Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Weekend Wrap Up

Well as I'm preparing my Connect Group Bible study for tomorrow morning and thinking back through the weekend, I am so thankful for the last three days. I got to spend some good quality time with my girls; I was able to ride my bike with some good weather, finally; we had a great day of worship; I got to go out on a date with my wonderful wife; and I got to spend some time with some good friends...

This upcoming week will be extra busy because I'm starting one day behind, but it should be a good week.

Tomorrow morning starts off with my Men's Connect Group, then a quick meeting with the bank (they are lowering my interest rate on my mortgage!!!), then staff meeting, then hopefully I can focus on preparing for upcoming messages for a few hours.

I hope you had a good weekend and I pray that this next week is a great week for both you and me...

Pastor Noel

Sunday, May 30, 2010

A Blessing For My Girls

In the morning message today, I shared how I prayed and asked the Lord to show me what I should pray for my daughters. I wrote down what I felt like the Lord wanted me to pray and I shared it with them by praying this prayer over them. For more info, you can listen to the message when it is posted on our church website next week. If it would help you to pray about what you should specifically pray for your kids or grand kids, you can take a look at the prayers I prayed.



… Lord, I thank you for Hannah, my first daughter. Donna and I prayed and asked you for her and she is one of the best answers to prayer we have ever received from you. You have shown us your kindness through Hannah and we will always praise you for that.

… Lord in heaven, you have given Hannah such a sensitive spirit. That sensitivity shields her from some temptations. I pray that never changes. You have given her an exceptional intelligence. I pray she always uses that to serve you and your kingdom. You have given her remarkable self-discipline, which can help her accomplish much in life if she doesn’t lose it through distraction. So I pray that you keep her focused on the right priorities and never let the world steal the value of this special gift from you.

… Lord, thank you for the salvation that you have given to her. My greatest desire for my girls is that they would become your girls… that they would be children of God. Thank you for convicting Hannah’s heart and giving her the gift of faith so that she could call on you. Thank you for forgiving her sins and securing her eternal life through the sacrifice of Christ.

… Lord, I ask that you increase Hannah’s faith. I know she struggles with fear and worry at times. I pray that you remind her of your faithfulness and trustworthiness. You have been so good and so faithful to our family through the years. I cannot count your blessings. Please let the memory of that faithfulness always be at the forefront of Hannah’s thoughts and let it guard her mind with the peace that passes understanding.

… Lord, I pray that you give Hannah a strong desire to study and know your Word. I believe you have specifically gifted her to excel in this. I ask that you will give her a special insight into what she reads. I pray the Holy Spirit will be her teacher. I pray that she will have the commitment to your Word as an eleven year old that will allow her to be used in an unusual way to teach your Word as a teen and as an adult. I pray that Donna and I will do the things we should do to foster this special gift. I pray that we will be a catalyst in what you want to do in her life and not a hindrance or a distraction.

… Lord, I ask even now that you bless Hannah’s future family. Please protect her innocence and purity. Fix in her mind the value of being a godly wife and a godly mom. Don’t let the world teach her that those are somehow less important roles than the roles the world may offer. I pray for her future husband. I pray that you protect his innocence and his purity. I pray that his parents are leading him to a close walk with you.

… Father, I give you my daughter, Hannah. She belongs to you. Use me to guide her, to teach her, to protect her. But Lord, don’t let me take her back. My desire is that she always be set apart for your honor.



… Lord, thank you for Emily, my baby daughter. You gave her to me and Donna at a time in life when so many good things were happening. She was the best of those things. Your undeserved goodness to us is amazing. Praise you for your kindness.

… Lord, thank you for the salvation that you have given to her. My greatest desire for my girls is that they would become your girls… that they would be children of God. Thank you for convicting Emily’s heart and giving her the gift of faith so that she could call on you. Thank you for forgiving her sins and securing her eternal life through the sacrifice of Christ.

… Lord, there is no doubt that Emily is fearfully and wonderfully made. I thank you for her winsome personality and her caring, soft heart. I believe you have gifted her with an unusual ability to encourage people and to bring joy into their lives. I pray that you will protect that. I ask that this special giftedness become a real ministry that changes lives and I pray that this ministry begins very early in her life. Please give Donna and I the direction we need to foster this ministry and to put her in the best situations to help her be a blessing to others.

… Lord, thank you also for giving Emily such a quick, sharp mind, and a love for reading, especially an early passion for reading your Word. I pray that her love for reading the Bible will be a transforming thing in her life. I pray she will be daily washed in your Word in such a way that her purity will be guarded, her wisdom will increase, and her joy will be contagious.

… Lord I ask that you give Emily greater focus. I know that she struggles with distractions, but with your help she can overcome this. I believe you have such important things for Emily to do in this life. I pray that she doesn’t miss any of them because of distraction.

… I pray, Lord, that you will make Emily into a prayer warrior. I pray that she will draw near to you in a special way and that you will draw near to her in a special way. I ask that you will increase her faith and expand her understanding such that prayer becomes one of the most important things in her life. I ask that this devotion to prayer becomes a source of help and strength not only for her but for our church and our community. I ask that you make her a leader in this ministry throughout her life. I pray that you will be honored in an uncommon way because of her heart for prayer to you.

… Lord, I ask even now that you bless Emily’s future family. Please protect her innocence and purity. Fix in her mind the value of being a godly wife and a godly mom. Don’t let the world teach her that those are somehow less important roles than the roles the world may offer. I pray for her future husband. I pray that you protect his innocence and his purity. I pray that his parents are leading him to a close walk with you.

… Father, I give you my daughter, Emily. She belongs to you. Use me to guide her, to teach her, to protect her. But Lord, don’t let me take her back. My desire is that she always be set apart for your honor.

Pastor Noel

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Wrap Up for the Week

It's been a pretty good week. I began the week praying that the Lord would help me be very productive this week. He has done so. Every item on this week's to-do list has been marked off. (That never happens.) Sermon is ready to go. I was able to make a ton of visits and pastoral phone calls. I was able to do every pending counseling request...

Yesterday was a very good day. I drove over to the Stowe Center in Columbus, a church and community mission our church helps sponsor. There I watched eleven of our church kids serve over 100 people in the soup kitchen. They did an excellent job. It is amazing to see how mature these kids can be when they are engaged in service. All the kids seemed anxious to come back for their assigned serving day in June.

I hope to have a lazy day today. This morning, I need to put together a little bit of lawn furniture Donna wanted, and then I'm going to spend a few hours on my bike. Maybe a family picnic this evening.

I hope to see you tomorrow. We are going to have a great day of worship.

Pastor Noel

Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Good Finish

A couple posts ago I said that Tuesday was a day with a good start and a good finish. Let me tell you about the finish.

One of our young church members, Matt Parker, who owns a consulting business based in Columbus asked me to attend an open house for some new offices he opened. It was an honor to attend.

At the open house were a bunch of people I didn't know, political leaders and consultants from around the state and even some who had flown in from around the country. Some of these were Matt's business peers, some were clients, some were potential clients.

During the program part of the evening, Matt shared how the business started and a little of their history and services. Then Matt got to the part about his faith in Jesus Christ. I stood there with a heart filled with pride, the good kind, as this young business man boldly talked about his relationship with Christ and then went on to honor the Lord in very specific words.

Unfortunately, few men today would have the courage to so boldly profess their faith before their business peers and clients. I am thankful to the Lord that we have some of those men, women, and young people in our church family.

It should thrill us all when our Lord is honored!

Pastor Noel

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

How To Be A Blessing To Your Kids

I just finished the first draft of my Sunday message. It has been a convicting study process. Since we are focusing on the life of Joseph in our Sunday messages these last few weeks I have spent time this week learning how Joseph and his father Jacob sought to be a blessing to Manasseh and Ephraim (Joseph's sons).

I realize that sometimes we just take the growth, maturity, and spiritual development of our kids or grandkids for granted. Joseph and Jacob were much more intentional. I have been convicted as I have outlined the things they did.

So Sunday we will study through this. I think it will be helpful whether your kids or grandkids are young or old. It is never too late to have some influence on those around us. In fact, the principles we will learn will teach us how to have influence in the lives of everyone around us, not just kids and grandkids.

Looking forward to Sunday!
Pastor Noel

A Good Start

Yesterday had a great start and a great finish. I'll tell you a little about the start here and I'll fill you in on the finish in my next post.

Yesterday was day one of our Tuesday morning men's Connect Group for the Summer semester. Things went well. All the men shared some personal prayer needs and we prayed individually for each of those needs. We also began to look at the Genesis story of the life of Joseph. I can't wait to see what the Lord will do through these 15 weeks.


Today I will be preaching at Violet Conners' funeral. I sat down yesterday with her husband and their three adult children. I've got to say there have been few times I've been with families that seem as close and as supportive of each other as them. I am actually looking forward to the funeral today. It will be a real celebration of Vi's life.

Pastor Noel

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Joseph Group

This morning is the first day of our new men's Connect Group for the summer semester. I'm really looking forward to it. As I was studying yesterday and preparing for how we would begin, I realized that almost every issue or struggle that men deal with is dealt with somewhere in the story of Joseph. Thirteen chapters in the book of Genesis... More than almost anyone else in the Bible... Joseph is a man every Christian man should study closely.

By the way, we had a pretty good day Sunday. Good crowd in worship despite the first really good weather day in a while.

Well, I had a good devotional time today. Time to get ready to head out...

Pastor Noel

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Reasons I'm Looking Forward To Tomorrow

I'm looking forward to tomorrow for several reasons...

... Tomorrow is the first day of our new Connect group semester. We have some new groups and some carry over groups. All of them will be good. Tomorrow we will have several people attend a Connect Group for the first time. In fact, I just received an email from someone that will be doing that. If you have not yet signed up for a group, just join us tomorrow at 9:30 and we will help you find a group that will be a good fit for you.

... Tomorrow we will begin again our Sunday morning prayer time around the alter. During weeks we have Connect Groups, many people from our church meet at 9:10 and gather around the altar as our deacons lead us in prayer for the upcoming service. I look forward to these special times.

... I'm fired up about my message tomorrow morning. See previous blog posts to read about that.

... I'm looking forward to our new Sunday night study. You can also read more about this in previous blog posts.

... I'm looking forward to meeting new people who will be visiting our church for the first time tomorrow.

... I'm looking forward to worshiping the Lord tomorrow!

Pastor Noel

Friday, May 21, 2010

Why We Aren't A Liberal Church

I made a last minute decision yesterday to change the focus of our upcoming Sunday night series. I still want to do what we had planned, but at a later time. Now we are going to spend the next three weeks focusing on who we are as a church and why we are that way.

The three message titles will be...

-- Why We Aren't A Liberal Church
-- Why We Aren't An Emerging Church
-- Why We Aren't A Liturgical Church

The point of this study is not to bash other churches but to help our church understand who we are and why. Churches across the country and in our area are changing. Some of those changes are good and have a biblical basis. Some of those changes are very bad and have no biblical basis. All kinds of activities, lifestyles, and beliefs are endorsed by churches and are said to be sanctioned by the Lord when Scripture clearly contradicts those claims.

The church is defined by God's Word.

I want us to look into Scripture and learn what the church should look like. I want us to know some of the errors of direction churches make and how they make them.

This first week we will answer the question: Why aren't we a liberal church? We will learn what is meant by the phrase 'liberal church'. We will look at some examples of practices and beliefs. We will learn how churches get to that place. And of course we will study the biblical model that speaks to this error.

I think this will be a profitable study. I hope you will join us.

Pastor Noel

Thursday, May 20, 2010

If Someone Hurts You -- Post II

I just finished the final draft of Sunday's message about what to do if you have been hurt. I can't wait until Sunday. There is so much relevant and life changing wisdom in Scripture and the Lord has taught me much about this subject as I have studied these last two days.

When we've been hurt, we find ourselves at a critical juncture in our lives. How we handle our hurt and the offending party will go a long ways toward determining our future and God's role in our lives. If you would like to really get prepared, read the story of Joseph in Genesis 39-50. I look forward to diving deep into parts of this Sunday morning.


On another subject, we had a great New Member's Class last night. The group asked many questions as we went through the material. The Lord added a number of new people to our church family last night!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

What To Do If Someone Hurts You

Has someone ever hurt you? Maybe it was someone in your family... Maybe a close friend... A coworker...

Often people carry that hurt around for years or even decades, and then worse than that when a hurt person gets a chance for revenge, some pretty negative things can happen. The result is more hurt, more broken relationships, bitterness, anger, and on and on.

I've spent the day studying part of the life of Joseph found in Genesis 40-45. In this passage we learn what to do if someone hurts us. We learn how to take a bad situation and make something redeeming out of it.

This is something we all need to learn. We will be focusing on this Sunday morning in our 10:45 worship service. I hope you will join us.

I usually study from my home study on Wednesdays, but I'm heading in to the church now for a meeting and for tonight's New Member Class. I'm liking forward to meeting new people the Lord is adding to our church family.

Pastor Noel

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Day of Meetings and More

Tuesdays are mostly meeting days. Things went well. Pastor Shawn tells me we have 256 adults signed up for adult Connect Groups for the Summer semester. That is good. We will likely have a few more sign up this week and a number of people will just show up for a group this next week and we will sign them up then. So this should be another good semester.

Think through people you know that could still be invited to the group you are going to attend. Give them a call this week. I think I'm going to invite the guy who has been working on my car lately and also our church architect. I don't know if either has a church but it can't hurt to ask.

Well, today is also the day I take a kid to dance practice, so I'm sitting outside the dance studio watching people fight over parking places in the rain. Fun, fun...

Pastor Noel

Monday, May 17, 2010

Upcoming Week

It is going to be a busy week but I had a refreshing time with the Lord this morning so I am ready...

This morning is the Heartbeats Golf Tournament. That is an annual event where we try to raise a little money for Heartbeats, a great organization that helps women in crisis situations, and have a little fun as well. Looks like it is going to rain all morning, so I don't know what that is going to do to the schedule.

I will be preaching a funeral at 1:00 p.m. today. The funeral is for someone I never met. These kinds of funerals can be difficult. Pray that I will have wisdom.

A couple of meetings this afternoon, and I hope to get a little bit of a jump on message prep this week since we are starting a new PM series.

Here is what I'm praying for this week...

... Some decisions about construction plans for preschool facility...
... Connect Ministry: The new semester begins Sunday...
... PM Series. I'll blog more on this tomorrow.
... Youth Ministry: Troy and I will be working together this week...
... New Member Class on Wednesday night...

Pastor Noel

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sunday Morning Prayer

What I'm praying for is morning...

... That our worship service will feature the Lord. I am praying at people will experience the presence of the Lord is morning through singing praises and responding to the preaching of His Word.

... I'm praying for the two special speakers we have this morning. I am praying that each of them will be able to convey a contagious enthusiasm and love for the Lord.

... Visitors and guests! I'm praying that those who are here this morning for the first time will feel the warm love of our church. I pray that they will be able to see how much our church loves Jesus and how much we care about them.

... I am asking the Lord to help me preach with clarity and passion. I want my words to reflect His words. I am praying for few distractions during the message time. I'm praying that people will have soft, receptive hearts.

... I am praying for Kids Praise...

... I am praying for those who will be in our service today who don't yet know the Lord. I pray that today is the day that choose to make Him their Lord.

... I am praying for the testimony a couple pin our church will be doing during the service this morning.

... I am praying, because I know that makes a difference!

Pastor Noel

Saturday, May 15, 2010


I'm sitting in Lexington, KY this morning waiting for the family to wake up and looking over my notes for tomorrow morning's message. Tomorrow we will be continuing our focus on life lessons we can learn as we study the Old Testament character of Joseph. This Sunday we will be focusing on Genesis 39 where we see Joseph showing an unusual amount of character in the face of temptation. When you stand back and look at this event from a distance, you can't help but marvel at his integrity, and when you take a very close up look you can't help but learn some important lessons that Joseph knew to help him live with so much integrity. We all need to learn these lessons.

We will also take some time to focus on the upcoming Connect Ministry semester. We have a testimony planned that will thrill you as we point to some of the life change we've seen in recent semesters. If you haven't yet signed up for a group, read through my recent blog posts for some suggestions or go to our website ( to see the whole catalog.

I've been in Anniston, AL these past two days visiting with my Mom. She has recently been diagnosed with lung cancer. She started chemotherapy last week, and she will start radiation next week. I wanted my girls to be able to spend some time with her before the treatment got into full swing. We had a good couple of days. Thank you for all who have been praying for her as she goes through is difficult time in her life.

Pastor Noel

Friday, May 14, 2010

More Connect Groups

We have so many great Connect Groups this next semester. It is hard to know which ones to blog about before Sunday. I've listed the descriptions for two more adult co-ed classes below.

Crazy Love is taught by Sam Smith. This will be a good group. I've read the Crazy Love book by Francis Chan. It is one of the best books I've read. I know it has made an impact on Sam's life too when he read it a year or so ago. I recommend this class to anyone who wants to learn to a have a more intimate walk with the Lord.

Essential Truths is taught by Ron Baughman. This group is going to focus on having a better grip on the core truths of the Christian faith. Not only will this help you in your personal walk but it will also help you to share and make an impact on those around you. I think this will be a good group both for those who have been walking with the Lord a while and those new to the faith.

Both of these groups meet Sundays at 9:30 at the church. If you would like to sign-up for either of these or any other group for this next semester you can fill out a Connection Card at church this Sunday or you can sign-up on our website at Remember this Sunday is the last official sign-up day.

Below are the group descriptions. A catalog of all the groups can be found on the church website.

Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God

The God of the universe is crazy about you! His love is the most powerful thing in the world and He wants to give it to you, so you can live for Him. If you have made a commitment to follow Christ, then join this group to be reminded and challenged in your walk. Let the love you have received from God impact your life like never before.

Essential Truths: Knowing Christ Personally

In this study you’ll learn what God expects of you, how to make life more meaningful, apply what you learn, and embrace life changing goals for yourself. Perhaps you’re a new follower of Jesus Christ, or maybe you’ve never fully understood the essential, core truths of the Christian faith. This revealing 13-week study will answer many of the questions you bump into as you seek to live out real-life faith.

Pastor Noel

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Total Money Makeover

One of the Connect Groups I am excited about this next semester is Total Money Makeover led by Scott Parry and Eugene Danner.

Scott and Eugene are going to lead this group through the Dave Ramsey book by the same title. Donna and I have read this book and tried to put it's principles, which are really Biblical principles, into practice. It has made such a big difference in our lives, and not just financially.

I believe every couple and every adult should go through this book no matter where they are financially. If we could learn to apply God's principles of money management to our lives, it would change our marriages, the direction for our future, our joy and contentment, and on and on...

I give away literally dozens of these books every year as I counsel with people struggling to get their footing in life and marriage. I believe going through this with Scott and Eugene would be a great experience.

This group meets on Wednesday evenings at 6:00. If you would like to sign up for this or any other Connect Group you may do so by filling out a card at the church and dropping it in a Connection Box or you can just go to our website: There is also a catalogue there of all of the Summer semester Connect Groups.

This coming Sunday, 5/16, is the last day to sign-up, so don't wait too long!

Pastor Noel

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Men's & Ladies' Speakers

This Sunday morning we have a special treat. At 9:30 all the men will gather together in Harmon Hall, and all the ladies will gather in the worship center to listen to some very special speakers.

For the ladies we have Julie Gilliam, a Christian inspirational speaker from the Columbus area and for the men we have Coach Klontz, the head baseball coach from Heath High school, and an outspoken believer.

Regular worship will still begin at 10:45, but plan to come early. This will be a great day!

Pastor Noel

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Connect Group: Evangelism

I want to highlight one of our upcoming Connect Groups for the summer semester.

Evangelism: The Way of the Master

This group will be led by Jason Hurley. In this group, Jason is going to lead people to have the tools and the confidence to be able to share their faith in any circumstance. The book, The Way of the Master, by Kirk Cameron and Ray Comfort teaches people how to lead people in make a profession of faith the way Jesus led people.

In addition to the regular group times which take place on Sunday mornings at 9:30, Jason is setting up opportunities for the group to go out and share the gospel in non-threatening environments. The goal is that when the fifteen week period is over, that everyone in the group will not only have the know-how but the practical experience that will help them be more bold and effective for the Lord.

Jason will be a great leader, in fact he has led this study multiple times before in a previous church. I believe this could be a great group for any adult who wants to take another step in their faith and make a difference in the lives of those around them.

If you have any questions, send me an email. I would love to help you. You can sign-up for this group either by filling out a Connections Card at church or by visiting our website at

Pastor Noel

By the way, don’t forget that this Sunday morning we have a special ladies speaker for the ladies and a special men’s speaker for the men. Both of those are at 9:30. The men are in Harmon Hall, and the ladies are in the worship center. Worship is at our regular time of 10:45 a.m..

One Good Year

I'm praying especially for Scott and Heather Parry this morning. They are flying to Dallas today to spend a week at a Fellowship One conference. It should be a beneficial conference. Fellowship One is the software we use to manage church information, track prospects and prospect assignments, facilitate Connect ministry, and some online registrations. It is also the software that will manage our preschool security check-in when the new preschool facility is open.

But the reason I'm praying for Scott and Heather this morning is not just the trip to Dallas. This Sunday will mark Scott's one ear anniversary of serving as our church administrator. Most of scott's work takes place behind the scenes, but his contribution is invaluable to what we do as a church. Two of our recent successes, the amazing results of the Securing Future Disciples financial campaign and this past Sunday's Mother's Day outreach would not have happened without Scott's help.

So join me in praying for this family. Thank the Lord that both of them and their family are such a blessing to our church.

Pastor Noel

Monday, May 10, 2010

A Real Commitment To Prayer

I just had a conversation with Hui Cha, one of our church members who is spending a few weeks back in her home country of North Korea. I asked her to tell me about the churches there. She talked about their passionate love for the Lord and for their concern for lost people. I asked her what she attributed that to, and she told me that most of the churches had a prayer meeting from 5:00 am to 6:00 am six days a week (everyday but Sunday).

That makes me think...

Would we be willing to do that?

How many people would be there each morning?

Pastor Noel

Sunday, May 9, 2010

A Great Sunday

What a great time of worship we had this morning! We were completely packed out... Probably had nearly 100 visitors in the service... Thirteen babies dedicated... One public profession of faith... Great worship... Great spirit...

I'll comment more later on, but I want to say thanks to everyone who made this happen. We had special teams greeting visitors, we had people make a ton of prospect phone calls this last week, we had people put together gift bags, we had people park in the lot behind the gym to free up spaces in the main lots, and more...

Good team effort today. I am thankful to the Lord for letting us have this special day.

Pastor Noel

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Dead Flies

Ecclesiastes 10:1 (NLT) Dead flies will cause even a bottle of perfume to stink! Yes, an ounce of foolishness can outweigh a pound of wisdom and honor.

Lord, remind me that one hundred right and godly decisions in life, in marriage, and in my family, can be made meaningless with one foolish decision.

Pastor Noel


I just looked over an email the church office sent me last night listing thirteen families who have RSVP'd for baby dedication tomorrow. On top of that I know we already have another half dozen we plan to have dedications for this Summer. On top of that I know of at least three pregnant ladies in the church now.

So, what is my point?

I am so thankful to the Lord and to our church for the pending construction of the new preschool ministry suite. You have been so faithful to give to this. I don't recall off the top of my head what the latest total is, but it will be in the bulletin tomorrow. I do know a few thousand dollars more came in this week and that we are well over $100,000 collected for this project in the last couple of months.

Perfect timing... huh?


I've been praying for the service tomorrow morning. I hope you will join me in this. We are looking for a big crowd and a great opportunity to make an impact in our community.

Pastor Noel

Friday, May 7, 2010

Mother's Day Service

I am looking forward to Sunday. It is Mother's Day, and we are going to turn it up a notch at the church!

One thing we are doing is moving our regular worship time to 9:30. We think this will make it easier for new families to come to worship who may have Mother's Day plans that would preclude them from the 10:45 service.

We are also having a very special parent/child dedication time in the service for both families in our church and families in our community. We have tried to contact all of the families in our community who have had babies in the last year. Many of those who do not have a church home have RSVP'd to be with us this Sunday.

It's going to be a good day. Pray that the Spirit of God is encountered in our service in a powerful way as we worship the Lord and preach His word.

Glad I belong to Him,
Pastor Noel

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

AWANA Awards Night II

The Awards Ceremony was great. Seeing so many kids being recognized for their hard work was really exciting. I loved seeing so many of the kids who come on the bus being recognized for their achievement.

The youth praise band led us in worship. One of the songs they sang was unfamiliar to me, but I saw how the kids were worshipping and I remembered that the point isn't to pick songs I enjoy, it is to encourage others to worship. I smiled and tried my best to learn the new song.

My hat's off to all of the dedicated workers and especially to Cheryl Wyrick, our leader, who, by the way skipped out on her daughter's labor to be with the kids tonight!

Pastor Noel

AWANA Awards Night

Tonight at 6:00 we will host our seventeenth AWANA Awards Night. This is an important night for a number of reasons...

-- It gives us a chance to honor a whole bunch of kids, many of whom have done a remarkable job learning Bible verses in this last year.

-- It gives us a chance to meet and thank the parents who have supported their kids in a this endeavor this year.

-- It gives us a chance to say thanks for the dozens and dozens of AWANA workers who have faithfully served week by week.

-- It serves as a reminder that our church does not exist just to make those of us who have been around a while feel comfortable. No! We exist to reach children, and youth, and unreached families in our community. That is the best way we can please the Lord and show His love. May our church never loose sight of our purpose!

If you're free, join us tonight at 6:00... It will be a good night.

Pastor Noel

Location:AWANA Awards Night

Upcoming Messages

Today is a study day. As I do most Wednesdays, I will spend my time today studying and preparing for upcoming messages. Other concerns and issues can wait until Thursday. On Wednesdays I hunker down in an office I built in my basement and just study. I have counseling appointments on Wednesday evenings, usually several. Today I have only two, with AWANA Awards night in between.

My upcoming Sunday morning message, a Mother's Day message, will focus primarily from Genesis 41 as we look at the dream Joseph interpreted for the Pharoah. I'll blog more on this later.

I'm also working on our next Sunday night Bible Study Series. The working title is "You Have Never Read The Bible: A Surprising Approach To How To Study Your Bible." Obviously the title needs some work. This series will last three weeks and it will begin Sunday evening, May 23. I would love to have the notebooks written by the end of the day so Carla could begin to put them together, but I doubt I'll get that far.

Well, time to begin...

Glad I Belong To Him,
Pastor Noel

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Date Night

Tap dance practice was canceled tonight and my kid's Ohio 'grandparents' asked last night if they could have the girls overnight, so a free night with the wife!

We just finished up chores, piano lessons, and church work... About to fire up the grill...


Attention Men

Below is an email I sent to the men in our church and community today. if you would like to be a part of this or any other Connect Group this summer, you can register online at


Dear Men,

This Summer semester, I will be leading a Men's Connect Group on Tuesday mornings at 7:00 a.m. focusing on the life of Joseph in the Old Testament.

As men, we can learn much from Joseph. He faced many of the same issues we face. As leaders in our families, our careers, and our church, we need to know what Joseph has to say. Take a look at a list of some of the things Joseph faced in his life...

Rejection by his peers...
Sexual temptation...
Career failures...
Career successes...
Oportunities to get revenge...
Family issues...

So we will take 15 weeks this Summer beginning on Tuesday, May 25. We will immerse ourselves as deeply into Joseph's life as we can. We will help each other see how the lessons we learn can make a real difference in our lives. It's going to be a great study.

I know many of you will be traveling some through the summer and you know today that you will not be able to make all fifteen Tuesdays. That's OK. If you have an interest, still sign up. Let's help each other find the help we need from the Lord and His Word this summer.

To register for this group you can go to our website (, register at church by completing a registration card, or by simply replying to this email.

I look forward to having many of you in my group.

Pastor Noel


~~ Pass this email around. The class is open to any men who are interested in coming.

Early Morning Meeting

I'm looking forward to an early morning meeting today with a couple of men in our church.

Matt Parker owner of Front Door Strategies, a company that helps conservative political candidates around the country get their message out, has agreed to lead our First Impressions and Greeters ministries.

Brian Haught, who is responsible for the print and online publicity for a chain of jewelry stores, has agreed to help us with brochures and other print publicity.

It is encouraging to see godly men like these find ways to leverage their professional skills for the Kingdom of God!

Glad I belong to Him,
Pastor Noel

Monday, May 3, 2010

Interesting Day

There have been no shortages of interesting days lately. Frankly, I wouldn't mind a good, long, boring, uneventful day. Well, the Lord is in control... No doubt.

One of the biggest things going on around the church this week is preparation for the next semester or small groups (Connect Ministry). Sign-ups are coming along, but we are still looking for a number of new people to sign-up in the next two weeks.

Last Sunday Ken and Denise Tobin pulled me aside. (They are one of the middle aged couples we've recently baptized.) They told me that it was our new semester strategy for Connect Ministry that finally got them to transition from worship attenders to being involved in small groups. It was only a few weeks after being in a small group (they were in Greg Burns' group) that they came to see me about their salvation. I had the wonderful privilege of leading them to the Lord.

There are more stories like that to tell about each Connect Ministry semester we've had so far. I'm praying for more and more of our worship attenders to take the step this semester.


On another note, didn't Julia George do a great job leading us in special music this past Sunday. It was neat seeing her sing while her dad played the drums and her brother played the guitar. We have some talented people in our church.


Also thanks for the calls, emails, and words of encouragement many of you shared Sunday afternoon and Sunday night. It means more than you know.

Glad to belong to the Lord,
Pastor Noel