1-19-20

Family Sunday Potluck: January 26
Our first Family Sunday Potluck of the year will be on Sunday, January 26th, immediately after the service. Please visit the Info Table to sign up to bring a dish.

Winter Life Groups: January – March
Do you want to join a weekly Life Group? Please visit the Info Table for more information.

Faith and Finances Class: January 26 – April
Learn how God wants to restore health to your money and relationships through Faith and Finances, an eleven-week course that will be held on Sundays afternoons at the Family Center, beginning January 26th. The class costs $20/person. Please register by Sunday, January 19th by contacting Dave or Shari.

Meet the Pastor: February 2
If you are new to FOL and want to learn more about our church, please join us in the cafeteria after the service on February 2nd for a reception with Pastor John.

M3ND Abuse & Bullying Recognition Training: February 27
FOL and Stephens Middle School are hosting an abuse & bullying recognition/response training from The M3ND Project on the evening of Thursday, February 27th from 6:30 – 8:00 pm. Parents and any interested adults are invited to this event. The training will define and teach ways to identify the hidden manipulative behaviors that are found in all abuse cases. Participants will also obtain tools for responding in a way that promotes healing for victims and accountability for abusers. Register online using this link: http://bit.ly/2tKEmIs or visit the Info Table for a printed registration.

1-12-20

Winter Life Groups: January – March
Life Groups start this week. Please visit the Info Table for more information or to sign up for a Life Group.

Prayer Workshop: January 18
The Prayer Team invites everyone to start the year hearing from Jesus. Come and practice hearing from the Holy Spirit on Saturday, January 18th from 10:00 am – 12:00 pm at the Family Center.

Winter Members Meeting: January 19
FOL members, join us for our annual winter meeting before the service at 9:00 am on Sunday, January 19th in the cafeteria.

Faith and Finances Class: January 26 – April
Learn how God wants to restore health to your money and relationships through Faith and Finances, an eleven-week course that will be held on Sundays afternoons at the Family Center, beginning January 26th. The class costs $20/person. Please register by Sunday, January 19th by contacting Dave or Shari.

M3ND Abuse & Bullying Recognition Training: February 27
FOL and Stephens Middle School are hosting an abuse & bullying recognition/response training from The M3ND Project on the evening of Thursday, February 27th from 6:30 – 8:00 pm. Parents and any interested adults are invited to this event. The training will define and teach ways to identify the hidden manipulative behaviors that are found in all abuse cases. Participants will also obtain tools for responding in a way that promotes healing for victims and accountability for abusers. Register online using this link: http://bit.ly/2tKEmIs or visit the Info Table for a printed registration.

Youth Weekly Events
High school youth meet on Wednesday evenings. Middle school youth meet on Friday evenings.

1-5-20

Winter Life Groups: January – March
Life Groups will reconvene next week, January 14. Please visit the Info Table for more information or to sign up for a Life Group.

Faith and Finances Class: January 26 – April
Are you tired of stressing about money? Learn how God wants to restore
health to your money and relationships through Faith and Finances, an eleven-week course that will be help on Sunday afternoons at the Family Center. Contact David Uyematsu for more information.

The Well Day of Sabbath: February 29
Save the date: The Well will host a day of Sabbath on Saturday, February 29th in Long Beach. More details to follow. Contact Sylvia Palomino with any questions.

Youth Weekly Events
The middle and high school youth groups are on break and will reconvene in two weeks.

12-15-19

Christmas Cookie Bar: Today

Please join us for a Christmas cookie bar in the cafeteria after today’s service! 

5000 Pies Christmas Cookies & Pies: December

5000 Pies is taking Christmas pie orders until Friday, December 20th. Pick up will be Tuesday, December 24th from 1pm – 5pm.

Looking for gifts for coworkers, friends, or teachers? Look no further than 5000 Pies’ assorted Christmas cookie boxes and bags.

Order forms for pies and cookies will be at the Info Table after service.

M3ND Abuse & Bullying Training: February 27

FOL is partnering with Stephens Middle School to host an abuse & bullying training from The M3ND Project on the evening of Wednesday, February 27th, 2020 (exact time TBA). This training includes teaching, video learning and interactive breakout sessions to provide deeper knowledge of the various forms of abuse, including bullying, that first responders (e.g., faith-based leaders, therapists, school personnel) are likely to encounter. Parents and any interested adults are invited to this event. The training primarily focuses on defining and learning to identify covert emotional abuse, the hidden manipulative behaviors that are the common thread found in all abuse cases. Participants will also obtain tools for responding in a way that promotes healing for victims and accountability for abusers. 

Youth Announcements

The middle and high school youth groups are on break for Christmas and will reconvene in January.

What We’re Waiting For

What We’re Waiting For
by Pastor Dan Palomino

Hope and Peace go hand in hand. That’s what Advent is all about. And oh, how we need both as we wait on the Lord! Two other elements that fit right in here are Faith and Love. Jesus came into this world to bring us hope and peace, and that we might know his love through faith in him.

Luke announces the peace that Jesus brings by quoting the messenger, the angel of the Lord: “‘For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord’…And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!’” (Luke 2:11-14)

But how can we have hope when things don’t go the way we had thought they would? How can we have hope when we are disappointed in God, when we feel like he has let us down, or when things happen in life that we don’t understand?

Jesus himself answers these questions by telling us that our ultimate hope does not come in this lifetime but in what is to come. “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 14:33)

He came that we might have peace. How can we have peace in the midst of the tribulation? The same way Jesus could sleep soundly in the back of the boat while the storm raged on. Because Jesus is still with us, God is with us. That’s what we read in scripture and sing about, especially at Christmastime. Maybe that’s a problem. We tend to reflect upon the name, Emmanuel (which is a promise that means “God is with us”), mainly at this time of year. Yes, the promise is there that God is with us in the Christ child, but we have to remember that God is always with us. That’s why Jesus gave us his Holy Spirit. “Very God of very God” dwells within every person who puts their trust in him.

That’s how we can face tribulation, that’s how we can endure the storm. This is how we can have hope when we’re faced with illness, joblessness, injustice, oppression, broken relationships, hatred, loss, or even death. Peace gives us hope. Hope enables us to be at peace. God is ALWAYS with us and not just when he was here physically roaming the earth as a carpenter’s son. The very name given to him was a sign to us that God IS (not was) with us!

Jesus tells his disciples (and us), “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” (John 14:27) He tells us this right after he promises the Holy Spirit to each and every believer.

This is how we know that he loves us and how we can know his love for us. “For God so loved the world” —that is, God loved the world in such a way— “that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.” For Jesus did not come into the world to condemn the world but to save it. (John 3:16-17)

We can experience the “Peace that surpasses all understanding” (Philippians 4:7) in the midst of life’s difficulties because of the hope we have in what is to come, eternal life, when we will no longer have to face any kind of tribulation. Faith and hope go hand in hand, as well. (See Hebrews 11:1.)

The peace that Jesus promised us so long ago is not a peace that is to come, it is for now, in the midst of the tribulation that he told us we will face in this world, in this life. But there will come a time when we will no longer need faith and hope because we will be right there with the LORD, face to face, gazing upon him in all his fullness. For now, though, we need faith, hope and peace because we can only see God as in a dimly lit mirror. (1 Corinthians 13:12)

For now, we have faith, hope (peace) and love because of the birth of Jesus into the human family and the work he accomplished on the cross for which he was born. That waiting is over. The waiting we endure now is for his return. The greatest of these three (faith, hope and love) is love. Why?

Because love lasts forever, it goes on into eternity. (1 Corinthians 13:8) In the eternal realm, we will no longer need faith and hope (or peace) because our faith and hope will have come to fruition. We will revel in the glory of the perfect and everlasting love of God!

It’s worth the wait.