Saturday, February 21, 2015

E-Note From Pastor Andy 2-21-15



February 21, 2015

Dear Eastridge Church,

Since I arrived in January 2011 to be the pastor here at Eastridge, I have been talking about discipleship.  I have been asking everyone the question, “Who are you discipling?”  I ask this question in response to the Great Commission that Jesus gave His disciples in Matthew 28:19-20…Go and Make Disciples.

My conviction is this: If we are genuine disciples of Jesus then we will be about the business of making disciples of Jesus.  The problem for many comes in this question: “How…How do you make a disciple?”  I think I am willing but I just don’t know how to do it.

The first step is to worship Jesus.  In the Matthew 28:17, the first thing the disciples of Jesus do when they see Him is to worship Him.  This is why we start the week off on Sunday morning by gathering together to worship.

The second step is once we have received His instructions (The Great Commission…Go and Make Disciples) we begin to go and pray about our “oikos.”  Who are the people in our “oikos” that God would like for us to bring before The Throne of Mercy in prayer?  We begin to pray for these people each day on our “oikos” list.  We pray that God would soften their hearts to receive the message of salvation and we pray that God would open doors for us to share the Good News with them.

The third step is to take some action to build a relationship with them.  I plan to talk specifics tomorrow morning and I want to challenge you to join me in putting into practice some habits from now until Easter. 

A few months ago we asked the question, “What is the Church?”  The answer I offered was this: The Church Is…The covenant community of God’s people, the Body of Christ, gathered by his invitation, hearing/applying his word, receiving his grace, scattered weekly to do his will.

Let’s be the church that God has called us to be!

Alabaster Offering
Alabaster offering will be received tomorrow morning on February 22nd.  Be sure to pick up an offering box if you have not already done so from the information table.

Valentines Banquet
Thanks to everyone who helped make the Valentines banquet a fun success!  The youth were able to raise over $300 from the banquet.  You may want to check out the photos that Ashley took on Sunday if you have not had a chance to do so on the Church Facebook page “Eastridge Nazarene Church”

Prayer
On Saturday morning at 9am Pastor Daniel leads a prayer meeting.  On Sunday morning at 8:30am Pastor Josh will lead a prayer meeting before the morning worship service.

Gaither Vocal Band
Central Community Church is having the Gaither Vocal Band in concert on Friday, April 10, 2015.  The Church is located at 6100 W. Maple we have more information on the information desk in the church entryway.

MNU Night at Worlds of Fun
MNU Night at Worlds of Fun is Friday, April 24th, 2015 from 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.  This event will once again be one of the many fun-filled activities of our MAX event.  Join in the great times of fellowship and support for MidAmerica Nazarene University to make it a wonderful 41st year!  By attending this year’s MNU Night at Worlds of Fun, you will not only have fun, but will help present and future students attend MNU.

Visit www.mnu.edu/worldsoffun to order your ticket online.  Online tickets are printed instantly from your home or office, so be sure to have a printer handy. No refunds or credit will be issued for unused online tickets.  Online tickets are $26.50 (plus tax) prior to Wednesday, April 4, and $30.00 (plus tax) after April 4


Pastor Andy

Friday, February 13, 2015

E-Note From Pastor Andy 2-13-15

February 13, 2015

Dear Eastridge Family,

Josh and I attended the M-15 Conference in Kansas City this week.  There were some excellent speakers and good information shared during the event.  Of course my favorite part was seeing some friends that I had not seen for several years.  I was able to see some pastors from Alaska; I had lunch with a good friend who pastors a church in Washington State on one day.  The next day I had lunch with another friend who pastors a church in North Dakota.  Before we left Kansas City we shared a meal with the twins and enjoyed spending some time with them.




We have a number of items that I want to make you aware of in this enote; however before I get into some of those items let me take a moment to talk about “Why You Are Here.”  Why did God create you and put you in the place you are?  There are many books out there designed to help people discover their purpose. About a year ago we did a study as a church on “The Purpose Driven Life.”  I love the way the author starts that book out with this line: “It’s not about you.  It is about God.”

You cannot discover the real reason God made you without having an authentic relationship with Christ.  In fact, you will never grasp the meaning of your life apart from an intimate relationship with Him.

You have been created by God and for God.  Therefore, a first step to discover what God wants you to do with your life is to understand that it’s not really your purpose you should be seeking; it’s God’s purpose for you. Anything less will leave you unfulfilled.
The first thing He wants to do is to reconcile the world to Himself through love (John 3:16).  Therefore, there is no way to find long-term fulfillment in something that is in opposition to—or even neutral to—that goal.  Entertaining, perhaps. Fulfilling, no.
Because His desire is for us to “make disciples,” then it’s logical that we will be more fulfilled when our lives support that effort—or another of God’s purposes.  This doesn’t mean that you have to be an evangelist.  However your natural skills and talents can be used—if even in an indirect way—to help accomplish God’s purposes in the world.

There are numerous ways God can use you right now, right where you are.  This is good news because everyone can experience fulfillment by leveraging their position in life to serve Him and help accomplish His purposes in the world.

Are you a teacher?  A banker?  A construction worker?  A web designer?  How can you use your current occupation to make disciples, love others, and demonstrate His grace?  When you begin to take even the smallest steps toward using your gifts and talents to fulfill His purposes in the world–if even in an indirect way–then you can know the fulfillment that comes from experiencing the real reason you are here.

Alabaster Offering
Alabaster offering will be received on February 22nd.  Be sure to pick up an offering box if you have not already done so from the information table.

Valentines Banquet
Money raised for this banquet will go towards the teens youth fund, and help them go on a mission trip this summer!

Blood Drive
On Saturday February 21st from 10:30am-2:30pm Westside Church of the Nazarene is having a blood drive in honor of their pastor’s wife who is battling leukemia.  If you are interested in donating blood you may contact Natalie Thomas at 469-4521 or cnthomas6@cox.net or David Young at 268-9057 for an appointment.  You will need your photo id when you give blood.

Gaither Vocal Band
Central Community Church is having the Gaither Vocal Band in concert on Friday, April 10, 2015.  The Church is located at 6100 W. Maple we have more information on the information desk in the church entryway.

MNU Night at Worlds of Fun
MNU Night at Worlds of Fun is Friday, April 24th, 2015 from 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.  This event will once again be one of the many fun-filled activities of our MAX event.  Join in the great times of fellowship and support for MidAmerica Nazarene University to make it a wonderful 41st year!  By attending this year’s MNU Night at Worlds of Fun, you will not only have fun, but will help present and future students attend MNU.
Visit www.mnu.edu/worldsoffun to order your ticket online.  Online tickets are printed instantly from your home or office, so be sure to have a printer handy. No refunds or credit will be issued for unused online tickets.  Online tickets are $26.50 (plus tax) prior to Wednesday, April 4, and $30.00 (plus tax) after April 4.

Favorite Quotes of the Week
We live, in fact, in a world starved for solitude, silence, and private: and therefore starved for meditation and true friendship. – C. S. Lewis

If you need something in addition to God to make you happy, that is your true King. – Timothy Keller

We can do more with 12 disciples than we can with 12,000 religious consumers. - Alan Hirsch

God creates out of nothing.  Wonderful you say.  Yes, to be sure, but he does what is still more wonderful: he makes saints out of sinners. - Soren Kierkegaard

To be too busy with God’s work to commune with God is the highway to backsliding. – E. M. Bounds


Thursday, January 22, 2015

E-Note From Pastor Andy 1-22-15

January 22, 2014

Dear Eastridge Family,

We have made some good progress at both the apartment and the Fellowship Hall this week.  My parents came on Monday and started work immediately.  We have had several come in and join them as they have been working on painting and cleaning those two areas.  This morning we sprayed some texture on the walls at the fellowship Hall and tomorrow morning we hope to get it painted.  By tomorrow evening we will be ready to start cleaning up the mess in the fellowship hall.  What we do not finish will need to be done on Saturday.  We also have a number of smaller projects that need to be resolved as well.  If you would be interested in helping please contact one of our Trustees (Dan Henry, Todd Hunter or Norman Karns) or one of our Stewards (Carmen Angulo, Faith Shimko, or Lucila Vargas).

Ashley has a basketball tournament Friday afternoon in Hillsboro and will play again on Saturday so I plan to go and take my parent so they can watch Ashley play basketball.  I hope to finish the painting tomorrow by noon so I can clean up and go to the game.  So if you are able to help tomorrow afternoon or evening contact a trustee or a steward.

Check out the church Facebook “Eastridge Nazarene Church” page for photos of the work.

Wedding Shower
On Sunday afternoon at 4:30 there will be a shower for Josh and Jill Heer.  Men are also invited to attend this shower and it will be a chance to see the newly remodeled fellowship hall.

Snow Shoveling Volunteers Needed
If you would like to come out on a Sunday morning or Saturday to help shovel snow we have a sign-up list on the information table.  It seems to like to snow on Saturday evening quite often, but when it does we would like to have some volunteers help us shovel the walkways.

Valentine Banquet
The teens will have a Valentine Banquet on February 15th to raise money for a summer mission trip.  They will be selling tickets in the near future so let’s be prepared to support our youth group.

Guitarist David Smart
On Sunday morning February 1st we will have guitarist David Smart join us for a mini concert during the worship service.  David Smart was Josh Heer’s guitar instructor at MidAmerica Nazarene University.  We will give him a love offering at the end of our service.

See you Sunday!
Pastor Andy


Friday, January 16, 2015

E-Note From Pastor Andy 1-16-15

January 16, 2015

Dear Eastridge Family,
          
Hebrews 11 is one of those passages that can reinvigorate my faith.  It’s such an encouragement to hear that people have lived lives of faith before me.  They’ve made it through this journey and by faith, had these great successes.  They conquered temptation, were spared from floods, and gave God their best.
          
But, somewhere in the middle, something happens; something we can’t overlook about faith.  People stop conquering giants and having children miraculously.  The author of Hebrews writes that some, “quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight.  Women received back their dead by resurrection.”  He still has me at this point. I’m ready to take on the world.
          
My heart rejoices with each story of triumph, but he goes on, “Some were tortured refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life.  Others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment.  They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed by the sword.  They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated…wandering about in deserts and mountains and in dens and caves of the earth.”
          
Did I miss something?  What happened to crossing through seas and closing the mouths of lions?  These two groups of people, ones who saw amazing miracles because of their faith and those who suffered for it, are grouped in the same passage, in the same verse even.  We cannot miss what this means or we’ll live a distorted life of faith.  In this life, faith doesn’t only produce miracles, it also produces suffering.  Jesus assured us of this (John 15:18-21).  Nearly all of the disciples were killed and John was exiled to a remote island.
          
Notice, these individuals who suffered for their faith are not cast into a corner and ignored.  They’re celebrated, like those we view as “champions” of faith.  Here’s what he says of these mistreated faithful heroes: “the world was not worthy” of them. He says the same of the Old Testament heroes who experienced some of God’s greatest miracles, “But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one.  Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.”(11:16)
          
We must not be ashamed of suffering.  It may make us uncomfortable or even question Jesus.  That’s how Peter felt when he found himself struggling with the fate of his faith: death on a cross.  In John 21, after Jesus revealed this to him, Peter pointed to John, demanding that they receive fair lives of faith, “Lord, what about him?” Jesus replied, “If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you?  You must follow me.”
          
Jesus requires the same of us.  We must follow him, wherever he leads.  

Sanctity of Human Life Sunday
“Thou shalt not kill….”—Exodus 20:13  Since the Supreme Court decision in 1974 that made abortion on demand legal in America, there have been more than 50,000,000 abortions.  This coming Sunday is “Sanctity of Human Life” Sunday.  We need to pray for repentance in our nation that we might be given the grace to eradicate the scourge from America.

Church Work Day
Instead of having one church work day we will have an entire week of work.  We have several jobs that need to be completed from painting to construction from plumbing to electrical.  If you can help out with any of these projects please see one of the trustees for more details.  Our three trustees are Dan Henry, Todd Hunter and Norman Karns.

Church Membership Class
If you would like to become an official member of the Church of the Nazarene here at Eastridge please contact Pastor Andy.  We will start a new membership class soon so don’t miss out.



Wedding Shower
The wedding shower for Mr. and Mrs. Josh Heer will be Sunday, January 25th, at 4:30 pm in the fellowship hall.  Men are included!

Favorite Quotes of the week
Joyless Christians are that way because they only have enough religion to make themselves miserable. - Leonard Sweet

The key to unity is not agreement; it’s humility. – Neil Cole

I look forward to worshiping with you on Sunday!
Pastor Andy

Saturday, January 10, 2015

E-Note From Pastor Andy 1-9-15

January 9, 2014

Dear Eastridge Family,

This has been another busy week for me and I know it has been for several others as well.  Pastor Josh and Jill have tried flying out for a honeymoon but the weather and flight delays/cancellations have been a challenge.  Blanca gave birth to a daughter Diana this week.  Keven had another lung surgery this week.  Ben and Elaine bought a new house and have been trying to move in with the cold weather.  Several have been dealing with the flu and other sicknesses.

Every year as pastor I like prayerfully consider the spiritual condition of the church and what areas we might need to make changes or improvements.  When I call myself a pastor, I recognize it is not my church but God’s church and Jesus’ Bride and I am the under-Shepherd as Peter says.  This certainly takes some pressure off of me but I still carry a large amount of responsibility.  I want to lead the church in a way that honors God.  I want to faithfully represent Jesus here to you all at Eastridge. 

This Sunday I plan to share a message entitled “What This Church Needs Is…”  I want to encourage you to make every effort to be here for worship on Sunday.  On Sunday evening I will give you all some opportunities to give me any feedback you may have from the morning message.

Let me close my thoughts with this account from a German Christian who lived in Germany during WWII.

I lived in Germany during the Nazi Holocaust.  I consider myself a Christian.  We heard stories of what was happening to the Jews, but we tried to distance ourselves from it, because what could anyone do to stop it?

A railroad track ran behind our small church and each Sunday morning we could hear the whistle in the distance and then the wheels coming over the tracks.  We became disturbed when we heard the cries coming from the train as it passed by.  We realize that it was carrying Jews like cattle in the cars!

Week after week the whistle would blow.  We dreaded to hear the sound of  those wheels because we knew that we could hear the cries of the Jews in route to death camp.  Their screams tormented us.
     
We knew the time the train was coming and when we heard the whistle blow we     began singing hymns.  By the time to train came past our church we were singing at the top of our voices.  If we heard the screams, we sang more loudly and soon we heard them no more.

Years have passed and no one talks about it anymore.  But I still hear the train whistle in my sleep.  God forgive me; forgive all of us who called ourselves Christians it did nothing to intervene.

Can you hear the whistle blowing here in Wichita?  I can hear it and I don’t want to just sing louder.  I want to make a difference in the lives of those who are going off into eternity separated from God.  I want to proclaim and take the message of the Gospel to a world that desperately needs the good news.  Will you join me?

Board Meeting
Sunday afternoon we have our monthly church board meeting at 4:30 in the Fellowship Hall.

Snow Shoveling Volunteers Needed
If you would like to come out on a Sunday morning or Saturday to help shovel snow we have a sign-up list on the information table.  It seems to like to snow on Saturday evening quite often, but when it does we would like to have some volunteers help us shovel the walkways.

Furnace Update
We installed a new wall furnace in the church office at a cost of a little over $2000.  I know some of you have already given and plan to help us cover that expense.  We appreciate it very much.

Contribution statements for 2014
On Sunday we will distribute the contribution statements for 2014.  If you have any questions about your record of giving please contact Todd Hunter our church treasurer.

Favorite Quotes of the Week
“Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you may not understand at the time.” - Oswald Chambers

“You can preach beyond your character but never disciple beyond your character.” - Lance Ford

See you Sunday!

Pastor Andy


Saturday, December 6, 2014

E-Note From Pastor Andy 12-5-14

December 5, 2014


Dear Eastridge Family,

Am I just a fan of Jesus or a committed follower?  A couple years ago pastor Kyle Idleman wrote a book entitled “Not a Fan;” where he made a distinction between a Biblical Follower and Disciple of Jesus and simply being a non-committed fan of Jesus.

The call of Jesus of history is far more radical and all life-consuming than the institutionalized-domesticated version portrayed through the centuries of Christendom.   I mean what does it cost to be a follower of a man who said such things as, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even life itself—such a person cannot be my disciple.  And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple (Luke 14: 26-27).”

I find myself being very comfortable my lifestyle of a middleclass American.  We are pretty much able to do whatever we really want to do.  We are blessed with excellent health care, much more than adequate shelter, and I spend more than I should on food, clothes and stuff.  So what did Jesus mean when he said, “Those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples” (Luke 14:33)?

This past month I have been reflecting on the passage in Philippians 2 trying to prepare myself for Christmas.  In this Scripture Paul describes imitating Christ’s humility. “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit.  Rather in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interest but each of you to the interest of others. In your relationships with one another, have the same attitude of mind Christ Jesus had.”




·         Church Board Meeting
Sunday afternoon we will have our monthly board meeting at 4:30 pm.

·         Children’s Christmas Program and Practice and Church dinner
Next Saturday morning at 10am the Children will have a Christmas Program rehearsal that will end at noon.  We need all the children to attend this important rehearsal so we are ready for the program on Sunday morning December 14th.  After the morning service and program we will have our Thanksgiving/Christmas dinner in the Fellowship Hall.

·         9 Days of Christmas
Pastor Daniel and Gloria are leading a 9 Days of Christmas beginning on December 16th and run through Christmas Eve. They will be meeting in different homes for a time of Bible reflection, carols, and prayer and Latin food.
Dec. 16 – Jesus and Carmelita
Dec. 17 – Carlos and Lucila
Dec. 18 – Fernando and Aurea
Dec. 19 – Carmen
Dec. 20 – Frank and Janeth
Dec. 21 – Alejandro and Angelica
Dec. 22 – Juan Carlos and Blanca
Dec. 23 – Daniel and Gloria
Dec. 24 - Church

·         Favorite quote of the week
"We pursue the thought of being thankful that we can be thankful for the worst that can happen." - E. Stanley Jones

I’m looking forward to worshiping with you on Sunday

Pastor Andy

Friday, November 21, 2014

E-note From Pastor Andy 11-21-14

November 21, 2014

Dear Eastridge Family,

I know many of you have probably seen this before but in light of our recent election and apparent direction of our nation I thought it would be good for us to be reminded of our Christian foundation.



This is the text of George Washington's October 3, 1789 national Thanksgiving Proclamation; as printed in The Providence Gazette and Country Journal, on October 17, 1789.

WHEREAS it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor; and whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me "to recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness."

Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted; for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations, and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have shown kindness to us), and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally, to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand, at the city of New York, the third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty-nine.
G. Washington.

  • Thanksgiving Offering


The Church of the Nazarene's Thanksgiving Offering for the World Evangelism Fund has been a denominational tradition for more than 80 years.
As it did in its beginning, the offering continues to raise support and awareness for missionary causes through the World Evangelism Fund.  Created in 1923, the WEF (formerly called the General Fund) provides essential resources for the denomination's churches and missional outposts in more than 159 world areas, and allows individuals and organizations to continue our shared mission “To make Christlike disciples in the nations.”

On Sunday we will have envelopes in the bulletins where you can place your Thanksgiving offering or if you want to mark your check Thanksgiving Offering.

  •  Children’s Christmas Program and Practice


Tomorrow the children will be having a practice at the church from noon until 2 pm.  We will be serving pizza and making a piñata and working on the program.  The program is scheduled for Sunday morning December 14th.  After the morning service and program we will have our Thanksgiving/Christmas dinner in the Fellowship Hall.

  • Did You Know


Our monthly church mortgage is payment is about $900 each month and we owe a little more than $100,000

  • Favorite quotes of the week


A man prayed and at first he thought prayer lies in talking.  But he became more and more quiet until in the end he realized prayer is listening."  —Søren Kierkegaard

"If you want to get warm you must stand near the fire.  If you want joy, peace, eternal life, you must get close to what has them."  - C. S. Lewis

"If our faith costs nothing, it contributes nothing." - E. Stanley Jones



I’m looking forward to worshiping with you on Sunday



Pastor Andy