9/8/22 – The Bridge’s “Family Reunion”

Good morning,

During my teen years the summer was when my father would always give me some dreaded news – ‘The Hammons Family Reunion is this weekend, make sure you are there.”  My grandmother’s extended family got together every year for a family reunion, and her hope (maybe even expectation) was that all her children and grandchildren would attend.  When I was younger the reunion was held at the Refton Fire Hall and there were candy scrambles, guessing games, bingo, and a big softball game.  It was an all-afternoon and into-the-early-evening event.

To Grandma the family reunion was the highlight of the summer…to me it was a lost afternoon spent eating chicken and macaroni salad with people I didn’t really know.  In fact, during my senior year of high school I wrote a family reunion survival guide as an English project!  Still, my brother and I went, because it meant a lot to Grandma (and, to be honest, the food was really good…the Hammons family knew how to cook).

This week is our annual Church Corn Roast, which is a sort of like a family reunion.  God’s family (at least our local expression of it) will be gathering after the service at Lloyd and Mary Lois Kreider’s home for a time of food and fellowship.  And here at the Bridge we’ve got spiritual grandmas and grandpas, brothers and sisters, and lots of cousins.  We even have a goofy uncle or two!

Are church picnics found in Scripture?  Well, there isn’t a verse that says “And once a year ye shall gather together in the outdoors to eat the finest meats, cheeses, breads, fruits and vegetables.”  BUT check out these verses:

And they devoted themselves to the apostles teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.

Acts 2:42

And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts,

Acts 2:46

And let us consider how to stir one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

Matthew 5:6

And there you shall eat before the Lord your God, and you shall rejoice, you and your households, in all that you undertake, in which the Lord your God has blessed you.

Deuteronomy 12:7

God loves families.  He loves individual families and He loves church families.  He loves watching them connect with each other and enjoying fellowship over a meal.  He wants them to help each other, support each other, and care for each other.  Most especially, He wants them to reach the world for Christ.

I look forward to both our worship and our fellowship together on Sunday, and I’ll be missing my favorite Grandma Phillips dish – creamed onions!

Here’s what’s happening:

  1. Details on the Corn Roast – We will gather after the service at the home of Lloyd and Mary Kreider (15 Long Lane, Kirkwood).  We plan to eat at 12:15.  Corn and hot dogs (with all the fixings), drinks and paper supplies are provided. Please bring a large picnic food dish (finger food works nicely) and lawn chairs or blankets.  If you have a favorite outdoor game feel free to bring it as well!  Park in front of the barn or over at Kreider’s Market.
  2. We are excited to renew our Prayer Partner Program. ALL children are invited to fill out a questionnaire that tells a little general information about themselves. This information will be used to pair a kiddo up with a praying sponsor. The job of the sponsor is to pray daily for the assigned child and keep in touch in little ways. A note, a smile, and a general check-in are special ways to let the child know that you are covering them in prayer. The job of the child is to fill out the paper, return it to Elizabeth Barrett, and after they are assigned a sponsor to occasionally let them know what their needs are to be lifted up in prayer. If you would be interested in being a sponsor, or have questions, please contact Elizabeth Barrett. School age children will receive questionnaires in their gift bag today. Extra forms for the younger children will be on the back table. Please fill out and return at your earliest convenience.
  3. The Junior High Youth Drive-In Movie Night is set for Saturday night, 9/17 (Rain Date 9/24).  Movie starts at 7:45. The movie is free, and the youth will be selling concessions to raise money for Operation Christmas Child.
  4. On Saturday, October 8th the Junior High Youth are hosting a barn sale at the church.  A local barn needed cleaned out and it contained many tools and antiques.  Rather than have these items be destined for a dumpster, the youth will be selling them with the proceeds going to Operation Christmas Child.  A group will be gathering at the church THIS Saturday (9/10) at 12:30 pm to begin the process of sorting and prepping the items.  It’s some pretty cool stuff!  If you’d like to help, stop on by.
  5. I’ll be leading the upstairs adult Sunday School class once again this week. We will be studying Proverbs 3 and what Solomon has to say about worry and anxiety.

This Sunday we are beginning our fall sermon series on “Act 1” of the life of Moses.  I’ve titled this series “God’s First Deliverer” because Moses is an Old Testament precursor or forerunner of Jesus.  Moses and Jesus both delivered God’s people out of bondage and into freedom.  This week we will be studying Exodus 1 and seeing why the Israelites needed a deliverer in the first place.  Believe it or not, we have a lot in common with the Israelites!

I am REALLY looking forward to this series and this Sunday in particular.  If you know of someone who is struggling in life right now and/or hasn’t accepted Jesus as their Savior, this would be an awesome week to invite them to join you at the Bridge (and to join all of us for some food and fellowship at the Kreider’s)!

See you on Sunday,