RECAP: OUR BLESSED HOPE based on 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
Hope is extremely important. We all face seasons in our lives that are extremely difficult. Sometimes, those trying times are so overwhelming, we feel like quitting or throwing in the towel. We grow discouraged, feel defeated, and become disheartened. But when we have hope, even in the darkest of times, we have something to cling to our hold on to. Just like the rebels in Star Wars did not have much in the way of success at first, they had hope–and that small hope was what eventually brought on the victory.
The church at Thessalonica endured a very difficult season. It was a church that was beginning to waiver in its faith, believing things were hopeless. What was more, they grew discouraged as they began to pass away. They grew fearful that something was wrong with them, or that they were cursed because they had not yet witnessed the coming of Jesus. Paul wrote to this church to keep going, to not lose heart, and to cling to a blessed hope. What is this blessed hope? And what should we cling to?
- Jesus will come again. Jesus said he would return in Matthew 24 & 25. His return will be according to the Word of the Lord. If he said it, it will be, for God’s return never returns empty (Isa 55). But only those who are prepared and ready for it will see it. We need to be listening, prepared for his return, and living in a way that shows our watchfulness (Matt 25).
- The dead will rise. Because of Jesus’ resurrection, we have hope for resurrection. This was huge for Thessalonica, who believed that once someone entered the realm of Hades, they never escaped. But Jesus conquered death (Hades), hell (Gehenna), and the grave (Sheol). And because he lives, we don’t have to live in fear of death. For if we are in Christ when we pass the portals of this life, we will enter eternal life.
- The living will be raptured. A day will come when Jesus comes for his saints. If we are living for Christ, we will meet him in the air. Avoid the trap of compromise!
This is the blessed hope we can all cling to. We don’t have to grieve like we have no hope or live full of regret if we have Jesus. We can have the assurance of heaven if Jesus is our Savior, for those who call upon his name and repent of their sins will be saved. But if Jesus is our Lord, and we daily walk with him, we will have the blessed assurance of the day we will see Jesus. No matter what we face, Jesus is in us, and that gives us all the hope we need!
Questions for Reflection
1) Are you facing discouragement or defeat today? Have you taken it to the Lord?
2) Does your life reflect your belief in Christ?
3) If Jesus returns today, would you be ready? If not, what adjustments to your living do you need to make?
4) In what areas do you face the temptation to compromise?
This Sunday, Pastor Ryan will start the study in the discipline of guidance with the sermon titled, “Divine Guidance”, based on James 4:1-10. How can we receive good guidance from the Lord? And what gets in our way of receiving good guidance? Come or tune in Sunday to find out!
Daily Bible Readings for May 2 – 8
May 2: Ephesians 3:14-21 What was Paul’s prayer and celebration?
May 3: Philippians 4:4-20 Why did Paul rejoice?
May 4: Colossians 1:15-23 What caused Paul to celebrate?
May 5: 1 Peter 1:3-12 What caused Peter to celebrate?
May 6: Revelation 19:1-10 What is the song of celebration in heaven?
May 7: Genesis 16 What guidance did God provide Hagar? Did she listen?
May 8: Genesis 19:1-29 What guidance did God provide Lot and his family? Did they listen?
This Week’s Events:
Wednesday, May 3–Christian Education Team @ 8:15 pm
Sunday, May 7–First Sunday Breakfast & First Sunday Offering — Samaritan’s Purse
Monday, May 8–Bible Study @ 7 pm
Wednesday, May 10–Ministry Team @ 7 pm
Saturday, May 13–Mother/Daughter Banquet @ 5 pm
Sunday, May 28–Instachoir Picnic @ 5 pm
Sunday, June 4–New Bible Study begins
Sunday, June 18–Graduation Recognition Sunday
Sunday, June 25–Outdoor Worship
Sunday, June 25–Summer Vespers @ 6 pm
Celebration– Spiritual Discipline Challenge
Celebration is very important for our spiritual health. This week, write out all of the things you feel are wrong with the world. Then, name them one by one, and declare that Jesus is the answer and has given the victory. Then, celebrate the promised return of Jesus!
Mother Daughter Banquet
The Mother-Daughter Banquet will take place on Saturday, May 13 at 5 pm. Food will be provided by Men’s Fellowship. Perform from the InMotion School of Dance will be the evening entertainment. If you would like to attend, please contact the office for a head count so enough food can be provided.
Also, if you are a gentleman in the church and would like to help with the serving of the meal to honor the ladies, please contact the office or inform Bill Wood, Joe LaPrade, or Pastor Ryan.
We will be honoring our graduates on Sunday, June 18. If you have a graduate, please contact the church office so we can make sure they are recognized and honored. We are aware of six graduates already.
If you are a newer attendee at Beaver Creek, please call the office or leave in the offering plate your birth date so we do not miss anyone!
Call for Worship Leaders and Children’s Story
We are in need of both worship leaders and children’s storytellers. If you would like to serve, contact Alice Over (worship leading) or Phyllis Simmons (children’s story).
Extraordinary Women’s Conference
This is an opportunity for the ladies of the church. The Extraordinary Women’s Conference returns to Lynchburg this year on October 13-14! Some of the speakers include Tim Tebow, Mandisa, Julie Clinton, Hannah Keeley, and others, with a concert from Big Daddy Weave and worship led by Michael O’Brien. The cost is $64 for basic and $84 for gold as long as you register by March 31. The Fidelis class really would like to see if we can get a group of women together to go. If you are interested, please contact the church office. If there is a large enough group, there can potentially be a discounted group rate.
New Bible Study!
During the Summer months of June, July, and August, we will be doing a new study based on Jennie Allen’s book “Get Out of Your Head.” Do you want to recognize the toxic spirals in your life that leave you feeling far away from God? Do you want to be equipped in how to win the battle in your mind and draw closer to Christ? Then this short study will be good for you!
We are still working on the details as far as time. If you are interested in possibly joining this study, please either call the office, or let Lynne Lent or Bill Wood know so we have an idea of how many books to order. Child care will be provided.
Call to Prayer
Let us continue to pray for our nation in the following ways:
1) National return to God
2) Repentance of personal sin
3) Repentance of corporate sin
4) Healing for the brokenness of relationships
5) Our leaders
7) Guidance for our congregation in the days ahead
What do you want to see at Beaver Creek? What are some ideas you have for the long-term growth of our congregation? Any outrageous outreach ideas? Please either email Pastor Ryan or write them down and place them in the brown suggestion box in the narthex. Dream big!
The Christian Education Team is looking for six to eight volunteers for the nursery during the Sunday School hour and church hour. There will be a signup sheet in the back. If you would be willing to volunteer to allow our families to be able to participate in worship, please let one of the members of Christian Education know (Theresa Eckard, Scott McAvoy, Becky Whitmore), or sign up on the signup sheet!
Children’s Church & Meeting
The Christian Education team would like to relaunch children’s church for our kids, as well as for the kids in our community without a church home. To be successful, we need six to eight volunteers who would be willing to give up one Sunday either a month or every other month to minister to our children. If you are interested, please let one of Christian Education know, email the church office, or sign up on the sign-up sheet on Sunday.
The hope is that as we build our children’s ministry, more young families will want to participate in the church.
There will be a meeting after church for interested volunteers on Sunday, May 21. This will be an opportunity to share thoughts and ideas, as well as to hear from the Christian Education Team the hope for children’s church.
Sight & Sound Interest
The Fidelis class is looking at sponsoring a church-wide trip to Sight & Sound in 2024. But before the class can investigate bus prices and total cost, we want to gauge the true interest in the church. If you are interested and would like to be considered for this one-day event next year, please contact the office or let Pastor Ryan know in the next few weeks.
Graduation Party Invitation
On Saturday, May 27 we will celebrate Samantha Cooper’s graduation from high school. The whole church is invited! The party will take place from 11 am – 2 pm in the Fellowship Hall. Please RSVP to Pastor Ryan for food purposes.
Four Ways to Give!
1) Mail your tithe into the church office
2) Drop it by the church office on Tuesday, Thursday or Friday, 9 am – 1 pm
3) Our online giving platform: https://beavercreekchurchva.churchcenter.com/giving
4) Drop off in the offering plate on Sunday!
Continue to Keep in Prayer our members in Skilled Care Facilities: Mary G Miller, Shirley Miller & Carolyn Wine
Eddie Baker (health)
Terri Burkholder (health)
Deanne Dastoli (health)
Patsy Dastoli (health)
Elijah Tucker Dean (health)
Natalie Dodge (health)
John Fix (addiction)
Cindy Heatwole (health)
Bob Hess (health)
Tori Jackson (peace)
Darlene LaPrade (health)
Lynne Lent (health)
Alma Long (health & recovery)
Mark Martin (health)
Barbara Meadows (health)
Betty Miller (health)
Norlen Miller (health)
Mary G Miller (health)
Mary M Miller (health)
Savannah Miller (health)
Tami Plaugher (health)
Ann Simmons (health)
Crystal Smith (health)
Whitmore family (house)
Mary Whitmore (health)
Jeff? Wilbur (health)
Cindy Wittig (recovery)
Shelvy Wittig (health)
Joyce Wright (health)
Pastor Ryan Cooper
Beaver Creek Church