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Take Courage, Have Hope, and Trust God

In a sermon a couple of weeks ago, I used the image of an earthquake as a metaphor for the time in which we are living. All of the cultural changes we are experiencing along with the light speed advancement of technology has left us on ground that is shifting under us. We try to hold onto something that will help us keep our footing; and yet even those once trusted foundations are shaking as the ground rises and falls under everything. In this circumstance, it certainly is easy to feel unsteady in the present, fearful of the future, and nostalgic for a time before the foundations shifted.

The returning Israelite exiles from Babylon faced a similar situation. The nation and homeland they left 50 years previously did not resemble the desolate land they returned to. The temple was destroyed, the land barely able to grow crops, and those who had been left behind did not welcome them. As the returning exiles began to rebuild the temple, they realized that it would never be as magnificent as the former temple. Their uncertain future and unstable present made them long for the past glories of Israel.

The prophet Haggai pointed out that the magnificent temple that they reminisced about was now a crumbled building. The past could not be rebuilt, but the future was in the hands of their God who was not done with them. God would make something greater than just a former building of old. Through the words of Haggai, God encouraged them to take courage and do not fear for God’s spirit abides among them. God was not done with them or the advancement of the Kingdom. In fact God will do even greater things with them and through them.

This is a good word for us as well. Even in the midst of shifting foundations, God’s Spirit is with us. We do not need to fear the present or the future, because God is still active. God is not done with the church in general, our church in particular, and us as individuals. God has great plans for us even in the midst of the cultural and technological quakes we are living through. In the words written by Haggai, may we Take Courage, Have Hope, and Trust that God is not finished!

I encourage you to pray daily for God’s presence to be made manifest in your life and in the life of our congregation as we place our trust in the work of Christ in our midst.

Grace and peace.
Your friend and pastor,
Pastor Lee

Touching Davidson County with Love 2018

It’s that time of year again! TDCWL is celebrating its twelfth year of community service. We will be teaming up with 12-15 other churches to go out and serve those less fortunate than ourselves. We will be offering “soft” projects (singing at nursing homes, making blankets for the Dragonfly House, etc.) and “hard” projects (painting, handicap ramps, yard work, etc.) for you to sign up to assist with on our work day. Please mark your calendars for March 24 as our community work day this year, and watch for our bulletin board to sign up.

Additionally, we are collecting items for two community organizations this year: canned mixed vegetables and canned pasta for Pastor’s Pantry, and baby wipes for DSS Foster Care. . Please bring your donations to the church and leave them in the designated crates in the lobby before March 24.

Should you have any questions, please contact Ann Kiefer or Byron Oswald. Thank you for your support of this community outreach.

Women of the Word, February-March 2018

Women of the Word returns in February, ready to dive into Beth Moore's, "Entrusted," a study of 2 Timothy.

God has entrusted us with the great and mighty gift of the gospel. We must learn to guard what God has entrusted to us, further His kingdom by sharing Christ with others, and pour into future generations just as Paul once mentored Timothy. Because in this journey of joy and hardship, we need each other to stay the course and live lives of faithfulness.

All ladies are invited to join us beginning Monday, February 5, 6:30-8:30 PM or Tuesday, February 6, 9:15-11:15 AM, as we undertake this six-week journey of faith together. Please bring a Bible and a pen. We encourage you to invite friends to join you!

In the event of inclement weather, both sessions will begin the following week (February 12 and 13, respectively). If you have a question about the starting date, please contact the church office (office@fpclexnc.com or 336.248.2140) or return here to our website. Other questions about the study may be directed to Katherine Team (336.242.4019) or Ann McMurray (336.239.4042).

God Comes....

As we consider the witness of the Bible, we see that God comes to God’s people in unexpected ways and at unexpected times. Moses was tending sheep when he met God in a burning bush. Samuel was asleep when he heard the voice of God call out his name. The shepherds preparing for a night’s rest when they heard from God in the song of the angels. And of course, God came to the world in the person of a helpless baby in the most humble of circumstances.

Advent Family Celebration

We invite you to join us as we celebrate the start of the Advent season!

A Note of Appreciation from Family Services

Even as our work continues in helping to give the Domestic Violence Shelter a "make-over," Family Services has sent our congregation this note of thanks:

To the members of First Presbyterian Church, Lexington:

On behalf of the staff and board of Family Services of Davidson County and the thousands served each year with crisis services and shelter at the Hattie Lee Burgess House, thank you! Thank you for gathering your generous donations of money and supplies for needed improvements at the shelter. Thank you for organizing your youth and adults to help paint, make repairs and do yardwork. Your donations of time, talent and treasure have a direct and significant impact on the lives of the women and children who seek safe shelter with us.

May your church thrive and grow as you share God’s blessings with all you meet.

With gratitude,

Julia Toone
Family Services of Davidson County, Inc.

Chicken Pie & Baked Spaghetti Sale for Missions - Fall 2017

This sale helps us raise extra funds that can go directly and immediately to the local helping agencies we support. It is our hope for this sale to go beyond the membership of the church, so we encourage everyone to invite their neighbors, friends and coworkers to order.

Large chicken pies (which can serve 6-8) are $13.00; orders of 3 or more are $12 each.

Small chicken pies (which can serve 1-2) are $16 for a pack of four pies (must be sold as whole packs).

Baked Spaghetti with Meat Sauce (serves 4-6) is $13.00 per pan; orders of 3 or more are $12 each.

Preschool Butter Braid Fundraiser

Our Preschool is selling Butter Braids through October 25th. Our delivery date is scheduled for Wednesday, November 8th.

This year the following flavors are available: Double Chocolate, Apple, Cinnamon, Strawberry Cream Cheese, Cream Cheese, Blueberry Cream Cheese, Caramel Rolls, and a new savory addition, Four Cheese and Herb. All flavors of Butter Braids are $14.00 with the exception of Double Chocolate and Four Cheese and Herb, which are $15 each.

An order form is located outside of Jeanna's office, or feel free to contact Jane Blackerby at 248-2140 ext. 205 (or by clicking on her name to email) to place your Butter Braid order! Thank you for your continued support of our Preschool.

Homeless Shelter Service Opportunities

Staying Overnight at the Shelter

Volunteers are needed to stay overnight at the Homeless Shelter on the 3rd and 4th Wednesdays of each month. If you would like more information, or if you would like to volunteer, please contact Ann Kiefer. The procedure we follow for these overnight stays is as follows:

6-6:30 PM: Pick up shelter keys from the Lexington Police station       NOTE: A paid staff employee will sign in all residents and perform screenings. This staff person will normally stay until around 10-11 pm and is available if you have any questions.

6-7:00 PM Residents are served meals by volunteers (you can assist, if needed)

6:30-10 PM Volunteer monitors activity; shelter residents have assigned duties and will clean kitchen and dining area. Residents can take “smoke breaks” under your supervision.

10 PM Lights out. All residents return to their rooms and the volunteer locks the doors. NOTE: Volunteer(s) has separate sleeping quarters with two beds (you are welcome to recruit a teammate to volunteer with you).

5:30 AM Volunteer unlocks resident rooms. Residents are assigned to prepare coffee and breakfast for the shelter residents.

5:30-6 AM Residents eat breakfast and perform assigned duties.

6:30 AM All residents leave the shelter. Volunteer returns keys to Lexington Police station.

Overnight Stays Schedule
September 27 - Mike Kiefer
October 18 - Birke McNeill
October 25 - Jeff Davis
November 15 - Walt Rouse
November 22 - Ed Kiefer
December 20 - Chris Brookshire
December 27 - Craig Koontz

- - - - - - -

Shelter Meals

First Presbyterian is responsible for preparing and serving a meal at Crisis Ministry on the third Wednesday of each month. If you or your group would like to volunteer to provide a meal at the shelter, or if you would like more information about volunteering, please contact Jeanna in the church office (via email link above, or call 336-248-2140).

MEAL SCHEDULE
10/18/2017         Young Disciples (YD’s)
11/15/2017         Employees of Mountcastle Insurance
12/20/2017         The Herman & Harman Families
01/17/2018         McMurray Small Group
02/21/2018         Volunteers Needed
03/21/2018         Volunteers Needed
04/18/2018         Volunteers Needed
05/16/2018         Troop 205

We serve the adult side of the shelter, and they are currently averaging 60 to 65 residents at present.

There are no dietary restrictions, and our volunteers are responsible for providing the meal, dessert, and drink.

Dessert does not have to be fancy or homemade; something as simple as prepackaged cookies or snack cakes will do.

Our volunteers do not have to provide paper goods or utensils, but donations of those items are welcome.

The meal should be ready to serve by 6:00-6:30 PM, and the shelter’s residents are responsible for clean up afterwards. Leftovers are saved for lunch the next day.

If a volunteer has a meeting or other obligation that would prevent them from staying to serve the meal, arrangements can be made for the residents to serve the meal themselves.

Hope Heals: Domestic Violence Shelter Project

Family Services of Davidson County is one of the local agencies First Presbyterian has supported in our budget for many years. One focus of Family Services is the running of the Domestic Violence Shelter, which offers a safe space for women and their children on a temporary basis.

The shelter is in need of a “make-over” in order to create an environment where women and their children can live with dignity as they rebuild their lives. Members of our church have come together to help make this a reality. As part of this “make-over” project, we are collecting the items and services listed here. If you are able to donate, please contact Tricia Rouse (to avoid duplicate donations). We can also receive monetary donations and purchase the needed supplies. Please make your checks payable to First Presbyterian Church and note "Domestic Violence Shelter" on the memo line. Monetary donations should be given to Jeanna or left in Alma's mailbox in the work room.

Thank you for your consideration. Please contact Karen, Tricia, or Katherine if you have any questions.

In His Name,
Karen Carrickhoff
Tricia Rouse
Katherine Team

LIST OF NEEDS
Please purchase NEW:
∙ Bath towels, hand towels, and bath cloths
∙ Pots and pans (all sizes)
∙ Toaster oven
∙ Electric can opener
∙ Coffee pot
∙ Blender
∙ Whisk
∙ Large measuring cup
∙ Kitchen scissors
∙ Ice trays
∙ Hand mixer
∙ Mixing bowls
∙ Paring knives
∙ Storage containers for flour, sugar, etc.
∙ Storage containers for leftover food
∙ Small microwave
∙ Monetary donation for chinaware (plates, bowls, etc.)

The following items are needed for the older children’s room (4th-8th graders). These may be gently used items:
∙ Set of Duplo blocks
∙ Sets of small Legos (themed Legos)
∙ Board games suitable for 2nd grade & up
∙ Books suitable for 4th-8th graders
∙ An iPad with a headset

Services that are needed include:
∙ Minor handyman jobs
∙ Cleaning and staining the handicap ramp
∙ Scraping and repainting kitchen cabinets
∙ Yard work
∙ Painting the floor of the outdoor porch
∙ Painting the kitchen with Karen, Tricia, and Katherine

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