Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow...NOT!!!!
When you consider how unseasonably warm it is right now, it is hard to imagine that just 2 weeks ago many of us were snowed in at home. Everything, though, is back to normal in our parish life.
This coming Sunday is already the Third Sunday after Epiphany, which is the day we hear the story of the Wedding at Cana. That wedding event, when Christ performed his first miracle, gives us an opportunity to reflect on an aspect of our Savior’s character that we don’t really hear much about: the joy that shone from him! How else could he have cobbled together such a diverse group of disciples that included fishermen and tax collectors? These are not people who would have been attracted to a “doom and gloom” personality. The Letter to the Hebrews gives us concrete insight into how our Savior viewed his ministry: “Looking unto Jesus…who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God (12:2).” And what is that joy? The joy of Heaven of course!
I’d like to share a passage from a book with you. This is from Jesus, Man of Joy by Sherwood Wirt (1999). I think it is an incredible insight into our Savior at the time of the Wedding at Cana of Galilee.
“It is a lovely occasion and everyone is smiling. Excitement fills the air. The ceremony is being held outdoors in the sunshine. The presence of Jesus lends a sudden touch of glory to the proceedings. Can you imagine anything more thrilling than just being there? Why do you suppose Jesus was invited to this event? Was it because He wore a sad expression? No. What a misreading of His real character!... He exhibited a light and serene spirit. He radiated cheer. According to the letter to the Hebrews, He was anointed by His Father with the oil of gladness more than His companions. That's why Jesus was invited to the wedding. Not because He was a relative they had to invite. Not because He was an apostle of doom and gloom. Not because He was sure to go about gratuitously buttonholing the other guests and informing them that the fires of hell awaited them.”
What Wirt is getting at is that Jesus was invited because He was a Man of Joy! Would that all of us could be so described! I think it behooves us all to take seriously this aspect of our Savior’s character and incorporate it into our own lives so that we might be as much like Him as possible.
Our Ministry Fair last week was a great success. We had an excellent opportunity to see the myriad of ways we reach out to impact each other and our wider community for the Gospel. Also, many of you signed up the assist in this ongoing work of our parish. Way to go! I have to say thanks to Cynthia Hensley for coordinating this unique event.
This past Monday, the vestry approved fixing two safety issues which have confronted us. One is the installation of a railing leading up to the side door of the church. We expect the new railing to be in place some time this coming week. Also, the concrete walkway leading to our front door has lifted up at the joint just before the awning. This will be repaired this coming week also. Please take great care this weekend when you come into and leave the church. We have the problem marked with tape and traffic cones so you can see where the issue is.
At the bottom of this blog is a picture representation of the 10th Chapter of the Book of Revelation. If you are not in our Bible Study class on Wednesday nights (or you missed it), read Chapter 10 and see if you can find the scriptural references in the picture.
All of our announcements are below and our parish prayer lists are to the left. Our activities really begin to pick up again in just a couple weeks as we prepare for the beginning of Lent in March. So read on and see what is on tap in the upcoming weeks.
Annual Giving Statements
· Your annual giving statements are available by the front door.
Adult Sunday School
· Adult Sunday School resumes tomorrow, January 22 at 9:45 a.m.
First Friday Kids
· The young people of the parish will gather together on Friday, February 3, at 6:30 p.m. here at the church.
· Our next Men’s Breakfast will be on Saturday, February 4, 8:30 a.m. at the Mills River Restaurant.
Ladies of All Saints Meeting & Luncheon
· The Ladies will next meet on February 18 at 11:00 a.m. for a meeting and luncheon. Remember, if you are a woman, you are automatically a member of this most active ministry!
· The altar guild will meet on February 18 at 9:30 a.m.
Flower & Sanctuary Candle Charts
· New charts are available on the bulletin board for the giving of flowers and sanctuary candles for 2017. The suggested donation for flowers is $50.00 and it is $10.00 for the sanctuary candle. Sign up today to be sure you are able to get your desired day.
Lenten Quiet Day
· We will host a Lenten Quiet Day for our deanery on March 18 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Mark your calendars now. Details will be forthcoming.
Lenten Fish Fry
· We have had many requests for the date of our Lenten Fish Fry. It will be held March 24 from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Tickets will be available in February. Remember, you can always check the online calendar on our website for event dates.
Tuesday Book Study
· Our Tuesday Book Study is continuing with the study of Mere Christianity.
· Bible Study this week is Chapter 11 in the Book of Revelation.
· Interfaith Assistance Ministry here in Henderson County is this month’s recipient of our in-gathering of food stuffs.