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Last Week's Focus

April 16, 2017

Easter Sunday

Our great God does nothing that is not super-extraordinary! Cosmic, of cosmic proportions. Everyone and everything He touches is profoundly, radically and gigantically impacted in some way. He loves to make grand entrances, demonstrating the power of His might in stunning, earth-shattering, reality-rocking ways. Consider the parting of the Red Sea, the walls of Jericho collapsing, and Pentecost. On the night Jesus was born to usher in the new covenant of grace, an immeasurable multitude of the heavenly host filled the night sky outside of Bethlehem. Our personal world is rocked to the core when the Holy Spirit makes His amazing grand entrance into our lives.

Today is Easter Sunday. Let’s look at a Holy Week example of God’s cosmic power, and also at an earlier event in Jesus’ life. Matthew 27:51 (ESV) says, “And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom, and the earth shook, and the rocks were split.” Note the word “split.” The Greek verb used here means “to cleave, rend, split, break, divide, tear asunder.” Cosmic. A few words back in this verse is the tearing of the temple curtain. The Greek word used for “torn” is the exact same Greek word in its singular form! It is also used in the other synoptic gospel accounts of the tearing of the temple veil (Mark 15:38, Luke 23:45). There is nothing placid or quiet about the splitting of rocks, and I don’t believe the tearing of the curtain was, either. I believe it was an ear-splitting ripping of cosmic proportions, a violent rending asunder of the sin barrier between us and God that shook all of creation and reverberated throughout the heavens and the earth! Hallelujah!

Let’s look at one additional verse. Describing the descent of the Holy Spirit upon Jesus at His baptism, Mark 1:10 (ESV) tells us, “And when He came up out of the water, immediately He saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit descending on Him like a dove.” Again, the very same Greek word is used here in its plural participle form! What Mark describes is no tranquil parting of the clouds but a thunderous cosmic rending of the heavens as God tore them open and sent His Holy Spirit down upon Jesus. Wow!

Today we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection, and also ours. We were dead in our sins. Now through His death and resurrection, we who know Him personally have been made alive in Christ. God didn’t just make provision for this. He came and took care of it Himself, doing it in such an extraordinarily cosmic way that it rocked all of history, all of humanity, all of the universe, all of heaven and all of hell itself.

Today, as we celebrate Easter, let our praise and worship of King Jesus be as cosmic as our humanity will allow us to muster, and let us lift our hands and hearts and voices and rend the heavens with adoration for our Lord! He is risen indeed!

Tim Savelle


PREPARING FOR SUNDAY MORNING

Sunday Worship at 8:30 and 11:00 a.m.
 The Rev. Bill Curington

LITURGICAL READINGS for April 16, 2017
Acts 10:34-43
Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24
Colossians 3:1-4
John 20:1-18

THANK YOU FOR SILENCING ELECTRONIC DEVICES DURING THE WORSHIP SERVICES.

Our St. James Prayer Ministers will be available at the Altar immediately following the service to pray with anyone desiring prayer. James Lineberger—Head Usher, April, 2017


New Wednesday Night Bible Study! 

Habakkuk “Trusting God When Life Doesn’t Make Sense”
Wednesday, April 12, 19 and 26 - 6:15 pm in Room 220 
Led by Pastor Bill Curington and Glenn Cole

Join us for an exciting three-week study of this minor prophet with a major message: God is just and merciful, even though we may not always understand his ways. 

“...but the righteous shall live by his faith.” Habakkuk 2:4

SAVE THE DATE!

Summer Reading Club—Thursday Nights
May 25-June 29, 6:30-7:30 PM, with visiting afterward
Home of Mary Wallace. The book will be “Uninvited” by Lysa TerKeurst, available at Lifeway, Amazon, Christianbooks.com and Barnes and Noble. Please get your own copy of the book.

ANNUAL CONFERENCE IN ATHENS AGAIN

The North Georgia United Methodist Annual Conference will be held at the Classic Center on Tuesday through Thursday, June 13-15, when about 2,500 delegates, ministers, and guests will descend on Athens. Volunteers are again needed to register,  greet, and provide hospitality to them. A 5K Run and Blood Drive also will be held during that week. If you would like to serve in any way, get a volunteer form from the church office as soon as possible. For more information, please contact Marlene Bryan at marlenebryan@yahoo.com or 706-548-1016.

Looking to Make St. James Your Church Home?

If you are considering joining St. James and making this congregation your church home, please contact our Executive Minister, Glenn Cole, to find out the next steps into membership. You can reach Glenn at the church office at 706-548-1680 or by email at gcole@sjumc.org, or meet him at the front of the sanctuary after any of our worship services.

Men’s Spring “WATCH” Conference - April 29 (9:00 am—2:00 pm) 

St. James UMC Sanctuary
Speakers: Lloyd Craft, Ben Slaboda & Barron McCune
Cost $20 (includes t-shirt and lunch)
Deadline for signing up will be this Monday, April 17th. To sign up online, click here.

Spring Yard Sale for Missions!

Our annual yard sale to benefit international missions will be Saturday, May 6. As you begin your Spring cleaning, we’ll take those items you would like to donate off your hands! You can drop them off at the church on Friday, May 5, or you can make arrangements to have large items picked up at your house. Contact Dave Himmelsbach at dshimmels@charter.net for more information.

Just a reminder…..

to bring your fresh-cut flowers from your yard to cover our cross out in front of the church on Easter Sunday morning.

Thank You

to everyone who helped make the St. James Easter Egg Hunt so great! Thank you to everyone who contributed candy and toys, and to everyone who came out and helped. We had a fun time! Happy Easter!


WEDNESDAY NIGHT OPPORTUNITIES

  • FELLOWSHIP MEAL, 5:30 p.m. (FH) 
  • Menu for WEDNESDAY, April 19
    Chicken Strips, Au gratin Potatoes, Butter Beans, Salad, Rolls, Brownies
  • Cost: $5.00 (kids under 12 eat free)
  • We need your dinner reservation by Monday, April 10 (11 a.m.) To make reservations:
    [1] call the church office (706-548-1680) and leave message on voice mail;
    [2] email mswift@sjumc.org; or,
    [3] note number of children & adults by your name on Sunday’s attendance sheets
  • Bible Studies
    • 5:45-7:30 P.M. — Healing and Deliverance Prayer Class (Rm. 219)
    • 6:15-7:30 P.M. — Habakkuk Bible Study (Rm. 220)
  • Youth Ministry
    • 6:00-7:30 P.M. — “WednesdayInTheWord” Middle and High School Bible Study (The Jimmy)
  • Music Ministry
    • There will be no choir rehearsal this week.

 

PRAYER REQUESTS

Faye Boyd, Marlene Bryan, Pastor Artur Pold, Amie Arnold, Bette Daniels, Phil Sherman, Laura Beck, Katherine Wolf, Collin Jarrett, Andy Hassell, Quinn Daly, Sally Stowers, Anna May Cobb

SERVING IN THE MILITARY

Corp. Shay Jennings, Major Brett Thomas, Pvt. Andrew Bryant, 2nd Lt. Wesley M. Hutto, Maj. Nathaniel Chittick

LOOKING AHEAD!

  • April 16—Easter Worship Service—8:30 and 11:00 am
  • April 29—Men’s Mini Conference—9:00 am-2:00 pm
  • May 6—Missions Yard Sale—8:00 am-noon

Did you miss a Sunday?

Pastor Bill’s sermons are available for download on our Teachings page.


Attendance 



April 9, 2017
Sunday School


150
Worship (8:30)


62
Worship (11:00)


189
Total Worship


251







 Offering
General/Operating Fund Offering


$18,531
General/Operating Fund Offering (YTD)


$230,857

Have you remembered St. James in your will?


The Worship of God

8:30 and 11:00 a.m.

Easter Day April 16, 2017

WE GATHER TO ACCLAIM HIM

PRE-SERVICE MUSIC

PRELUDE
The Strife is O’er
LaMurl Morris, piano and Bill Emerson, organ

GATHERING FOR WORSHIP
(8:30) The Strife Is O’er
(11:00) I Will Rise

GREETING TIME
Glenn Cole

WE WORSHIP HIM WITH PRAISE, PRAYER, & GIVING

HYMN NO. 302
Christ the Lord Is Risen Today
Congregation and Choir

WELCOME AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Glenn Cole and Kin McKinnon

OFFERTORY
Come, You Faithful Raise the Strain
LaMurl Morris, piano and Bill Emerson, organ

DOXOLOGY
Holy, holy, Holy! Lord God Almighty!
Early in the morning our song shall rise to thee.
Holy, holy, holy! Merciful and mighty,
God in three persons, blessed Trinity!

READING OF THE WORD
Acts 10:34-43 (NIV)
Glenn Cole and Kin McKinnon

AFFIRMATION OF FAITH #881 THE APOSTLES’ CREED

PRAISE SONGS (11:00)

MORNING PRAYER
LaMurl Morris

(11:00) Children may be dismissed to Children’s Church in Room 103. Pre-K (4 years old by Sept. 1, 2016) through 3rd Grade. 

WORSHIP IN MUSIC
Joy In the Morning
St. James Choir

WE HEAR HIS WORD 

SCRIPTURE
Matthew 28:1-10 (NIV)

SERMON
“Why Easter Matters”
The Rev. Bill Curington

OUR RESPONSE

HYMN NO. 310
He Lives

SENDING FORTH
Glenn Cole

HYMN NO. 327
(8:30) Crown Him With Many Crowns
HALLELUJAH CHORUS (11:00) Please refer to handout.

POSTLUDE
Thine Be the Glory-JUDAS MACCABEUS
LaMurl Morris

Altar Color for Sunday, April 16—White



 

WEEKLY ACTIVITIES AT ST. JAMES

  • Sunday, April 16
    • Worship Services at 8:30 and 11:00 a.m.
       8:30 a.m. Worship (Sanct.)
       9:45 a.m. Sunday School
       11:00 a.m. Worship (Sanct.)
    • 5:00 p.m. St. Thomas Anglican Church (Sanct.)
  • Monday, April 17
    • (Office closed for Easter Holiday)
  • Tuesday, April 18
    • 7:30 a.m. Men’s Bible Study (Rm. 220)
    • 9:45 a.m. Women’s Bible Study (Rm. 220)
    • 6:30 p.m. Men’s Ministry (The Jimmy)
  • Wednesday, April 19
    • 5:45 p.m. RTF Prayer Class (Rm. 219)
    • 6:00 p.m. WednesdayInTheWord (The Jimmy)
    • 6:15 p.m. Habakkuk Bible Study (Rm. 220)
  • Thursday, April 20
  • Friday, April 21
    • 8:00 a.m. Men’s Prayer Group (Sanctuary)
    • 6:30 p.m. Athens SHARE (The Jimmy)
    • 8:00 p.m. Guys/Girls Lock-In (FH & The Jimmy)
  • Saturday, April 22

 

Key
 FH = Fellowship Hall
 Sanct = Sanctuary
 The Jimmy = House beside St. James (across parking lot)

 

THE LIGHT WEEKLY ACTIVITIES

  • Sunday, April 16
    • 10:30 a.m. Sunday School
    • 11:30 a.m. Worship Service

 

Focus

Our weekly newsletter is called FOCUS, because we believe that our focus should be on Jesus. It's our hope that you will be able to find out more about the ministries and activities going on at St. James, and also that you will be able to tell more about the heart of who we are: a congregation that wants to know more about Jesus, that wants to be connected and in fellowship with each other, and that has a definite calling to serve, in both the local and global communities.

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April 23, 2017
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