Thursday, May 17, 2018

From teens... For teens...

Graduation Day is nearing.  These are some thoughts for our graduates and for those just entering their teens years.

In his book Thoughts for Young Men, J.C. Ryle wrote, "Youth is the seed-time of full age, the molding season in the little space of human life, the turning-point in the history of man's mind."  In other words, what each of us will become later in life largely depends on what we become now.  Are we taking that seriously?

In 1 Corinthians 9:24-25, the apostle Paul writes, "Run in such a way as to get the prize.  Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training.  They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever." (NIV).

We are convinced that the teen years are the primary time God has given us for "strict training."  Are you thinking, "Strict training?  You've got to be kidding!" Stick with me. 

Proverbs 20:29 says, "The glory of young men is their strength."  Did you catch that?  At no time are we better positioned to decide who we will become.  Our strength - sharp minds, energetic bodies, and flexible schedules - is our glory.  We are not likely to have this same set of strengths ever again.  By choosing to use our teen years for strict training, we can choose to set direction, develop character, and build momentum for an amazing future.

But what happens when we fail to use our teen years for strict training?  What does a belly flop in real life look like?   Unfortunately, it's not too difficult to find out.

A growing movement of young people is rebelling against low expectations of today's culture by choosing to "do hard things" for the glory of God.

Let's combat the idea of adolescence as a vacation from responsibility and redefine it as a launching pad of life.

You can also check out:

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Who's the Hero of Your Story?

It's easy to put ourselves front and center, but as Christians, we know there's a plot twist. God is actually the main character and He invites us to join in what He's doing. Worshipping Him means much more than singing specific songs on Sunday mornings. It means we get to be a part of the transformative work He's doing in the world.

What if we chose to put God center stage? How would the story unfold?

Monday, May 7, 2018

18 Churchy Things the Class of 2018 Won't Get

This spring’s high school graduates were born in the year 2000. Here are some churchy things for which they have little to no context for…
  1. “Shout to the Lord”
    That was 1994, folks.
  2. When Worship Bands Were EdgyCarey Nieuwhof wrote about this very well in his article “The Impending Death of Cool Church.
  3. Billy Graham Crusades 
    His last was in 2005. They were five years old.
  4. Televangelists Committing Fraud and ConspiracyMore on why that should influence how your church talks about money in Tony Morgan’s article “It’s Not the ‘80s Anymore.”
  5. Giving Cash at ChurchThe Unstuck Group’s intern this semester specifically mentioned “offering plates of all varieties… the strangest ones I’ve seen were velvet bags with wooden handles. Very retro.” Tony also said his church doesn’t take an offering in services anymore. And there are no “giving boxes” either.
  6. Why “See You at the Pole” Is a ThingPrayer at school is not a part of their collective consciousness.
  7. “I Can Only Imagine”Aka Contemporary Christian Music as an influential genre.
  8. Overhead Transparencies for Song Lyrics / Reading Songs from a HymnalThey have no idea why older people in your church don’t like projectors and screens.
  9. I Kissed Dating GoodbyeBut, that doesn’t mean they are dating—at least not in real life. (Ask a few teenage girls when was the last time a boy actually asked them out. You’ll get some eye-rolling.)
  10. Multisite as a New ThingIn late 2005, there were already more than 1,500 multisite churches in the United States.
  11. The Charismatic Movement / The Word “Charismatic” Used in Spiritual ContextWhether you’re for it or against it, they don’t understand why.
  12. WWJD BraceletsAh, the ‘90s.
  13. Drama TeamsAka video clips without the magic of editing.
  14. Church DirectoriesIf you still have one of these, let me guess the average age of the people listed.
  15. Wearing Your Sunday BestSee #2. It’s been mostly acceptable to wear jeans to work, and church, since before they were born.
  16. CD Recordings of the SermonWhere would they even play a CD? If it’s not digital, they aren’t listening to it.
  17. Tent Revival Meetings
    Similarly to Billy Graham Crusades, without the historical context, these make no strategic sense. Why would you set up a tent beside your building and have service every night? An 18-year-old probably won’t even bother to ask why. They’ll just chalk it up to weird religious stuff.
  18. What You Mean by “Traditional” or “Contemporary” Services Style
    “Contemporary” isn’t a thing. The 1990s started almost 30 years ago. If you’re trying to reach Gen Z and Millennials, and you think you have a “contemporary” service that will reach them, there’s a good chance you’re trying to connect with them using a style that emerged before they were born. The literal definition of contemporary is “belonging to or occurring in the present.” Oh, that we would own that definition. The Holy Spirit belongs to and occurs in the present, just as much as he did when the past was the present. As for “traditional” services, I can’t say it any better than Amy Anderson, The Unstuck Group’s Director of Consulting, recently did: If you have a service you’re calling “traditional,” it’s probably not reaching new people for Christ.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Church Sickness Warning...

Church Sickness: Hyper Activity Activation Syndrome

Overview: Hyper Activity Activation Syndrome happens when church members see busyness as the same as commitment and/or godliness.

Possible Symptoms Include:
Believing that being busy is most important to the Christian discipleship journey.
Battling other Christians to get your favorite 'Christian' activities put on the calendar.
Utilizing your checkbook and calendar to make sure people know how busy you are for god.
Inviting more people to your busy church activities and never asking, "Is this effective?".

Healing Steps to Take:
Be productive in Worship, Connection and Christian Service.
Wisely use your time and energy to make Kingdom differences.
Invest your time, talent and treasure in bringing honor to the name of Jesus.
Seek to be effective, not only busy.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Reviewing being in the midst of transition...

“A leadership transition can deliver one of the rarest organizational sightings: a robust pass from one leader to the next. It happens when the outgoing leader maintains integrity and focus. When the leader coaches the team on performance right up to the end, while setting their successor up for success.” - Sally Blount, "Leaving Well", Forbes Magazine

In February Pastor Tim announced that a succession plan has been approved by the conference. Rev. Curtis Banker will join Hanfield's staff as an appointed Associate Pastor beginning July 1, 2018. During this next season, the baton will be passed from Pastor Tim to Pastor Curtis with a planned 2-year transition of shared ministry.

How fitting that on that day of announcement we as a church began discussing a new service schedule and on that day the worship exhorted us to "Stand on the Promises of God" and trust that God is truly a "Way-Maker, miracle-worker, promise-keeper, light in the darkness," Pastor Tim preached a challenging message about God's favor and promises to extend through the left turns. We may be facing some unknowns in Hanfield's near future, but we are pursuing God, trusting that none of these are only human plans but are God-inspired plans, and that revival is continuing to bubble up.

We are questing together with Pastor Tim and all the people God brings to Hanfield to join the team in the Kingdom work.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Question of the Week

Question: "What does it mean to flee from temptation?"

Answer: Fleeing from temptation means we recognize it as an enemy and we go the other way, with no hesitation and no compromise. First Corinthians 6:19 says, “Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.” While the temptation is not sinning, sexual immorality begins with the temptation to engage in sexual activity outside of God’s boundaries. When we don’t flee from that temptation, the action soon follows.

The best and most literal biblical example of someone fleeing temptation is found in Genesis 39 when young Joseph, Jacob’s son, was targeted by his master’s wife for an adulterous affair. She tempted him day after day, but Joseph held firm to his convictions and rebuffed her advances. Not only did he refuse to go to bed with her, but he wisely refused to “even be with her” (Genesis 39:10). But one day when no one else was in the house, she caught Joseph and pulled him to her, trying to seduce him: “She caught him by his cloak and said, ‘Come to bed with me!’ But he left his cloak in her hand and ran out of the house” (verse 12). That is an excellent example of fleeing from temptation. Joseph did not stand around to argue or give himself time to reconsider. He fled.

We naturally flee from danger. When the building we are in catches fire, we flee to a safer place. When a hurricane is about to make landfall, we flee the coast. Unfortunately, when many people see temptation coming, they do not flee. Rather than flee temptation, they dabble in it, deflect it, postpone it, or analyze it; some embrace it. Could this be because most people do not recognize the danger inherent in temptation? We seem to be more concerned with physical dangers that threaten the body than we are with spiritual dangers that threaten the soul.

Romans 13:14 says, “Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.” Making provision for the flesh is the opposite of fleeing temptation. We make provision for our flesh when we accommodate the things that lead to sin and actually make preparations for sinning. Those who make provision for the flesh are like an over-indulgent parent who winks at his child’s misbehavior and gratifies his every whim. When we allow ourselves to remain in tempting situations instead of fleeing them, we are foolishly placing confidence in the flesh. We believe the lie that our sinful flesh will somehow find the strength to resist at the last moment. Then we are shocked and ashamed when, instead of resisting, we give in.

God provides strength and courage to any of His children who will live surrendered to His will (2 Thessalonians 2:16–17; Hebrews 12:10–12). “The name of the LORD is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe” (Proverbs 18:10). We are commanded throughout Scripture to stand firm and resist the devil’s schemes (Ephesians 6:10–18; James 4:7; 1 Peter 5:9). Satan’s traps are many and varied and usually begin with a tempting thought or situation. One way we resist the devil is to flee at the first hint of temptation.

As we flee from temptation, we naturally flee toward something else, and Paul tells us what that should be: “Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart” (2 Timothy 2:22). Wisdom recognizes the danger in temptation and bids us flee from it. “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and pay the penalty” (Proverbs 22:3).

Thursday, April 19, 2018

April Showers bring... service times!

Don't let May 6th sneak up on you without a plan 
on how you will Worship - Connect - Serve on that Sunday!

Monday, April 16, 2018

Reflections on the Sunday Sermon...

Sitting in a hospital room with a man from the congregation gave the opportunity to hear him telling about all the other people from church who had visited him—one congregant brought two hymnals and sang with him, another brought his instrument and played some tunes, others just stopped by with a smile or an encouraging word on lunch breaks or after work. All those churchpeople, he mumbled to me, made it easier to believe in God. When they are with me, he said, I know God is with me. The life of a congregation reveals the life of God. “Christ is present to us,” writes Herbert McCabe, “insofar as we are present to each other.”

When we read or pray the words of Psalm 23 we quickly realize the “you” David addressed his poem to is God. I hope others will recognize that “you” and then see all of us as the hands and feet, the flesh and bones of that "you" - the Body of Christ. “I fear no evil; for you are with me.” This reflection is a prayer for companionship, for us to be drawn together, for our presence to be signs of God’s presence and our love an incarnation of God’s love.

The gospel can be summed up in the psalmist’s word with—that God is with us, that we are with one another, and that we are with God when we are with one another. "With" involves the companionship of solidarity, and solidarity is at the heart of the gospel. As Dorothee Sölle puts it, “The best translation of what the early Christians called agape is still ‘solidarity.’” God’s love means solidarity, the embodied solidarity of God becoming flesh to get as close to us as possible, to be with us. And we find ourselves within God’s life when we are drawn into the lives of others, friends and strangers, neighbors across the street or across an ocean.

That might have been what Pastor Jeff was demonstrating as he walked the congregation in the middle of his sermon yesterday. What do you think?

Friday, April 13, 2018

Question of the Week

Question: "How can I know if something is a sin?"

Answer: There are two issues involved in this question, the things that the Bible specifically mentions and declares to be sin and those the Bible does not directly address. Scriptural lists of various sins include Proverbs 6:16-19, Galatians 5:19-21, and 1 Corinthians 6:9-10. There can be no doubt that these passages present the activities as sinful, things God does not approve of. Murder, adultery, lying, stealing, etc.—there is no doubt the Bible presents such things as sin. The more difficult issue is in determining what is sinful in areas that the Bible does not directly address. When the Bible does not cover a certain subject, we have some general principles in His Word to guide us.

First, when there is no specific scriptural reference, it is good to ask not whether a certain thing is wrong, but, rather, if it is definitely good. The Bible says, for example, that we are to “make the most of every opportunity” (Colossians 4:5). Our few days here on earth are so short and precious in relation to eternity that we ought never to waste time on selfish things, but to use it only on “what is helpful for building others up according to their needs” (Ephesians 4:29).

A good test is to determine whether we can honestly, in good conscience, ask God to bless and use the particular activity for His own good purposes. “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). If there is room for doubt as to whether it pleases God, then it is best to give it up. “Everything that does not come from faith is sin” (Romans 14:23). We need to remember that our bodies, as well as our souls, have been redeemed and belong to God. “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). This great truth should have a real bearing on what we do and where we go.

In addition, we must evaluate our actions not only in relation to God, but also in relation to their effect on our family, our friends, and other people in general. Even if a particular thing may not hurt us personally, if it harmfully influences or affects someone else, it is a sin. “It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother to fall...We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves” (Romans 14:21; 15:1).

Finally, remember that Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior, and nothing else can be allowed to take priority over our conformity to His will. No habit or recreation or ambition can be allowed to have undue control over our lives; only Christ has that authority. “Everything is permissible for me—but not everything is beneficial. Everything is permissible for me—but I will not be mastered by anything” (1 Corinthians 6:12). “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17).

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Missions Sunday!

8:30am & 11:00am
Jeff Brady and Mike Jessup
Taylor University Trip to Uganda and Rwanda

Tim Helm
Sporshow Trip to India

Lunch with Mike Jessup

Christians in the Wesleyan-Holiness tradition have often focused on “purity and power” as the central experience of our full consecration to God. However, Joe Dongell, professor of New Testament at Asbury Theological Seminary, scoured the complete works of John Wesley and found himself “stunned” by what he read about love (Dongell, p. 9). Dongell concluded that love played the most prominent role in Wesley’s thinking about the transformative aspects of our life with God (“love rushed through all 14 volumes like a tsunami,” p. 10). "Here are five points about Dongell's understanding of God’s love taken based on his reading of Wesley and adapted from Dongell’s short work, Sola Sancta Caritas (Holy Love Alone):

Scriptural Love is to love as Jesus loved. "We often think of love as something derived from our culture or intuition " (p.16). For Wesley, we look to Jesus to learn what love is: we are to love as Jesus loved (John 13 and 15). When you think of love, what comes to your mind?

Love is something prior to good actions. Love is not simply good actions that help others. Rather, love is a matter of the heart and is the motive for loving actions. I can act helpfully toward others, but it may spring from motives other than authentic love (See 1 Cor. 13). "Love is always a matter of the heart first" (p.17). Do you agree that good actions may not stem from a heart of love? Will you take a few moments and examine the state of your own heart in relation to your good deeds?

Love’s origin is God himself. The epistle of 1 John tells us clearly that “Love comes from God” (1 John 4:7, 8). Whatever true love we express is only the love we have first received from God. Whatever love we express to others “is always and only the love we have already received from God” (p. 18). How does the knowledge that God is love and cannot be known apart from love change the way you think about your experience with God?

Love is a gift from God.  We should seek to receive love from God since love does not originate in us, but is a gift (p. 19). This is the very love we are then commanded to express to God and others. Just because someone claims to be a Christian doesn’t necessarily mean they have experienced “the deeper reception of God’s love” (p. 19). Is it possible to have “right beliefs” and not be transformed by God’s love?

Love poured out is a mighty force. “Love poured out by God through the Spirit is a mighty force set loose in the deepest chambers of the heart and community” (p.19). God’s love has both internal and external effects: “infused love expels sin from the heart” (there is no room for sin in a heart filled with love). It also produces outward holiness: expressing the same passion and mission toward others as God himself (p. 20).

Joseph Dongell. (2015). Sola Sancta Caritas. Franklin, TN: Seedbed.

To obtain a copy of Dongell’s work, Sola Sancta Caritas, visit Seedbed, a 21st century movement and media platform whose mission is to gather, connect and resource the people of God to sow for a great awakening.

Other works about Wesley's understanding of love in the Christian life:

Mildred Bangs Wynkoop.(1974,2015). A Theology of Love: The Dynamic of Wesleyaism. Kansas City, MO: Beacon Hill Press. Nazarene Publishing House.

Kenneth Collins. (2007). The Theology of John Wesley: Holy Love and the Shape of Grace. Nashville, TN: Abington Press.

Steven Maskar, Diana Hynson, and Marjorie Hewitt Suchocki. (2004).
A Perfect Love: Understanding John Wesley's "A Plain Account of Christian Perfection." Discipleship Resources.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Master's Praise

We were so glad to host IWU's Master's Praise this weekend!
You don't want to miss a Sunday around this place!

Monday, March 26, 2018

Services and Events

Maundy Thursday
Corporate Prayer

(Footwashing & Communion)

Good Friday

Easter Egg Hunt

Easter Morning
8:30am & 11am
Sunday Service

Adult Bible Fellowship Classes

Friday, March 23, 2018

Question of the Week

Question: "What is Palm Sunday?"

Answer: Palm Sunday is the day we celebrate the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, one week before His resurrection (Matthew 21:1–11). As Jesus entered the holy city, He neared the culmination of a long journey toward Golgotha. He had come to save the lost (Luke 19:10), and now was the time—this was the place—to secure that salvation. Palm Sunday marked the start of what is often called “Passion Week,” the final seven days of Jesus’ earthly ministry. Palm Sunday was the “beginning of the end” of Jesus’ work on earth.

Palm Sunday began with Jesus and His disciples traveling over the Mount of Olives. The Lord sent two disciples ahead into the village of Bethphage to find an animal to ride. They found the unbroken colt of a donkey, just as Jesus had said they would (Luke 19:29–30). When they untied the colt, the owners began to question them. The disciples responded with the answer Jesus had provided: “The Lord needs it” (Luke 19:31–34). Amazingly, the owners were satisfied with that answer and let the disciples go. “They brought [the donkey] to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it” (Luke 19:35).

As Jesus ascended toward Jerusalem, a large multitude gathered around Him. This crowd understood that Jesus was the Messiah; what they did not understand was that it wasn’t time to set up the kingdom yet—although Jesus had tried to tell them so (Luke 19:11–12). The crowd’s actions along the road give rise to the name “Palm Sunday”: “A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road” (Matthew 21:8). In strewing their cloaks on the road, the people were giving Jesus the royal treatment—King Jehu was given similar honor at his coronation (2 Kings 9:13). John records the detail that the branches they cut were from palm trees (John 12:13).

On that first Palm Sunday, the people also honored Jesus verbally: “The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, ‘Hosanna to the Son of David!’ / ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!’ / ‘Hosanna in the highest heaven!’” (Matthew 21:9). In their praise of Jesus, the Jewish crowds were quoting Psalm 118:25–26, an acknowledged prophecy of the Christ. The allusion to a Messianic psalm drew resentment from the religious leaders present: “Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, ‘Teacher, rebuke your disciples!’” (Luke 19:39). However, Jesus saw no need to rebuke those who told the truth. He replied, “I tell you . . . if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out” (Luke 19:40).

Some 450 to 500 years prior to Jesus’ arrival in Jerusalem, the prophet Zechariah had prophesied the event we now call Palm Sunday: “Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! / Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! / See, your king comes to you, / righteous and victorious, / lowly and riding on a donkey, / on a colt, the foal of a donkey” (Zechariah 9:9). The prophecy was fulfilled in every particular, and it was indeed a time of rejoicing, as Jerusalem welcomed their King. Unfortunately, the celebration was not to last. The crowds looked for a Messiah who would rescue them politically and free them nationally, but Jesus had come to save them spiritually. First things first, and mankind’s primary need is spiritual, not political, cultural, or national salvation.

Even as the coatless multitudes waved the palm branches and shouted for joy, they missed the true reason for Jesus’ presence. They could neither see nor understand the cross. That’s why, “as [Jesus] approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it and said, ‘If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes. The days will come upon you when your enemies . . . will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you” (Luke 19:41–47). It is a tragic thing to see the Savior but not recognize Him for who He is. The crowds who were crying out “Hosanna!” on Palm Sunday were crying out “Crucify Him!” later that week (Matthew 27:22–23).

There is coming a day when every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord (Philippians 2:10–11). The worship will be real then. Also, John records a scene in heaven that features the eternal celebration of the risen Lord: “There before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands” (Revelation 7:9, emphasis added). These palm-bearing saints will shout, “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb” (verse 10), and who can measure sum of their joy?

We'll celebrate Palm Sunday this week at 8:30am & 11am!

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

A Message from Scott Hoeksema, Administrative Council

We have three more prayer meetings leading up to Easter. This week's prayer session will be held Thursday, March 22, at 5:00pm with Ronald Morrell leading. Shirley Saddler will be leading the Annual Family Prayer Walk at 6:00pm on Sunday, March 25. It will begin on the north side steps of the Couthouse. Pastor Tim Helm will be leading our last session on Thursday, March 29, at 6:00pm. Please share reminders accordingly with the groups you come in contact with at Hanfield. If you are unable to attend physically, please take a few minutes to pray for discernment, wisdom, and leading as we continue to move forward with 'What's Next' at Hanfield. We are moving forward and asking God to guide our steps.

From a recent devotional I read: "Prayer is essential to true joy because joy comes from the Lord, and prayer places us in God’s presence."

Monday, March 12, 2018

Prayer Stations in the Harvest Room

You have another two opportunities to pray and work around the church. They are Monday, March 12 and Tuesday, March 13 - everything starts at 6pm on both nights.

For this week's prayer time, you are invited to join Jeff Brady in the Harvest Room to walk through 5 prayer stations that will help you journey through Jesus' temptation in the desert.

Following prayer time you are invited to stay and put in some time working around the church. It is not require to do both events, but we hope that you would consider it.

Friday, March 9, 2018

The Jesus Prayer...

...also called the Prayer of the Heart, the Prayer of a Single Thought, or simply The Prayer

Theologically, the Jesus' Prayer is considered to be the response of the Holy Tradition to the lesson taught by the parable of the Publican and the Pharisee, in which the Pharisee demonstrates the improper way to pray by exclaiming: "Thank you Lord that I am not like the Publican", whereas the Publican prays correctly in humility, saying 

"Lord have mercy on me, a sinner" (Luke 18:10-14).

Monday, March 5, 2018

Skipping an Hour

You are supposed to move your clock forward to 3am at 2am, 
but we won't tell anyone if you decide to do it before you go to bed.

Friday, March 2, 2018

Question of the Week

Question: "What do I need to do to hear, 'Well done, good and faithful servant' when I arrive in heaven?"

Answer: In Jesus’ parable of the talents, the Lord tells of two faithful servants who used what they had been given to increase the master’s wealth. When the master returned from a long absence, he rewarded his two faithful servants and said to each of them, “Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!” (Matthew 25:21, 23). Every Christian longs to hear those words from Jesus’ lips someday in heaven.

We are saved by grace through faith (Ephesians 2:8–9), but we are saved “to do good works” (Ephesians 2:10). Jesus spoke of laying up treasures in heaven (Matthew 6:20), and His parable of the talents hints at various rewards for those who faithfully serve Him in this world.

To hear those words, “Well done, good and faithful servant,” from Jesus, first make sure you are saved. The unbelieving will never hear those words, for “without faith, it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews 11:6). And recognize that Jesus is not only your Savior; He is also your Lord (see Luke 6:46). “Serve the LORD with gladness!” (Psalm 100:2, ESV).

Here are some ideas on ways you can serve the Lord:

1. Share the gospel. The Lord Jesus desires us to make disciples, teaching others of the nature and character of God and sharing the meaning of His death and resurrection (Matthew 28:18–20).

2. Help the disadvantaged. In the story of the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16:19–31, the rich man is condemned because he doesn’t help Lazarus and because he trusts in his wealth too much. Don’t put self-gratification before the needs of others. First John 3:17 says, “If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?”

3. Forgive others for their offenses. This isn’t the same as reconciliation or trust, but it means you renounce vengeance. The Lord Jesus modeled forgiveness: “When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to [the Father] who judges justly” (1 Peter 2:23).

4. View your position of authority as an opportunity to help the people under you, and view your position of subservience as an opportunity to submit to your authority, just as Jesus submitted to the Father’s authority. Either way, you can be Christlike, because Jesus was both master and servant to different people. “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way, you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2).

5. Seek to know the character of God better through church fellowship, listening to sermons, studying the Bible, praying, and chronicling how He seems to have been involved in your life.

6. Recognize that every advantageous position you’re in is because of God, the Source of every blessing: “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights” (James 1:17).

7. Be willing to be unpopular, displaying rare courage like the Good Samaritan in Jesus’ parable (Luke 10:30–37). Do what the Bible says is right, always. “We must obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29, ESV).

8. In introspective moral judgment (evaluating your own character), look at the character of Jesus as a measure rather than rationalize your questionable actions and attitudes. Show humility.

It all comes down to this: love God more than anything and love others sincerely (Mark 12:30–31). At the judgment seat of Christ, those who are faithful to the Lord who saved them will hear those words, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” No true servant of the Lord could ask for more.

Recommended Resource: Your Eternal Reward: Triumph & Tears at the Judgment Seat of Christ by Erwin Lutzer

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

These prayer times will last 30-45 minutes
or as long as they need to last.

Are you a current leader? 

March 1st at 6pm with Shirley Saddler

Are you a part of Hanfield or want to join us?

March 6th at 6pm with Brad Terhune
March 7th at 7am with Brad Terhune

March 12th at 6pm with Jeff Brady
March 13th at 6pm with Jeff Brady

March 22nd at 5pm with Ronald Morrell

March 29th at 6pm with Tim Helm

Come to one or come to all.
You are welcomed and wanted.
All of these will be held at the church
and we will pick a room that fits
our size at each gathering.

There will also be our Annual Prayer Walk
held on the Courthouse Square on Sunday,
March 25th at 6pm with Shirley Saddler
overseeing the evening's prayer events.

Monday, February 26, 2018

Sunday Night Classes!

Meeting on March 4, 11 & 18

Taking a Break for Palm Sunday and Easter

Finishing the Spring Series on April 8, 15 & 22

All Classes run from 6pm to 7:30pm
to match our format for GAP Kids, Club 56 and Youth
(which meet on Sunday night regularly)

Teacher: Rev. Tim Helm
Held in the Office Conference Room

Teacher: Rev. Kent Kessler
Held in Overflow Room 104

Teacher: Rev. Brad Terhune
Held in Overflow Room 106
(There is a 10 minute video introduction to each of the
6 weeks with teaching and discussion to follow.)

Our Sunday Morning Routine is Changing

The Reason:
                Our current format was established, in part, to give our church members opportunities to Worship, Connect and Serve each Sunday in a variety of ways over a variety of hours. There are some that have fully embraced that and attend a worship service, connect in an ABF and serve in another ministry area over a span of the three-time slots each week. Though, that is not the norm. Many come to two hours, but the majority is here for one hour. The prevailing feeling is that we need to explore another way to program Sundays while still setting us up for other positive engagement opportunities. A new concurrent model (as different from our current sandwich model) will allow for people from both services to interact with each other and see one another on site. It opens the possibility that dinners and fellowships held after concurrent services and classes will have more people stay due to the lack of time gap. It also builds the momentum of crowds interacting in closer spaces and timeframes to one another.
                This change is not without its own downsides, but we prayerfully believe it is a change worth making.

The Decision:
                The Administrative Council asked the staff to consider the options. The staff responded with a recommendation and the Administrative Council voted for it in the affirmative.

New Service Schedule:
8:15am                 An early opportunity for classes that do not need childcare for meeting. Also, a 
                             possible timeslot for Communion and Devotion for workers that may not get to 
                             attend a service that weekend.  Not published publically (i.e. online, 
                             newspaper or in official schedules after our intial discussions)
9:30am                 1st Service with concurrent Worship, ABF, Sunday School and Kid’s Ministries.
10:45am               2nd Service with concurrent Worship, ABF, Sunday School and Kid’s Ministries.
[All services and classes are scheduled for 60 minutes which allows for a 15 minute transition and fellowship period.]

                                February 25th – Announcement to ABFs
                                March 4th – Bulletin and Service Announcements
                                April 1st – Easter Services with the greatest attendance and
                                                   reach with new schedule info
                                May 6th – Transition to new schedule

Next Steps for ABFs and Classes:
                                Have a discussion and request which service (9:30am OR 10:45am) 
                                you’d like to meet during for your ABF or Sunday School Class. Once the 
                                requests are in, we will compare them to available spaces and get
        back with your class to set the official time and space prior to our 
        advertising push of the new schedule.
        (Place your request in the Drop Box or email them to

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Lenten Journey Devotionals - Week 2

Happy Sunday! We look forward to worshiping with you at 8:30am or 11am and connecting with you at 9:45am for Adult Bible Fellowships and Sunday school for all ages.

Did you know the Christian Church universal has moved into a season on the Church calendar called Lent? Lent is a season marked by fasting: an inward journey encouraging us to consider our sin before God for purification and preparation for the work He has for us. It is also a corporate journey as the Body of Christ walks through this season together.

To aid in this Shirley Saddler still has "Seek God for the City" devotional books available in the foyer of the church. This is available in app form as well (Seek God 2018). Check with her to participate.

Additionally, Jeff Brady is encouraging our youth to dig into the Bible in slightly smaller bites with Lenten Fast themed Scripture selections. In the pursuit of our Body of Christ connecting ever deeper, the youth group has made these available to the whole church as well (below, in this post).

However you choose to engage and deepen your faith walk this Lent, remember that we're all in this together. Hanfield UMC i
s here for you, we all are seeking and praying for revival together, and eagerly anticipating Resurrection in our lives, community, and world this Easter and beyond. We hope these resources are helpful. Thank you!

Lenten Devotional Scriptures -  Week 2
During this season of Lent we challenge you to seek God by exploring the truths of Scripture, His words to us.
Begin each reading with a prayer, “Lord, please speak to my heart, grant understand, and help me live it out. Amen.”

Feb 25: Matthew 6:5-15
- When Christ taught His disciples to pray, He made clear that ego will not get us to the Father’s heart. Whose will shall be done? If ours, we’ve missed something.

Feb 26: James 4:1-12
- If we are attempting to rend our hearts and test our fast for good fruit and overcome our ego, then let us find some practical words to each of those ends.

Feb 27: Jonah 3:1-10
- Let us not forget that we once lived in, and occasionally re-visit, our own sort of inner Ninevah, so please, keep doing the inner-heart work to let God redeem us.

Feb 28: Psalm 130
- May the song book of old continue the inner-heart work of these first two weeks of Lent and refresh us for more.

Mar 1: Deuteronomy 6:1-9
So often we forget to meditate on God’s Scripture in order to “write it in our hearts”. Rather, we fill our hearts with so much else. Let reset, refresh, and re-seek God.

Mar 2: Ezekiel 18:21-28
- God’s grace is so easily forgotten as we judge the wickedness around us. At other times we ignore the wickedness in our own lives and prevent God from giving grace. But He is offering free grace to you. Will you take it?

Mar 3: Psalm 51

- Like the woman washing Jesus’ feet, let us acknowledge our own sin and beg forgiveness. It is in waiting upon Him that we find His heart.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Lenten Journey Devotionals

Happy Sunday! We look forward to worshiping with you at 8:30am or 11am and connecting with you at 9:45am for Adult Bible Fellowships and Sunday school for all ages.

Did you know the Christian Church universal has moved into a season on the Church calendar called Lent? Lent is a season marked by fasting: an inward journey encouraging us to consider our sin before God for purification and preparation for the work He has for us. It is also a corporate journey as the Body of Christ walks through this season together.

To aid in this
Shirley Saddler still has "Seek God for the City" devotional books available in the foyer of the church. This is available in app form as well (Seek God 2018). Check with her to participate.

Jeff Brady is encouraging our youth to dig into the Bible in slightly smaller bites with Lenten Fast themed Scripture selections. In the pursuit of our Body of Christ connecting ever deeper, the youth group has made these available to the whole church as well (in this post).

However you choose to engage and deepen your faith walk this Lent, remember that we're all in this together.
Hanfield UMC i
s here for you, we all are seeking and praying for revival together, and eagerly anticipating Resurrection in our lives, community, and world this Easter and beyond. We hope these resources are helpful. Thank you!

From iLuminate Youth:

Lenten Devotional Scriptures
During this season of Lent we challenge you to seek God by exploring the truths of Scripture, His words to us.
Begin each reading with a prayer, “Lord, please speak to my heart, grant understand, and help me live it out. Amen.”

Sunday, Feb 18: Matthew 4:1-11
- At the beginning of Lent, a 40-day period of fasting from something that we rely on more than God, we remember Christ’s own 40 day fast in the desert to prepare Him for His upcoming ministry.

Monday, Feb 19: Job 42:1-6
- After Job’s life-changing ordeal and argument with God, he can do nothing but submit to God’s supremacy. What do you need to submit to Him today?

Tuesday, Feb 20: Matthew 6:16-18
- Though we don’t do a full, strict fast, Lent is indeed a fast. Let Christ’s words inspire and guide your own fast this season.

Wednesday, Feb 21: Deuteronomy 9:15-19
- Moses’ own 40 day fast before the presence of the Lord was for the vision and direction of the nation of Israel. May your own fast cause you to Praise Him for what He will reveal to you!

Thursday, Feb 22: Psalm 25:1-7, 16-21
- Let us be comforted, encouraged, and a bit challenged simply by calling on the Lord.

Friday, Feb 23: Matt 25:31-46
- The test of any fast is not whether we look changed for God, but whether our hearts have been “rended” enough that we are ready to act changed. May Christ’s words become a litmus test, then.

Saturday, Feb 24: 2 Samuel 12:13-23
- On this 1 week anniversary of starting our Lenten Fast, perhaps a reminder of why we have undertaken this fast. Simple obedience? Peer pressure? Or the utmost desire of a heart desperately seeking God’s will and touch ?

Thursday, February 15, 2018

The Lenten Journey

Ash Wednesday, February 14, marked the beginning of Lent. A season marked in the Christian Church by 40 days, not counting Sundays, leading up to the celebration of Easter.

Repentance, fasting, and prayer during the season of Lent help to prepare us for Easter. And the 40 days also represents the time Jesus spent in the wilderness, as well as his time of response to temptation and preparation for his public ministry.

Today, Christians often participate in Lenten Bible studies, book studies, silent retreats, personal sacrifice (choosing to give up something) or daily prayer and devotional emphasis. You may take this time to focus on doing one specific thing to bless others and glorify God.

As we enter into this season, I pray that we will find time to be kind to our minds, bodies, and souls, as well as discover or rediscover the blessing of silence.

Throughout these next 40 days, our lives may include good news announcements, moments of joy, as well as tears of sadness or grief. My personal prayer is that I may be emptied so that I become, as Robert Benson writes in Living Prayer, “a space created” that can be filled by God.

Lent is a season in the liturgical calendar that will come and will go. However, we are reminded that our God is with us for “the long haul of our lives.” May we draw strength from our closer walk with Jesus

[One day] “He was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.”” – Luke 11:1 (NSRV)

Be Encouraged.

Bishop Julius C. Trimble

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

The Hanfield Challenge

"Will you recommend fasting or abstinence, both by precept and example?"

This was the question asked of Pastor Tim and all ordained Methodist ministers

at their ordination. As Lent starts this month,

we have provided some options to consider in taking

Click HERE to see them and read some

frequently asked questions on fasting.

Monday, February 5, 2018

10 Practical Lessons (Ten of 10)

Lesson 10 - Life Is A Gift – Celebrate Each Day

None of us have any idea how much time we have in this life, or even what the quality of that time will be. Embrace the fact that life truly is a gift, and resolve to celebrate each day.

Avoid the tendency to believe that bad things have control over your life. They may have an undue influence at the moment, but that doesn’t mean that your life is ruined forever.

Each day has its own troubles (Matthew 6:34), but it also has its own virtues. Do what you can to minimize your troubles, and then to embrace the goodness that’s around us every day if only we look for it. It’s just a better way to live, and a better way to be a witness to other believers and especially to non-believers.

After all, how we live – and what our attitudes are toward life – are our greatest witness to the world.

Entering our Second Week of Lenten Prayer Focus!

Monday, January 29, 2018

10 Practical Lessons (Nine of 10)

Lesson 9 - It’s Not All About You – Or Me

We share the world with more than seven billion people. Each has their share of victories, and more than enough defeats. Neither your triumphs nor your tragedies are more important than those of other people around you.

Be prepared to genuinely celebrate the success of others. Also be prepared to help others in the face of their own tragedies. We all want others to celebrate our triumphs, and be there to pick up the pieces when we’re suffering. We have no right to expect unless we first do the same for others.
This is also how you develop humility, and humility is the foundation better relationships with other people, and with our Heavenly Father. True happiness and success in life aren’t possible without it.

Read On... Ephesians 4:2; Philippians 2:3; Romans 12:16; Galatians 5:13

Friday, January 26, 2018

Sermons and Series Notes

Sermon Notes available on 'The Bible App'
each Sunday Morning.

(Download it for your Apple or Android device.)

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Highlights from leaders that are having to close churches:

Culture is changing whether we want to accept it or not.

It’s often better to approach and accept change at an individual level
before your try to change things at the corporate level.

Healthy churches are often acceptant, excited, and embracing of cultural change
while adhereing to the Gospel and orthodox tenets of the faith.

Healthy churches know where they have been (healthy nostalgia),
but are more focused forward by asking, "What's next?".

Small groups must be open to new people and
be disciple-making groups for a church to be healty.

You might be part of the dying church...

...if your response to change is always anger.

...if nostalgia is the focus of the majority of your church conversations.

...if you find yourself continually confusing methods and facilities with the Gospel.

...if you have little to no interaction with non-Christians.

...if you deflect blame onto the culture for your church's ills.

...if you refusal to see reality of this list in your church.

Monday, January 22, 2018

10 Practical Lessons (Eight of 10)

Lesson 8 - Make A Provision For The Future – But Live For Today

This is one of the real balancing acts in our culture, particularly if you are a Christian. We should be making a provision for the future so that we are in a position to deal with the uncertainties of life. When this becomes the priority, we’re at risk of going in the wrong direction.

If your orientation toward the future is too great, you may be inviting the following risks:
  • You’re so focused on your own future survival, that you may miss the needs of people near you.
  • You may miss the simple pleasures of today, while you are busy preparing for tomorrow.
  • You may not live long enough to enjoy your provision (Scriptural reference: Luke 12:16-21 – The Parable of the Rich Fool).
  • Your emphasis on building your own provisions could blind you to the reality and necessity of God’s provision.

Make a provision for the future, but live for today. Never be so obsessed with the future that the blessings, revelations, and opportunities of today are no longer relevant.

Monday, January 15, 2018

10 Practical Lessons (Seven of 10)

Lesson 7 - Forgive Others – Forgive Yourself

In the Lord’s Prayer, it says, ” . . . and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who have sinned against us.” (Matthew 6:12 NIV) Take that to heart! We will be forgiven by God in the measure that we forgive others. And when you’re tempted to withhold mercy from someone else, never forget that the day will come when you will need mercy from others.

You also need to forgive yourself. Guilt is a trap, and it can destroy your life if you allow it. You will make mistakes, and at times you may even be the devil in someone else’s life. When that happens, recognize your failure, seek forgiveness – then get on with your life.