepare or do not have the means to prepare a Thanksgiving dinner.  The elderly.  Or people who just want to share this time with friends and neighbors.  

We could use help with donations of food and also preparing of the food.  We are also providing transportation where needed, so we will need drivers.    Sign up to cook a turkey, bring a pie, help to serve, drive etc…(Click here to volunteer). We need 25-30 people

        SPAGHETTI DINNER FUND RAISER

I hope you will join us this Saturday to enjoy a delicious meal while supporting the mission team’s next trip to Texas. Dinner will be served from 5 to 7 at St Matts.  (Donations of pies for dessert are still needed. Contact Sue at  suzannereynolds08@comcast.net if you want to help in this way)

 

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Be Bold

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Be Bold

 

I was thinking of last Sunday's sermon about going deeper in prayer and it brought to mind something that is a pet peeve of mine. It actually is the use of a four-letter word. You may be wondering what a four letter word has to do with prayer and that’s exactly my point. It’s the word “just”.  I don’t have a problem with the word in general but I do when it’s used in prayer. For example, “Lord, we just ask that you help so and so with their job search”, or “Father, we just come before you today to thank you.” 

Why “just”?  It almost sounds apologetic to me. Do we add that word because we think if we do then our request seems less bothersome? Are we trying to make it somehow “a little thing” so God will be more apt to hear and answer us? ( it reminds me of when I was a little girl and I would beg my mom to let me stay up later and I would say, “just 5 more minutes”? ) Is the prayer we’re praying not worth the Lord’s attention? ( of course it is) The Lord loves it when we call on Him, talk with Him, bring our cares and concerns to Him, acknowledge Him in all things.

I want to encourage you to pray bold, faith-filled prayers as Hebrews 4:16 instructs us to do and can we please leave out that 4 letter word ?

 

Spaghetti Dinner to benefit Texas

Mission Team preparing to Help Rebuild 

Please mark your calendar and plan on attending the Spaghetti Dinner Fund Raiser on Sat. November 18th from 5-7pm at St Matts. All proceeds will be used to purchase materials needed when the mission team returns to Texas to help with a rebuilding project.  The cost for the dinner is by donation. In addition to coming to the dinner, you can help by providing a home baked pie for dessert. If you want to help in this way please contact Sue Reynolds at: suzannereynolds08@comcast.net

Last Sunday, the choir and I were worshipping at our Amesbury campus. I look forward to being back in Sandown with you for worship this week. I hope you will join us as we continue in our current series -Deeper. 

We will continue to have prayer at 8am!   

 God Bless, Pastor Beth

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“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.

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“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.

This past weekend, Joe and I (and Jack) went away. Although I had plenty of work to do, I knew that what I needed more was to refresh my mind and relax a little. Sometimes you just need to have a change of scenery. There is something about being out in nature, away from distractions (electronics) and just "be" in God's presence. My spirit and my mind were refreshed. My "to do" list, the concerns on my mind and heart just seemed to dim in light of His presence, felt in creation.  I get why people like to camp.... well, not so much the camping part but the getting away part, experiencing God's power in what He created. Romans 1:20 explains the concept well, For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 

Please don't misinterpret my point. I am not saying that we should close the church doors and spend our Sundays out in the woods or on the golf course, on the lake, in a deer stand etc. instead, what I am saying is that sometimes it's beneficial to unplug, change our scenery, simplify our life and sense His presence in HIs creation.

 I am looking forward to our new sermon series which we will start this Sunday, called Deeper. Whether you are a new Christian or "mature" in your faith, there will be something that all of us can learn and grow from. I hope you will join us!

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Please don't forget that everyone is invited to come at 8am Sunday morning to pray!

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 For Our Community-

We are almost at our goal for the amount of candy we will need and decorated trunks.  Thank you to all you have helped so far. In addition, we need volunteers to help out in our NextGen space (making popcorn, handing out candy etc) and also needed are trays of cookies and people who will make coffee and provide hospitality to our guests. Help us provide a safe and fun evening for our kids while providing an opportunity for folks to see our NextGen space.  If you can help out in any area please contact Sherri Nourse at Sherri_Nourse@yahoo.com . Thank you !

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Coffee with Helen

Ladies Only~ Join us Saturday Oct 28th at 9:30 for Coffee with Helen. Helen Minerella is a gifted speaker with a passion for seeing the Holy Spirit move in His church.  It's not too late to have your question added to the discussion. Send Pastor Beth your question at beth@rock-church.org for Helen. Refreshments will be served and a Free Will offering will be taken.

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Spectators are welcome to watch and cheer on the runners at the Rock Run Raiser.  There is a small fee for admission. Click here to register!

 

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Real Hope !

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Real Hope !

                 

Oh, how our world needs real hope and healing. (Sound familiar?) The news lately can be overwhelming to the point of feeling hopeless but God has promised us, "if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land."                  

Do you believe this? then Join me for prayer on Sunday at 8am.

 

Ladies~ on Oct 28th Helen Minerella will be joining us for a casual conversational time together from 9:30-12:00 in Sandown. Helen will be answering your questions over coffee. (Questions should be submitted to Pastor Beth ahead of time at beth@rock-church.org)

 

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For Our Community- Help us provide a safe and fun evening for our kids while providing an opportunity for folks to see our NextGen space.  We will need donations of candy (LOTS of candy) decorated cars in family friendly themes and volunteers. If you would like to be involved please contact Sherri Nourse at Sherri_Nourse@yahoo.com

 

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          Sometimes when it's hard to pray, I sing.  As I sing, I start to feel His presence and His peace. I pray the same for you. Looking forward to seeing you on Sunday ! Pastor Beth ~

When darkness veils His lovely face,
I rest on His unchanging grace;
In every high and stormy gale,                                                                                                                                                                      My anchor holds within the veil.                                                             

His oath, His covenant, His blood
Support me in the whelming flood;
When all around my soul gives way,                                                                                                                                                             He then is all my hope and stay.                                                       

On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand,
All other ground is sinking sand.

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No more complaining.

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No more complaining.

I have a confession to make, lately I’ve becoming more aware that I have a tendency to complain about dumb, insignificant things and I’ve got to nip it in the bud.  I say to myself that, “this is such a first world problem”, which reminds me that I’m being ridiculous.

(Definition of first world problem: a usually minor or trivial problem or annoyance experienced by people in relatively affluent or privileged circumstances especially as contrasted with problems of greater social significance facing people in poor and underdeveloped parts of the world) 

Maybe some of you are you wondering what I was complaining about.  Well, I had the nerve to complain that the ice cream I wanted was in the freezer in the garage and I had to go outside to get it. Pathetic, right? I know !! Not a proud moment but none the less, it is a truth. I have come to realize that when I was keeping a daily gratitude journal my attitude was definitely better and I was less apt to complain but be more thankful. I went and found my journal.

So, today I start being more intentional with noting all the things I have to be thankful for.  

 

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Do you believe that prayer changes things?  I do ! Do you want to see God move in our church and our community? I do. Then join me for prayer at 8am before our Sunday service begins. Please feel free to come in and join us, even if you are a little late, just enter quietly.                      All are welcome!

 

  Ladies- mark your calendars for Oct 28th for Coffee with Helen                                     

                                Helen Minerella

                              Helen Minerella

   Helen Minerella will be joining us for a casual conversational time together from 9:30-12:00. Helen will be answering your questions over coffee. (Questions should be submitted to Pastor Beth ahead of time at beth@rock-church.org)

 

I pray that God has been using this current sermon series, Real Hope, to show you that whatever it is you might be struggling with, He is the answer.  I hope to see you all in worship this Sunday.

God Bless~

Pastor Beth

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Prayer

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Prayer

 

Happy Friday Church!

I wasn’t going to write a blog this week as my “to do” list was pretty long but I have since changed my mind.  And I have changed my mind for one reason and that is to invite you to join me Sunday morning at 8 am to pray.  I am looking for people to join me who will not only pray for our morning worship time together but also pray for our church, our community, our kids and for each other.  

     The effective fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much

 I look forward to seeing you on Sunday! 

               ~Pastor Beth

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Do you ever wonder why?

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Do you ever wonder why?

Some pics from the weekend.....Old Home Day, First day of NextGen,  Beach BBQ and Baptism service and foot washing

Do you ever wonder “why”? I’m not talking in a spiritual sense, like asking God why certain things happen, but more along the lines of, “why do we do what we do”? I wondered that at 5:30 am Sat morning as I jumped out of bed, 45 minutes behind schedule because my alarm was set to PM not AM….(don’t judge) “Why am I getting up this early on a Saturday”?  “Why are we dragging all this stuff out to sit in a field for 5 hours and give away waters and freeze pops”? “Why do we go to such lengths to be a presence in our community”? 

Well, come Sunday, that question was answered. We had 4 new kids attend NextGen after coming to a Free Movie Night or stopping by our booth at Sandown Old Home Day and we had 2 new families come to worship Sunday after eating at the pancake breakfast. One of our visitors on Sunday told me that she was touched by the fact that our church was not looking to get something from the community but impressed with how we were trying to bless our community. So, if like me, you have ever wondered if what we do matters, I want to encourage you with a resounding YES!! 

A big THANK YOU to all who helped at Old Home Day and the Pancake Breakfast!

We have started our new Fall series entitled, Real Hope. It’s going to be excellent and I know you will want to join us Sunday to hear this encouraging word.  (Invite a friend so that they too may be encouraged by the hope that is only found in Jesus.)   

God Bless your week!

   ~Pastor Beth

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Transitions.......

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Transitions.......

I lead my first mini service at Fox Den this morning. (Fox Den is a retirement community in Sandown). We had 17 residents attend the service and they were very gracious and welcoming to me, the new pastor. My time there today brought back a memory I haven't thought of for a while. When I was a little girl, my mom and dad would stop and pick-up Mr Olsen for church. He was an older gentleman with no family.  (I am being kind when I say older as he was really OLD).  He would get in the backseat and sit next to me; he smelled of moth balls and after shave. His hand would shake as he rested it on the seat next to me. His hands were time worn with arthritis and age spots.  He never said much other then thank you when my dad would help him in and out of the car each week. This was not a huge undertaking for my parents but it certainly was a blessing to Mr Olsen. A simple act of kindness meant the world to an OLD man and left a lasting impression on a little girl. Maybe that's why I enjoyed my time at Fox Den this morning, legacies can start at young ages.

I want to thank Sue, Betty and Al and Wayne for their commitment to Fox Den as their way of serving For Our Community.

This is going to be a fantastic weekend for us at Rock Church Sandown; I hope to see you throughout the weekend.                                                                                                                      God Bless,  Pastor Beth

  Please join us at Old Home Day this Saturday  

             We will be hosting a FREE Pancake Breakfast at the Rec Center from 7-10am

                                           Wear your For Our Community T-shirts

 

 

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NextGen starts this Sunday at 10am.

Groups for age 4 through High School 

 

We will be taking a special offering for those effected by Hurricane Harvey this Sunday. 

 

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Looking Ahead...

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Looking Ahead...

What a great weekend that just passed! Family Movie Night in Sandown was a blast and well attended. The women had a great time at their BBQ on Saturday…..they worked off those calories in a very fun way and of course, the men had their retreat and came back renewed and refreshed. “Thank you” to all of you who made those events so successful.

We have ALOT to look forward to in the next week or so.
Please take a minute to read through

Choir Starts this Thursday at 7:30 and will end with dessert and fellowship
Please contact Pastor Beth if you’re interested in joining choir.

Sandown Old Home Day is September 9th.
For our Community- Free Pancake Breakfast
At the Rec Center- 25 Pheasant Run Dr. 7:30am-10:00
Help is still needed at 10:00 to Breakdown and Clean up
We will also be giving away water and freeze pops during the day.
We need donations of water bottles.
These can be brought to St Matts anytime before the 9th

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Begins Sunday- September 10th at 10:00am
age 4 through High School
You can register on line at: cometotheparty.org or on site on Sunday

Rock Church Family BBQ and Baptism Service
Sept 10th at 1:00 at Camp Tasker
36 Country Pond Rd Newton, NH

Alive Retreat For Women with guest Speaker Kelly Latta
Fri, Sept 29 - 6:45 pm – 8 pm Sat, Sept 30 - 9am – 3 pm at Rock Church Plaistow
For more information or to register online go to  rock-church.org/womens-ministry/
Contact Tracy Meola at tmeola@comcast.net for more information.

 

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Forgive...Love....Serve.....

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Forgive...Love....Serve.....

This past Sunday was special. I want to clarify that I think every Sunday is special or at least it should be, but the reason I say this about last Sunday is that I got to see answers to prayer right before my very eyes. I witnessed the “church” in action being the hands and feet of Christ.  I witnessed two friends who had been at odds for a while, warmly and genuinely greet each other with a smile and a hug after a period of hurt and misunderstanding.  I was given a hug by a very special person who on Wednesday was in an operating room due to a heart attack and quite frankly, not sure how that was going to turn out. I saw an overflowing container of school supplies that had been collected for families in town who need a little help and then a basket pretty full of money that had been collected for another family that lost everything in a fire. I saw first hand the power of prayer for reconciliation and healing and I saw people putting their faith into action by helping others in need.  I think there might be something to this series we’re in….. Love one another, Serve one another, Forgive one another….. don’t you?

I look forward to sharing the next message in our one another series with you this Sunday.   Men have an awesome retreat; we will be praying for you!   God bless.       ~  Pastor Beth

 

 This Friday- FREE Family Movie Night- SING-  7pm 

Free PopCorn, snacks, Games and Give-aways.

NEXTGEN Open House at 6:30

      NextGen workers/volunteers- Training MtgThu Aug 24th at the Rock- Plaistow 6-8

LADIES

Women’s BBQ- Aug 26th at 5pm at the Rock- Plaistow

Come and enjoy some great food and fellowship.

Please bring a side dish or dessert to share.

Kids are welcome!

Mark your calendars Ladies for Sept 28th and 29th

Ladies 2 day Retreat- ALIVE at the Rock- Plaistow

Childcare will be available

Register now on line at achurch4all.org or at each campus

Coming in September

Sandown Old Home Day- Sept 9th

For our Community- Free Pancake Breakfast - 7:30-10:00

Seeking donations of water bottles and Volunteer Help

NEXTGEN- Sept 10th.

                                       Registrations now being accepted on line at: achurch4all.org or at each campus

   Rock Church BBQ and Baptism Service ~ Camp Tasker-Newton, NH . If you’re interested in being baptized in the lake, notify Kristin at kristin@stmattuc.org. 

 

 

 

Register now on line

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Love One Another

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Love One Another

        I received an email from a friend whom I recently reconnected with from High School. We have been catching each other up on our lives and have committed to praying for one another. The prayer she sent me today, so resonated with the words from yesterday’s sermon about loving one another, I wanted to share her prayer with you and also make it mine for each and every one of you.

My prayer for you and I today, is that the Lord will use our pain, our hurts, and our struggles to help heal/grow someone else in their own walk in Jesus' sweet name. 

May they draw closer to Him as we speak truth, meeting them right where they are, in the middle of their junk, as Jesus did when he walked the earth. No judgement; just love and acceptance. 

May we be rest for weary souls...

And, may we be His hands, His feet as we move through the world, and may others be drawn to Jesus in us. May they see that we choose joy, and that they can too!

I pray that the Lord will place people in our path, today, who need a dose of His truth, grace and mercy. May we be bold as we share our own redemption stories, for His glory, and may we be good listeners; help us to hear with our hearts, and not just our ears, Jesus.

And ...           

may we be still, so that our savior can fight for us, as we've been promised He will do.

Choosing joy, today!   

 

Our last FREE Family Movie Night of the summer will be Aug 25th at 7pm .

NEXTGEN OPEN HOUSE at 6:30 PM

August’s movie is SING !

Invite your friends ~ FREE popcorn and snacks     games and give aways

 

               Coming up in SEPTEMBER              

 September 9th  Sandown Old Home Day

      FOR OUR COMMUNITY OUTREACH

Starting bright and early at 7:30 am, we will be hosting a FREE pancake breakfast at the Rec Center- 25 Pheasant Run Dr  In addition, we will have a booth offering FREE water and freeze pops throughout the day.  Many volunteers will be needed.   

                              Donations of cases of water will be gratefully accepted         

 

      September 10th - Rally Day (NEXTGEN begins) 

Our annual Church BBQ and Baptism service will be on Sept 10th at Camp Tasker in Newton, NH. If you are interested in being baptized in the lake this year, please contact Kristen at: kristen@stmattumc.org

                                                            Some pics from last week !  

 

I hope this week brings you opportunities to love on the people in your life.  Whether it’s a monumental sacrifice that will be very costly or the continual small acts of love that let those around you know how much you care and allow them to see Jesus in you. Never underestimate the power of love and kindness. Until Sunday…… God Bless, Pastor Beth

 

 

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August already?

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August already?

Wow! Is anyone else having a hard time believing it’s August already?  The Back-to school commercials are already on (if I was a kid, I would hate that!). Personally, I look forward to fall each year; it’s my favorite season, especially in New England. But I am especially excited for it this year because we will be launching our NextGen program at all three campuses. You should start to see transformation taking place in our “Sunday School” space. This new endeavor is a lot of work and comes at significant cost, but it’s an investment that I believe will be well worth the time and money. 

I spent a day up at Soulfest last week. Someone asked me which band I wanted to see, I told them, “I didn’t care” as I just wanted to spend time with our group and share in the “experience” that is Soulfest. (OK, I cheated a little,…. I didn’t sleep on the ground, get sun burn or stuck in a torrential downpour which happens at least once during the week.) But what I did get, was to see some of the kids that I had in youth choir quite a few years ago, that have grown into some pretty terrific young adults, thriving in that environment. Aside from feeling a little old, I felt proud and fortunate to see how these kids have grown in their faith and relationships with one another and their leaders! I attribute much of that to their faithful attendance in church and Sunday school, at youth group and in choir and to parents who were diligent and teachers and leaders who were dedicated. Our message won’t change but how we deliver it has to. There’s too much at stake to not make every effort in providing an environment that kids want to come to, where they feel welcomed and can learn how to develop their own relationship with Christ.

Meetings for all volunteers/leaders of NextGen will be Aug 20th and Sept 3rd, immediately following worship. 

 

     Open Invitation

 Every year thousands of babies die from sudden infant death syndrome.   Kristen Gondolfo is organizing a special remembrance celebration for her daughter, Isabella who passed away to SIDS in 2006. This will take place at St. Matthews on Thursday August 10th at 6:00 pm.  The Gondolfo family would like to extend an invitation to all, not only to celebrate the life of Isabella on her birthday but also remember the life of each of these babies who are no longer with us.  This is an open invitation to our church family and community. 

 

              Our last FREE Family Movie Night will be Aug 25th at 7pm .

Our last movie of the summer will be ~ SING.

Invite your friends ~ FREE popcorn and snacks, games and give aways 

 

Reminder that the deadline for donating School Supplies is Aug 20th.  If making a financial donation, please make your check out to CARE ministry with school supplies in the memo line.

 

HERO CENTRAL DAY CAMP will be held the week of August 14th – 18th at our Rock Church Plaistow location (currently only $39 for registration!).  If you have a child going into K-8th grade, or know someone who may be interested in attending, we’d love to have them!  We’re also in need of volunteers to help out before, during and after the week so if you have some time and a desire to bless our community while pouring into the next generation, we’d love to have you!  Registrations for campers or volunteers are available online at http://2017.cokesburyvbs.com/rockchurch.

                 Coming up in SEPTEMBER              

September 9th  Sandown Old Home Day

      FOR OUR COMMUNITY OUTREACH

Starting bright and early at 7:30 am, we will be hosting a FREE pancake breakfast at the Rec Center.  In addition, we will have a booth offering FREE water and freeze pops throughout the day. 

               Many volunteers will be needed.                

 

September 10th - Rally Day (NEXTGEN begins) 

Our annual Church BBQ and Baptism service will be on Sept 10th at Camp Tasker in Newton, NH. If you are interested in being baptized in the lake this year, please contact Kristen at: kristen@stmattumc.org

I hope you have the opportunity to enjoy this lovely summer weather and while you may be taking time away for vacation that you stay faithful in your alone time with the Lord. I hope to see you all in worship this Sunday!       God Bless, Pastor Beth

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