Dear Church Family and Community,
God created a world in which we were united in harmony and peace with God, creation, each other, and even ourselves. Sin introduced us to separation from God, creation, each other, and even who God designed us to be. The salvation that comes through the work of Jesus and faith in Him brings the redemption of our lost and broken shalom. As the Church, we are followers of Jesus, who submit to Him as Lord and live and love to usher in the kingdom of God.
Being the Body of Christ is one of the best gifts God has given us. It takes us back to the Garden, and calls us back to harmony, unity, and peace with God and each other. As the Body of Christ, we partner with God to steward creation, we are led by the Holy Spirit in equipping one another, and we hold on to Christ’s life and work as our witness and example of how to live to please God. Being the Body of Christ teaches us that we belong to God and each other.
One of the goals of our Rooted Series has been to help answer what it means to belong to God and each other here at HBIC. We feel that by sharing who we are and what we do while learning who you are and what God has called you to do, we can better continue on the work God has called us to as the Body of Christ here at HBIC. This week marks the last session in this first round of classes as Pastor Carmen teaches week four, Building God’s Kingdom, and invites class participants to live out their God-given purpose to serve others with their gifts.
I am also very excited for Baptism Sunday this week. It is such a blessing for us to now host our baptisms here at HBIC. We as a family and a community get to welcome sisters and brothers in the faith as they step forth in obedience to Christ’s command, in submission to the Spirit, and at the pleasure of God our Father. In baptism, these sisters and brothers testify outwardly of the work God has done in them and publicly make their lifelong commitment to follow God. Also, children (kindergarten through 5th grade) and youth will join us for the entirety of the service. This is one of my favorite Sundays of the year. I pray you can join us, and perhaps even invite someone who would be blessed by this service.
Last Sunday, we finished our Miracle: Making God Known series by learning about Jesus, God’s Provision for Us. In providing, God makes himself known to us; in Jesus, the Spirit leads us in seeing and knowing God more fully. Nicodemus once asked Jesus if change was really possible. Jesus told him and tells us that He is the Light of the world, sent from heaven to and for us. For God so loved the world, he saved it through Jesus. For god so loved us, he sent Jesus for us. If you missed hearing this message, please be sure to check it out here on our website, or through our sermon podcast on Soundcloud, Google Play, iTunes, or Stitcher.
I pray this finds you doing well, growing in the love and grace of God our Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ. May the Holy Spirit bless you and keep you, and continue to equip you to serve others and our world.
Love in Christ,
Pastor Hank (John 15:16-17)
P: (717) 561-2170, ext. 104