"LIVING GOD'S WORD IN TODAY'S WORLD"
SPRING RUMMAGE/BAKE SALE
FRIDAY, APRIL 26TH AND 27TH
We have added a “Food Blessing Box” to our landscape and ministry for those in need to be able to grab non-perishable food items for a meal or two. Feel free to take advantage of these items. We also need non-perishable food items to replenish the box when needed. Please bring your items to church or add your items to the box. May ALL who give and receive be blessed!
Letter from the Pastor
January 30, 2024
“Then the word of the LORD came to Jonah the second time.” This is how the third chapter of the Book of Jonah begins and I haven’t been able to get these words out of my mind the last couple of weeks. I love the story of Jonah, how God called, Jonah ran, the storm raged, Jonah got thrown overboard, and God caused a big fish to swallow a wayward prophet.
God gave Jonah a job to do and when Jonah didn’t do it, God didn’t give up on him. God worked with his mighty power to bring Jonah to his senses. How often have we tried to go our own way when we knew God wanted something from us? It’s easy for us to think we can run away from God, but Jonah forgot that there is no place he could go where God would not be and we sometimes forget that, too. That brings me right back to the first line of chapter three, “Then the word of the LORD came to Jonah the second time.”
Our God is a God of second chances. Isn’t that amazing? Isn’t that a great relief? It is for me. There is no doubt that I mess up more often than I get things right. I need those second chances, or as we called them as kids, I need those “do-overs.” I need that gift of grace, and God pours it out over me in abundance. I bet he does the same for you.
Have you ever stopped to think about how big a gift grace is? There isn’t a box or a gift bag that would hold it, there is no price we could pay to own it, it’s not possible to borrow it, and it’s too secure to steal it. It is a gift that we can only receive. Ephesians 2:8 says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.” All we have to do to open the gift of grace is to believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God who came to die for our sins so we would never have to. Faith in Jesus is our second chance at life.
It took a storm and a big fish for Jonah to come to his senses and realize God’s way is the best way. Sometimes it takes extreme measures for us to come to our senses; what did it take for you? Did you decide you wanted to follow God’s way as a sudden inspiration, a gradual recognition, or in a desperate situation? The impetus isn’t as important as the decision you made to accept the gift. God makes the offer in whatever way necessary to get our attention and then leaves it up to us to say “yes.” And when we don’t say “yes” the first time, God gives us a second chance. Or a third. Or a fourth. Isn’t God amazing?
That’s why I keep going back to Jonah’s story. That’s why I keep focusing on the first line in the third chapter, “Then the word of the LORD came to Jonah the second time.” That’s why I am so grateful to serve our God – a God of second chances who loves us enough to never give up on us. A God who loves us enough to give us a gift as precious and as valuable as the gift of grace that gives life. Isn’t God amazing?
Happy February and God Bless you all,
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Morning education classes
Classes for Pre K- Adults of all ages are meeting from, 9:30 am to 10:30 am.
Young ones (Birth - Pre-K) - the nursery
*Pre-K - 1st Grade - downstairs with Ms Connie
*2nd - 5th Grade - downstairs with Ms Roberta
6th - 8th Grade - downstairs with Ms Sabrina
9th - 12th Grade - downstairs with Mr Chris
Young Adult/College & Career - in the library
Russ Bowman's Class for adults - at Dunkin' Donuts
Alpha and Omega for adults -in the Fellowship Hall
Watch previous week's messAGES FROM pASTOR dONNA (AND OTHERS) ON OUR worship services PAGE OR ON OUR fACEBOOK PAGE (@ROOTSTOWNCHURCHofhope)
For more news, updates and info, check out our News page!
Habitat of portage county Apostles Build
Apostles Build Story: The project that was started in July 2019 has been completed! The Hummel-Tucker family were presented with their home on April 25th at 2 pm! Blessings to the family as they begin to move in and get comfortable! Thank you to all who helped, prayed for, donated to this project!