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April Highlights

Good Sam Happenings
  * April 3 Wednesday Church Night
      5:00 pm Eat, Play and Learn Fellowship
      5:30 pm Soup and Bread Fellowship
      6:30 pm Evening Worship (Vespers)
      7:00 pm Class on S.H.A.P.E. 
April 7  [Sunday Theme]  Toward the New Thing that God is Doing
    * April 10 Wednesday Church Night (See Schedule above)
April 14  [Palm Sunday Theme] “From Palm to Passion”
    * April 18 Maundy Thursday Service 7 PM
    * April 19 Good Friday Service 7 PM
April 21  [Easter Sunday Theme]  “As Passover Ends, Easter Begins”
* April 21 Easter Brunch following the 9 am Service (Sign Up TODAY)
April 28 [Sunday Theme]  “Upper Room Tales”

Congregational Informational Session – April 7th

Hello Good Sam Members and Attenders!

This Sunday, April 7th, council will be holding it’s first quarterly information session immediately after church.  Prior to fellowship, we will take 10 minutes to update you on things that council is working on, building happenings, and budget.  There will be an opportunity for questions and further discussion during coffee and conversation should you chose to dive deeper. For our Sunday School teachers, there will be an opportunity for discussion between 11:30 and Noon.

This is an attempt to keep communications open throughout the year; therefore, if you can, please plan to stay in your seats for just 10 minutes after service and join council during Coffee and Conversations.

We are continually looking for ways to communicate that are helpful and meaningful for you as we journey together in this place. Please let us  know if this is a good way to accomplish that goal.  Your feedback is important.

Blessings,

Gail Wathen

President of Council

March Highlights

Good Sam Happenings

March 3 [Sunday Theme] “Reflecting the Glory of God: Moses, Jesus and Us.”   

    Join us for your Lenten Journey in Faith

  * March 6  Ash Wednesday (beginning of Lent; Imposition of Ashes) 7 pm
 
March 10 [Sunday Theme] “What Are the Through Lines of Faith?
  * March 13 Wednesday Church Night
      5:00 pm Eat, Play and Learn Fellowship (families with little ones)
      5:30 pm Soup and Bread Fellowship (everyone welcome)
      6:30 pm Evening Worship (Vespers)
      7:00 pm Class on S.H.A.P.E. (click here to read more
  * March 16  Chili Cook-Off
 
March 17 [Sunday Theme] “What do You Allow to Move You?”
  * March 20 Wednesday Church Night (See Schedule above) 
 
March 24  [Sunday Theme]  “Learning the Art of Love and Mercy”
  * March 27 Wednesday Church Night (See Schedule above)
 
March 31  [Sunday Theme]  “Applying the Art of Love and Mercy”
 
 *read more in The Grapevine a monthly Publication of Good Sam News
 
 * Spiritual Gifts Inventory (take this survey to explore your giftedness)

Reading and Kids Make for Good Fun

Carvery Elementary participated in Read Across America the last week of February.   It is amazing how focused and enjoyable 1st and 2nd grade kids can be for “Story Time.” 
 
We also got to talk about our favorite activities and things we have in common.  I was able to share how fun it was to have my parents read to me and how much I love to read with my daughters.  There are so many ways to bring light and encouragement to life in our community.  What is your favorite way to make a difference in the world around you?

S.H.A.P.E Small Group Study

Join us March 13 through April 16;
Wednesdays at 7 pm for this engaging study

As we prepare our hearts and minds for Easter, we are excited to take a deep dive into discovering how we are uniquely designed to serve God. This six-week small group study will explore who we are and what our purpose is in the context of loving and serving God.  We are using Pastor Rick Warren’s framework called S.H.A.P.E. We will meet at the church during Church Night on Wednesdays in Lent. Each week, we will study one letter tying it all together in our last session. Join Gail Wathan (Council President) and Christy Hartigan (Certified Life Coach) who are co-facilitating from 7-8pm.   

What does S.H.A.P.E. stand for?

Spiritual Gifts: God-empowered natural tendencies for service.
Heart or Passion: what you love to do and care about most.
Abilities: the natural talents you were born with.
Personality or Style: your unique combination of personality traits.
Experience: the experiences in life that have molded you that you can use to unify the Kingdom.

Why is discovering my S.H.A.P.E. important in the Christian life?

God has created you and molded your life in unique and wonderful ways so that you can experience the joy of helping the Kingdom of God “to come on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10). We do different things to make a living, but we all have the same vocation, or calling, which is to use our talents, abilities, interests, personality, and experience to follow Jesus, to strengthen and unify the Body of the Church, and to make known the mystery of Christ. When we use our abilities for God’s glory, we come to know God’s love more fully and how He accomplishes His work through our lives. Each of us has something unique to contribute in ministry. Knowing our S.H.A.P.E. helps guide us to the right places to invest our time and service. When you serve using your S.H.A.P.E., the love of God more fully exudes from you. and your message to your community and the world is strong and clear. You lean into your purpose serving God through your congregation and your daily lives!

How do I know what my S.H.A.P.E. is?

Taking the S.H.A.P.E. Assessment and discussing results in a safe, fun and trusting small group context will give you an idea of what resonates most with you.  This is about you discovering you! Ask your family and friends what they have seen you demonstrate. Find a ministry area that fits your S.H.A.P.E. and see if you sense God at work. Through this process you will begin the journey of discovering who you are, why you are here, and what you do best!

 

S.H.A.P.E. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): 

How will I know when I’m using my S.H.A.P.E.?

The results of serving with your unique S.H.A.P.E. are both external and internal. You will be more effective and fruitful in ministry as you use the tools God has given you. And, you will experience joy and fulfillment as you serve others.

 What part do Spiritual Gifts play in my S.H.A.P.E.?

Spiritual Gifts are special abilities given by God to be used to minister to others. They are a demonstration that God’s Holy Spirit is working in us, enabling us to do things we could not otherwise do. 

Where does the Bible talk about Spiritual Gifts?

Though the lists vary, each reference indicates that the New Testament writers considered Spiritual Gifts to be an important part of the Christian life. Biblical references are found in I Corinthians 12I Peter 4:9-11Romans 12:3-8, and Ephesians 4:11-13.

1 Corinthians 12:4-11 [NIV]

4There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues,[a] and to still another the interpretation of tongues.[b] 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.

1 Peter 4:9-11 

Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Romans 12:3-8

3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. 4 For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your[a]faith; 7 if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; 8 if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead,[b] do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.

Ephesians 2:10 [NIV]

2 We are God’s Masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so that we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

Ephesians 4:11-12 [NIV]

11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.”

How do I acquire a Spiritual Gift?

The Holy Spirit gives Spiritual Gifts to us. We cannot earn spiritual gifts, nor can we choose them. Spiritual Gifts are given according to God’s unique design and purpose for each of us. Spiritual Gifts are given so that the church has what it needs to spread God’s love to the world. They are not given for the benefit of the individual who receives them, they are given to bring unity to the Body and for the good of God’s Kingdom right here and now.

What part does Heart play in our S.H.A.P.E.?

God has given each of us a unique emotional desire and motivation to make a difference in the world. Although God cares about every need, we instinctively care about some things more than others. When we serve in our area of passion we are effective, energized, and through our passion and commitment we experience joy.

What part do our Abilities play in our S.H.A.P.E.?

Natural talents are given by God to every person. They are the abilities that help us function in the world. Abilities can be indicators of your giftedness but do not necessarily equate to your Spiritual Gifts. Both are God-given. Our natural talents have many applications; Spiritual Gifts are given to carry out God’s purposes.

What part does our Personality Style play in our S.H.A.P.E.?

Our Personality Style reflects the natural preferences we have for how we approach life. It helps you decide what kind of environment you are most comfortable serving in. Are you energized by relationships with people or achieving tasks? Are you a planner or spontaneous in how you organize life?

What part do life Experiences play in our S.H.A.P.E.?

All of us have significant experiences in our lives, amazingly joy-filled and equally heart-breaking, that has helped  make us who we are today. God desires to use these experiences all for his good. Our experiences become valuable tools for ministry as we serve others and expand God’s Kingdom.

Green Eggs and Ham, Good for kids and Good For us!

I enjoy reading to my girls.  We talk and giggle. We snuggle and focus together.  Reading opens worlds in the mind and in our lives. A child who loves and confidently reads on grade level by third grade is far more likely to graduate from High School than a child who cannot (ref).  It is really true that reading and learning to read makes so much possible.  

We have an invitation from Carver Elementary to read to our neighborhood children at School and in the classroom.  The program is called Read Across America.  You can sign up to read as little as ½ hour to a class.  I signed up to read Green Eggs and Ham to a first and then a second grade class on Monday Feb. 25th. Would you be willing to help? This year Read Across America runs from Feb. 25 – March 1st.  Contact Lisa McCoy at Carver to sign up.

What if we could find our neighbors throughout the process of fostering a love of reading among children in our community.  Some families do this naturally and some do not. What a great way to celebrate our children and have fun together. Do you have a favorite children’s book that you would love to share.  Dr. Seuss is a great place to look. I remember having Cat in the Hat read to me as a child. What a great gift to share.

About NEA’s Read Across America

The National Education Association is building a nation of readers through its signature program, NEA’s Read Across America. Now in its 20th year, this year-round program focuses on motivating children and teens to read through events, partnerships, and reading resources.

“You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read with a child.”

February Highlights

Good Sam Happenings

Feb. 3 [Sunday Theme] “Love Attends to the Beloved”
  * Feb. 9, Dinner Dance for all (sponsored by Empty Nesters)
Feb. 10 [Sunday Theme] “In Our Hearts We Receive and Turn to Follow”
  * Feb 17  Welcome of New Members to Good Sam
Feb. 17 [Sunday Theme] “What We Need vs What We Have”
  * Feb. 17-24     WARM comes to Good Sam
Feb. 24  [Sunday Theme] “The Heart From Which Joseph Looks Upon His Brothers”
  *read more in The Grapevine a monthly Publication of Good Sam News
  * Finding Your Spiritual Gifts: Spiritual Gifts Inventory 

January Highlights

Good Sam Happenings

    *read more in The Grapevine a monthly Publication of Good Sam News

Jan. 6 [Sunday Theme] “We Too Have A Star to Guide Us”

   ◊ Epiphany Parade, come get an Epiphany Star, Join us for Getting to Know Good Sam at 10:30 am

Jan. 13 [Sunday Theme] “Why Do You Like to Shower (bathe)?”

   Jan. 19 ◊ Chili Cook-off is being rescheduled for March 16, 4 pm

Jan. 20  [Sunday Theme] “The Surprising Extravagance of God”

Jan. 27  [Sunday Theme] “Discovering and Rediscovering the Living Word of God”

 

December Highlights

Good Sam Happenings

Dec. 2 [Sunday Theme] “Fulfillment of the Promise”

(Congregational Annual Meeting @ 10:30 am in the Sanctuary)

◊ Dec. 5 Wednesday Advent Church Night

4:30 pm Eat and Play Fellowship

                5:30 pm Advent Potluck

                6:30 pm Advent Vespers

                7:00 pm Discuss Together “Lasting Impact” Intro and Chapters 3-4

Dec. 9 [Sunday Theme] “Stir Up Our Hearts”

◊ Dec. 12 Wednesday Advent Church Night (see schedule above)

Dec. 16  [Sunday Theme]Sunday School Christmas Pageant”

◊  Dec. 19 Wednesday Advent Church Night (see schedule above)

Dec. 23  [Sunday Theme] “Faithful Lives Always Give Birth to God’s Activity”

◊Dec. 24 Christmas Eve Services

5:00 pm Family Friendly Christmas Eve Service

8:00 pm Traditional Christmas Eve Service

Dec. 30  [Sunday Theme] “Lessons and Carols for Christmas”

November Highlights

Good Sam Happenings

Nov. 4 [Sunday Theme] “Small is Big” Rev. Phil Hirsch Assistant to the Bishop of the Metro DC Synod

◊ Nov. 4 Consecration Sunday Brunch 10:15 am (RSVP Here)  Theme:  “Giving and Growing in Faith

Nov. 11 [Sunday Theme] “Living in the Hands of God” also Honoring Our Veterans

Nov. 18  [Sunday Theme] “Like a New Day, Dawning”

◊  Nov. 21 Thanksgiving Meal at Good Sam 5:30 pm (potluck) with a short worship service at 7 pm.

Nov. 25  [Sunday Theme] “Knowing vs Understanding:  a Revelation”

◊ Nov. 28  Wednesday Church Night is back this Advent Season

                4:30 pm Eat and Play Fellowship

                5:30 pm Advent Potluck

                6:30 pm Advent Vespers

                7:00 pm Discuss Together “Lasting Impact” Intro and Chapters 1-2

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