Hi Amesbury friends! I hope you are enjoying some relief from this cold, snowy weather we've been having. Despite the frigid temperatures, I find myself feeling grateful this week, particularly for all of you. I'm especially grateful for the times when we are able to come together and truly be "the church" in the way that God intended so that we can fulfill our first core conviction, that EVERYONE NEEDS JESUS. Some of my favorite verses in the Bible come from chapter 2 of the Book of Acts where the early church is described so beautifully:
"They devoted themselves to the apostlesʼ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”
Last week in my email I also mentioned our second core conviction, that EVERYONE IS GIFTED TO SERVE. This past snowy, cold Saturday a group from Rock Church gathered and put these words from the Book of Acts and these first two core convictions into action by hitting the streets in downtown Haverhill and giving out hats, gloves, scarves, socks and, yes, even underwear. When we couldn't find people to give them to, we tagged and bagged them for those who may need them later. Our bags clipped to the big tree downtown in front of the bus station even made it onto the "You Know You're From Haverhill When" FaceBook page! It was super cold, but we had an incredible time meeting great people and praying over our community.
Another place where our church is able to really come alive is in LifeGroups and I am especially grateful for the time I've been able to share recently in our Amesbury 9am breakfast LifeGroup. LifeGroups are a place where we can put our third core conviction, that EVERYONE IS MEANT TO GROW to work. When you have a group of people around you who are honest, real and ready to support you no matter where you're been or what you're going through, it can be absolutely life-changing. If you've never had the opportunity to join us downstairs on Sunday mornings, you really should try it out! The only qualification is that you are ready to experience a great breakfast with great people. Beyond that, there's the opportunity to really be a part of a more intimate time of doing life together in the way God intended us to in the church. If 9am just seems too stinkin' early for you, I totally get it and you can join us at 10:10 upstairs for service. But we have plenty of other LifeGroups for you to join in. Take a look at the list at http://www.rock-church.org/lifegroups-1 and make a fresh start this year by getting involved!
Also, I just want to remind everyone that our Amesbury ministry leaders and volunteers thank you lunch will be held after service this Sunday, January 15th in our newly renovated downstairs space. If you have not yet received an invite from your ministry leader, or are not yet involved but interested in volunteering or learning more about our church, consider yourself invited! Please reply to the email you received, or just drop our ministry assistant Debra a quick email (email@example.com), and give us a shout that you're planning to come so we can get an idea of how best to set up. It's sure to be a great time of gathering, eating and dreaming of what is to come in 2017.
If you weren't able to be with us last week, I hope you'll join us this coming Sunday at LifeGroup at 9:00 or for service at 10:10 to discover how we can Reboot!
Until then, may all God's blessings go with you.