God is Good… is a new series on the good news of Jesus from Paul’s letter to the Colossians. It is interesting how much we have in common with the Colossians. As Paul shares the gospel with them, we too are invited into the same good news. And who doesn’t need good news?
This week we see how God saves us from too much separation and too much striving in our lives. It’s about receiving grace and peace…Colossians 1:1-2
(With some key insights from my friend, David Housholder)
Open Arms Pregnancy Clinic is one of the outside ministries LIFEhouse supports with our offering benevolence dollars. This non-profit ministry is local and brings such a wonderful service to our local community.
Open Arms offers these professional services at no cost:
- Medical Grade Urine Pregnancy Testing
- Ultrasound to Confirm Pregnancy
- Pregnancy Options Information
- Pregnancy and Parenting Skills Classes
- Support For Men and Families
- After-Abortion Support
One of their main fundraisers each year is a walk-a-thon to raise funds and awareness in the community. This year the Walk for Life will begin and end at LIFEhouse. The walk will take place from LIFEhouse to the Open Arms offices at 9535 Reseda Boulevard and back.
From their website:
“The Walk for Life is a peaceful, positive event giving people a way to apply their pro-life convictions, raise support and increase awareness in our community.
During the walk,there will be an interactive educational experience to help you understand the situations and emotions our clients are facing and how Open Arms helps them.
For those who are unable to do the walk portion of the event, there will be a gentle fitness class offered.
After the walkers return, we’ll enjoy a burger lunch (available for purchase at the event for $7) and we’ll have lots of fun activities for the kids.”
You are invited to support and participate in this great event!
LSS had their annual breakfast at LIFEhouse this year. It was a great event and the highlight for us was…LSS named Beth Yaros their volunteer of the year! Beth does just about anything around the LSS site, volunteering four days a week! Just as she serves in her other ministries, Beth shines at LSS…
Glory to God for all he does through our sister, Beth!
Sunday School Christmas Program Sunday December 11@ 10 a.m.
Preschool Christmas Program Thursday December 15@ 7 p.m.
Christmas Concert and Rob’s new CD Release Party Saturday December 17@ 7 p.m.
Musical Christmas Worship Sunday December 18@ 10 a.m.
Christmas Eve Candlelight Communion Worship Saturday, December 24 @ 5:00 p.m.
No Worship service on Christmas Day
Christmas Dinner for those in need Sunday, December 25 @ 2 p.m.
Christmas Toys are also in great need again this year. We served 300 kids last year. We have emptied all of our storage, especially for 9-12 year old boys and girls! Please help us bring fun and laughter to the children this year.
Again a huge thank you to Canoga Park Lutheran for the use of their church space for the event on Dec 10th. We are looking forward to working with the Boy Scouts Troop 474 as they are again helping as Santa’s elves. Temple Or Ami, Calabasas, will be providing the children’s activities.
*For all Donations of Money for these Holiday Programs please put “Holidays” on the memo line.
We need all GIFTS by 12/5/16
Deliver to the Office – Mon – Friday 9 am through 3pm OR
Sundays 12-2 pm on Nov 20, 27th and Dec 4th. Office Times
For Clients – We are Open Tuesday through Friday 10 am-11:45 am and 1 pm-2:45 pm
Donation Drop Off – Monday through Friday 9 am-3 pm
The Office will be closed:
November 24-25th Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving Nov 28th Monday for Staff Team Building
December 26, 27, 29 and 30th for the Christmas Holiday
Lifehouse will once again hosting a Christmas dinner for those in need. Last year we served over 100 guests! Set up will begin at 10:00am and we serve dinner at 2:00pm. We will need help with set up, serving and clean up. We also need prepared food donated. You may bring non-perishables at any time and perishables on Christmas Eve or on Christmas morning. Please have food cooked, sliced (if needed) and ready to either reheat or serve in disposable containers. A sign up will be posted soon. If you are unable to donate food items monetary donations are accepted, please be sure to mark it Christmas Dinner. Please see Mike or Debee Jusko or Mary Lewallen should you have any questions.
Ash Wednesday is a meaningful day in the life of Christians everywhere. This day which starts the season of Lent is well-receive by those who participate. There are few things that people are more involved in when it comes to living out Christian faith compared to past generations. One such thing is Ash Wednesday.
Ash Wednesday is becoming more popular, partially because it connects a very mysterious ancient ritual in the midst of today’s world. While Ash Wednesday has been commemorated for over a thousand years, it is only recently that Christian groups have discovered its meaning beyond, Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Episcopalian, and Lutheran. I certainly experienced this last week. I reflect on my day.
We began in Preschool, with the children learning that we are created out of the same stuff as other parts of creation. We are brought alive by God breathing his Spirit into us. Experiencing the imposition of ashes was quite natural for this age who are used to dust and dirt and learning God formed us like they make Play-Doh figures!
Then, we had Ash Wednesday worship at Prime Time. I placed ashes on some foreheads that I have memorized over decades. As we get older, the words, “…and to dust you shall return” take on greater and greater significance. Also, ashes for our granddaughter Kaylee, and ashes for the first time in a week of firsts for newly baptized Elise.
Next, ashes for those friends who couldn’t be at worship due to illness or hospitalization. Significant to know we are never alone in the Christian community.
Then it was on to my weekly Bible study at the Better Living halfway house for the recently homeless. I taught on Ash Wednesday and this became very meaningful to some of my friends there who had never experienced the ashes before. Even though they are not unfamiliar with dust and dirt, the ash cross takes on a new significance remembering God brings new life out of the ashes.
Worship again at LIFEhouse in the evening as we prayed for our friends who were having surgery or recovering. A reminder for all of our dependence on God.
Finally, closing the day at the hospital once again, a brief Ash Wednesday observance for several LIFEhouse folks who weren’t able to make the service as they were keeping vigil during our friend’s surgery at Holy Cross. The chaplain graciously let us close the evening in the chapel.
Lent is here and the significance of Ash Wednesday is not lost on us as we remember, reexamine, and renew our dependence on Jesus and his gift of himself.
- They meet together for worship at the Temple.
- They meet in homes to all process the same teaching they are learning.
- They enjoy food.
- They build friendships.
- They pray for each other.
- Together, they connect with the neighbors.
- We meet together with 6-12 people once a week for an hour and a half.
- We eat snacks and have a time to catch up.
- Everyone in the lifeHOUSE takes turns answering the same two questions about the teaching for the week.
- The teaching will come from PD’s book, Reboot: 70 Life Lessons with Dallas Willard. Each week we will read 10 life lessons from the book. A good way to do this is a daily weekday rhythm of reading two lessons a day, M-F, during a quiet time you spend with God. On Sundays, PD will also give a brief summary of the 10 lessons that are for that coming week- Reboot Time.
- What’s the one thing that I sense God is pointing out to me from the reading and reflection I did? (What is God saying to me?)
- What am I going to do about what I am perceiving from God? (What am I going to do about it?)
- After everyone shares, we pray for each other about what we are going to do about what we heard, and we end the time praying one-on-one with other personal prayer matters.
- Each lifeHOUSE will choose to do one simple thing together to bless the neighbors of the host home’s neighborhood. We have plenty of suggestions that you will find helpful, but you can choose anything that brings God’s blessing and joy to the neighbors.
The church council has worked with LSS’s Homeless 2 Home program and A Better Living organization to provide housing for four homeless people that have been staying on our church grounds. Now that we have shelter for Jody, Jill, Lynn, and Matt, we continues to work with them until they are totally self-reliant. If you would like to know more, be involved, or would like to donate money to this homeless ministry, please contact one of the church council members. Before you make a decision, please read the below bible verses. It is hard to find people closer to us that are in need, than the homeless that are leaning against our church doors.
Proverbs 19:17 “Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.”
James 2:14-17 “What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.”