Karibu (Welcome in Swahili)! O give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good! I am excited God has blessed us to enter into 2016. This entrance is God’s sign that God still has work for us to do, as well as God’s continuing to exhibit grace and mercy in our lives. In response to God’s loving kindness and tender mercies, we offer God our sincere worship and uninhibited praise. I invite you to share in our life-changing engagement as practicing Christians, which is on the front of this bulletin. Being a disciple of Jesus Christ is our first priority. In this, we strive to make Jesus’ words applicable to our lives, while showing the face of Jesus to everyone we meet. We also do this by continuing to fight for the least cared for, while continuing to unapologetically declare a war on educational disparities, hunger, mass incarceration, homelessness, food deserts, etc. The local church must lead the charge in helping change the lives of all people, and you are welcomed to join us in this fight.
If you are a first time or repeat visitor, I want to take this written moment to greet you. As family we have not met before, or have met in times past, we invite you to join us on this spiritual journey of connectivity. In an effort to meet a variety of worship needs, we offer two worship services. Our 8:00 a.m. Worship and Word (1st and 3rd Sundays only) is a non-traditional worship service. Our 10:45 a.m. Sunday Morning Glory Worship is a blending of traditional and contemporary worship. In addition, we invite you to join us every Wednesday at 7 p.m. for Wednesday in the Word with yours truly. Lastly, if you are without a place to call home, we would love to be your church family of faith, and I would LOVE to serve as your Pastor! Shalom.
Dr. L. Bernard Jakes
Locked In, But Not Locked Out
Walter Mathews, CI,CT,IL-Master
Acts 16:16-26 (NIV)
16 Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a female slave who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling. 17 She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” 18 She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so annoyed that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her. 19 When her owners realized that their hope of making money was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to face the authorities. 20 They brought them before the magistrates and said, “These men are Jews, and are throwing our city into an uproar 21 by advocating customs unlawful for us Romans to accept or practice.” 22 The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten with rods. 23 After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. 24 When he received these orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks. 25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. 26 Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose.
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