Hilltop Chapel Newsletter

 
HILLTOP  CHAPEL  NEWSLETTER
JANUARY 2018

 

“IN THE BEGINNING”

      As we look at a brand new year and all the promise it holds, I thought it might be instructive for us to consider what God has to say about the beginning. I’m sure, with all the turmoil that accompanied the start of 2017, you’re all ready for a more peaceful entry into 2018.
  The Bible gives us two very distinct views of the creation period and yet, they meld so beautifully into one. So, let’s take it from the top and consider the Source of all things, here on this planet and throughout the universe. The very first words are: “In the beginning, God…” The sovereign God of the universe is the clear and overwhelming star of the show and His divine nature pervades every “nook and cranny” of history (His story).
     We’re given an amazing overview of the way He envisioned his creation and the meticulous planning involved in each step of the process. From the introduction of light, the division of light and darkness, the names He gave to each—Day & Night—to the creation of man & woman, there were no missteps, no do overs. He carried it all out with absolute perfection!
    With the introduction of mankind, we have get a glimpse of God’s purpose for creating all this splendor in the first place. Deep within, for reasons known only to Himself, our Heavenly Father wanted then and continues to desire an intimate, personal relationship with each one of us. He created man in His own image (Genesis 1:26-27). In vs. 28, we read: “Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” God gave everything to His newly formed, innocent, man and woman. And, He gave them authority over the entirety of all that He’d just created. You can see how much He wanted all of this to work.
    Then, in short order—whatever that means in terms of eternity—sin entered the scene and all of God’s wonderful work became tainted. Not a single thing within the created host escaped the curse of sin! Because of man’s willful disobedience to the command of God it all went “haywire”. You may ask yourself, as I have many times, why didn’t God disallow sin into the equation in the first place. After much consideration, I’m of the opinion that God had to show us the ruinous nature of sin so that we might appreciate what He had to do to save us from it’s devastating effects.
   Within the beginning of creation there is the larger story that directly impacts each of our lives, today. That story is the real, enduring and ongoing revelation of the One without Whom nothing in the beginning would have been possible. In John 1:1-4, we read: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God. ‘He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him, nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.” And this is the key to all that we’ve seen so far; He is life! Life then, life now and life eternally. Without Him there is no hope!
    Paul tells is, in 1 Corinthians 15:19, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.” In other words, if you’re clinging to Jesus and He’s not the “real deal”, you’re just wasting your time. You may as well give up right now and live life any way you please. But, in the very next verse, we get the rebuttal: “But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the first-fruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since by man (Adam) came death, by Man (Christ) also came the resurrection from the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive.” (1 Corinthians 15:20-22). 
     Isn’t it wonderful to consider the awesome truth that, from the very beginning of the world, God accounted for you and me and made the perfect and only way for us to spend eternity with Him? We may not understand it all, but we do know that the very first Bible verse many of us learned as children, is still as true today as it was back then: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16).
       This is a month of new beginnings! Let’s remember—“In the beginning, God!!!                                  
                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Pastor Rod







In January, it was good to see many of our regular congregation back at church after weeks of illness with the flu symptoms, aching, cold, cough, etc.  WELCOME BACK!  ...  Hope all of you reading this are healthy, happy and safe.  The forecast in our local area is for very warm and dry weather for the next couple of weeks.  We are truly blessed, but could use some rain at some point ...  Due to illness and the weather, a smaller number of Helping Hands ladies met later in January at church on the 16th for their business meeting and elections.  They enjoyed their Bible Study and monthly potluck luncheon with Gail McClard as hostess.  Congratulations to the new and returning officers:  President -- Laura Gia, Vice President -- Marcia Wilcher, Recording Secretary -- Donna Stieber, and Treasurer -- Donna Symons.  Many thanks to the former officers for their excellent and devoted service ...  Helping Hands will meet at 11 a.m. this coming Tuesday, February 6th, in the Social Hall at Hilltop Chapel for Bible Study, a potluck lunch, and a business meeting.  All ladies are welcome to attend.  Bring a dish if you like and hope to see you there ... The members of Hilltop Chapel met for their Annual Church Meeting and Elections on January 28th and, with 60 members on the roster, we were able to gather a quorum and conduct the meeting and elections.  Congratulations to our new and returning official board members:  Deacon (3-year term) -- Russell Crose, Deaconess (2-year term) -- Bonnie Lamar, Trustee (3-year term) -- Mike Gage, Treasurer -- Terri Brown (1-year term), Christian Ed Supt. -- Lesley Davison (1-year term), Asst. Christian Ed. Supt. -- Kaysia Barr (1-year term), Missions Supt. -- Linda Riffel (1-year term), Asst. Missions Supt. -- Donna Symons (1-year term), and Recorder -- Debin Crose (1-year term).  Our church extends a grateful thank you to all the former board members who have served our church tirelessly and faithfully ...  Our church still has two openings for volunteers to provide snacks on two Sunday mornings.  Please see Kaysia Barr if interested ...  The weekly Children's Church has been successfully presenting the Gospel message and Bible stories to our local children in grades 1 through 5 on Sunday mornings during the regularly scheduled Sunday Service.  Thanks to the adult volunteers and leadership of the Brunos and the Lovewells, 27 children have benefitted from this very important ministry that we all hope to see continue well into the future.  Our children will be leaders some day and we shape tomorrow's world by what we teach our children today ...  The men from our local communities met on January 20th for their monthly Men's Breakfast and Fellowship, and shared a great meal, their thoughts and faith.  Hey guys, mark your calendar for February 17th and join the others for a delicious breakfast, devotion and wholesome fellowship ...  Remember, when you can't forgive someone, pray for them.  It may or may not change them, but it will always change you ...  The Teen Mountain Ministry will be meeting for their annual planning meeting on Saturday, February 3rd.  The plans for the new year sound exciting and the local youth are encouraged to attend and share ideas ...  Have you heard the one about the golfer who gave up trying to shoot his age on the course?  Now he's aiming for his area code ...   Be sure to wish Pastor Rod a very special Happy Birthday on February 7th.   Happy Valentines Day to all.  


January 2018 Newsletter 
DID YOU KNOW… ?

The ladies of Helping hands met for our monthly meeting on the 5th of December at the home of Yasmin Garrett in beautiful downtown Badger for a Bible study, potluck lunch and business meeting, with Pastor Rod leading us all in a melodious chorus of Christmas carols accompanied by his guitar … The Hilltop Chapel Official Board Christmas Dinner was held at Twin Valleys in the 7th of December, with everyone who attended having a great time visiting, catching up, and exchanging stories, and of course sharing an enjoyable meal together. A wonderful fellowship of Christian brothers and sisters … The Hilltop Chapel Youth Group held a benefit bake sale in the Social Hall on the 10th, to the delight of many who attended and purchased the yummy sweet treats. Many thanks to all who helped make this event a success … Our congratulations and grateful appreciation to Pastor Rod for pastoring here at Hilltop Chapel for the past 22 years, since 1995, as of December 17, 2017. He shall stand and shepherd his flock, in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God. – Micah 5:4 … The youth’s AWANA Club met in December for a “Birthday for Jesus” … The Hilltop Chapel Christmas Party and Ornament Exchange was a great success, and many of us now have new prayer partners for 2018. We are grateful to all who participated and brought goodies to munch on. If you missed this month’s festivities – plan to join us next year … Those brave and hardy souls with good, strong voices all gathered at church one evening to go out amongst the neighbors to spread good cheer with Christmas caroling. They were often welcomed with claps and cheers, and hot chocolate and treats. A wonderful annual celebration ... The men of the church met on the 16th for Men’s Breakfast and Fellowship. This monthly event was well attended and enjoyed by all, a great time to gather and share your faith and fellowship … Christmas is the heart of God revealed, the grace of God provided, and the peace of God received … The Christmas Eve Sunday morning Worship Service was well attended, a very special time to celebrate the birth of our Savior. We hope you all were able to have joyful gatherings with your family and friends all around and singing carols to inspire you with their old familiar sound ... Unfortunately, due to a rampant flu epidemic in our area, our New Year’s Eve Sunday morning Worship Service and evening Candlelight Service were both cancelled, allowing everyone to stay home, keep warm, and feel better … Life isn’t about finding yourself – it’s about discovering who God created you to be … As long as there are algebra and geometry tests, there will be prayer in school … Now that the holidays are behind us, we offer you a worthy mission project that can be donated to year-round. The St. Jude’s Ranch for Children’s Recycled Card Program accepts new and used, all-occasion greeting cards all year, including general and religious Christmas cards, Easter cards, sympathy cards, Thanksgiving cards, and all-occasion blank greeting cards. The children recycle them into beautiful ‘new’ greeting cards, and sell them in packets of 10 for $17.00 to support the programs and services for abused, neglected and homeless children, young adults and families. These cards be purchased by calling 877/977-7572. To donate cards, mail donations to: St. Jude’s Ranch for Children, Recycled Card Program, 100 St. Jude’s Street, Boulder City, NV 89005. More details can be obtained at their web site: stjudesranch.org/about-us/recycled-card-program. Have a Happy and Healthy New Year.

    

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Thoughts and words from Pastor Rod Davison
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