March 20, 2024

Dear Friends,

We have this clock.

It’s been in our family for as long as I can remember. Since before I was born, I think. It’s a wind up clock that sits on the mantle over the fireplace and ticks and tocks constantly. It bongs on the hour and dings on the half hour. And every week, I have to wind it or it stops.

Four years ago, when life shut down for all of us and we started looking around the house for the home maintenance projects we’d been putting off, I decided to take the clock to have it cleaned and oiled. It was working just fine at the time, but it had been more than a decade since anyone had touched the inside of the clock. So I decided the time was right for some preventive care.

Apparently everyone else in town had the same idea. The guy who works on antique clocks (the only guy I know in town) had a backlog a couple of months long. No worries. It’s not like we didn’t have any other way to keep track of time.

Weeks later, the repair shop called and told me the clock was ready. In good working order. I picked it up and brought it home.

Ever since then, I’ve had a devil of a time trying to get the clock to keep time. I don’t know what the repair man did, but my clock that always kept perfect time now gains or loses a few minutes almost every day. I’ve tried adjusting the clock using the regulating square on the front face, but no matter how carefully I try to adjust it, the clock either slows down or speeds up more than I intend for it to.

So every day or so, I have to manually adjust the clock. I move the hands to show the correct time. By the next day, I can tell if the clock is running too fast or to slow.

My clock reminds me of me. My life is perpetually in need of being spiritually readjusted and reset. I depend on the regular spiritual rhythms of life to keep me wound up and functioning. Time throughout the week spend in reading and studying God’s word. Time spent in prayer. Fellowship with other believers. Corporate worship. These are the rhythms that energize me spiritually and keep me running.

And like my clock, my life has to be recalibrated day after day. My clock runs fast or slow. I run hot or cold. I can be at peace one minute and anxious the next. Content or dissatisfied. Walking by the Spirit or following my own appetites.

In the same way that I have to reset my clock regularly, several times throughout the week, I also have to reset my heart regularly. It can easily slip. As the hymnwriter acknowledge, I am prone to wander. Regular recalibration is required if I’m going to function as designed.

I’ve become accustomed over the past few years to check my watch when I hear our mantle clock chime on the hour. Is the clock running fast or slow this week? Is it time for an adjustment? Does it need to be reset?

It’s also a good prompt for me to check my heart at the same time. Am I functioning as God intends? Is the fruit of the Spirit present in my life? Or do I need a recalibration?

The Bible tells us we are to keep watch over our hearts (Proverbs 4:23). We are to regularly reset our minds on eternal things (Colossians 3:2). Our minds have to be continually renewed and realigned (Romans 12:2). My spiritual life, like my mantle clock, doesn’t come with a “set it and forget it” function.

Of course, the watch I’m wearing is different. It keeps perfect time. It even resets itself when I go from one time zone to another or when daylight savings time rolls around. As long as I keep it charged up, I don’t have to think about making any regular adjustments.

There is a day ahead for me when my life will be in perfect sync with the One who created me. No adjustments will be necessary. I’m looking forward to that day with great anticipation.

Until then, I’ll keep rewinding and resetting.

Time for a good Spring Cleaning! Time for a power washing party!

This Saturday you’re invited to help with a spring cleaning of the exterior and grounds of our church property. With the upcoming Resurrection Rally and the Eclipse Party, we want our facility to look its best and be safe for visitors and our kids.

So this Saturday, March 23, we’ll rendezvous at church at 8:00 AM to let the cleaning begin! The party goes until everything is sparkly clean!

Here’s what we’ll be doing:Power washing and gentle scrubbing of the building exteriorPower wash walkways as neededWindows cleanedPlayground area sanitizationWeeding the playground mulchCleaning the dumpster area.And here’s what we need:Power washersPower washer soap for exterior sidingDisinfecting cleaner for playground equipmentWindow washing equipment and cleanerHoses (100 ft or longer preferred) Ladders (24ft or higher)Rakes and weeding equipmentQuestions about the cleaning day? Text Deacon Jeff Fehlberg at 501-291-3149 and he’ll get right back to you.

Remember, it’s a party! See you bright and early on Saturday!

We all have about three and a half weeks to get our tax returns completed and filed.

April 15 is also the deadline we’ve set to determine if we can move forward with the investigation phase for a possible building project for the church. We think it’s time to begin investigating what might be involved in expanding our facility and our parking lot (This past Sunday, we had empty spots in our parking lot. I expect on Easter, some of us may have to park our cars along David O Dodd).

If we’re going to take this step to begin the investigation, we need to raise $15 between now and April 15. Which is perfect, because some of you are going to get a tax refund. You could donate all or part of that refund to help with the cost of the project!

As I’ve shared with you, we’re committing to a building program at this point. But we think it would be wise for us to explore what adding space might mean for us. How could the space be best utilized? How long would it take to build? And what would it cost?

Please continue to pray for God’s guidance and for His provision for this project. Pray that we will act in wisdom and in faith. Pray that God will provide the funds we need for this first phase of the project. And pray that once it’s clear whether or not we should move ahead, God will provide for the cost of the project itself.

If you’d like to give now toward this effort, click here to make an online gift, and use the pull down menu to indicate you’d like your money to go to the building project. Or better yet, write a personal check and add the word “building” in the memo line.

We begin our Easter weekend activities next Friday night, March 29, with our Good Friday service at church at 7:00 pm. This worship service sets the tone for the whole weekend for us.

On Saturday, we’ll have families with children gathering at 2:00 PM for our annual Resurrection Rally and Easter egg hunt. It’s a great time for children to have fun together and to hear the story of the death and resurrection of Jesus.

Our regular Sunday worship service happens at 10:00 AM Easter morning, with a focus on what the Bible means when it tells us that we can share in Jesus’ resurrection.

I hope you’ve already invited friends you know who don’t have a church home to join you for one or more of these events.

We still have a limited supply of my new Easter book that you could purchase inexpensively and give to a friend, along with an invitation card welcoming them to join us for Easter activities.

Let’s be bold this Easter. Let’s take advantage of the opportunity to welcome people into our church where they can hear the best news ever.

Have you signed up yet for the Great Eclipse Event?
We’ll be ordering our supply of Eclipse viewing glasses early next week. If you want us to have glasses ready for you when you join us for our eclipse party, we need to know you’re planning to attend.

Click here and let us know if you’ll be joining us. For $5 you’ll get glasses, a couple of hot dogs, a bag of chips and bottle of water. And you’ll be able to experience the total eclipse with friends.

Excitement is building for our Date Night Dinner!

Friday, April 12, we’re converting our worship center into a gourmet restaurant. We’ll be serving Beef Tenderloin, along with potatoes and veggies (or a vegetarian plate, upon request). We’ll have some date night fun activities. And we’ll take some time to hear about the best practices that help couples cultivate strong, healthy marriages.

If you’ve not already made your reservations, we have limited space still available. Click here to register. The cost is $40 per couple. And if you bring a couple with you as your guests – folks who don’t attend Redeemer currently – and the cost for them is half price! Only $20 per couple!

Ladies. Time to go ahead and sign up now for a special weekend Stay-treat!

Think “retreat”, BUT you don’t have to pack a bag or spend the night away from home!

Join with other women for a sweet time of fellowship, food, and feasting on God’s Word, as we study and discuss Titus 2.

Dinner will be served. The cost to cover food and materials for the Stay-treat is $40. Register now by clicking here.

Our Palm Sunday worship service kicks off this week with a choir of children singing In Christ Alone. Make sure you arrive on time so you don’t miss it!

Then, we’ll continue our ongoing study of the letters Jesus wrote to the seven churches in Asia Minor, looking this week at promises Jesus makes to the faithful believers who are part of the church in Philadelphia. We’ll see how these believers who, according to Jesus, had little power end up as pillars in God’s eternal temple.

See you in church.

Soli Deo Gloria!
Pastor Bob

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