“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry….”
As you all know, the last few weeks, we’ve been focusing on what the bible tells us about our words and how God wants us to speak to others (building people up rather than tearing them down with our words). However, talking is only half of communication and what our verse from James reminds us of is that God also cares about how we listen to each other.
“..Everyone should be quick to listen..”
As I consider this verse, I’m reminded that one of the most powerful and meaningful ways that we can serve others is by offering them a listening ear and genuinely attending to their words. This insight led the famous German Pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer to write that all followers of Jesus are called to a ministry of listening. Here’s how he puts it in his classic book, Life Together:
“The first service that one owes to others in the fellowship consists in listening to them. Just as love to God begins with listening to His Word, so the beginning of love for the brethren is learning to listen to them. It is God’s love for us that He not only gives us His Word but also lends us His ear. So it is His work that we do for our brothers when we learn to listen to him.”***
Questions to Consider:
What’s the difference between hearing someone and listening to them?
Why do you think God calls us to be quick to listen?
What can listening accomplish that our words can’t?
Who is someone in your life that you can offer the gift of a listening ear?
***Life Together: The Class Exploration of Faith in Community by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, pg. 97.
Cleaning Kits—Serving Those Affected by Ida
As many of you know, there are still countless individuals, families, and communities who are slowly rebuilding after Hurricane Ida. To serve these neighbors of ours, GNJ is encouraging churches to create cleaning kits that will be distributed to communities in need.
By clicking on the below link, you will find a list of items needed to create a cleaning kit.
If you contribute to this ministry, we ask that you gather as many of these items as you can on the list to ensure that the kits we send in have all of the needed supplies. Sunday, October 24th, will be the deadline to drop off items at the back of the sanctuary.
Youth Group This Sunday
Just recently, our church started a youth group and had our first gathering led by Pastor Chris and Rachel. Our second youth gathering will be this upcoming Sunday at the church from 5:30 to 7:00 pm. We’ll be getting pizza and will have a fun activity followed by a devotional. If you have a middle schooler or teenager who might be interested in joining youth group, you can connect with Pastor Chris or reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
World Communion Sunday
This Sunday, October 3rd, is World Communion Sunday, a time in which we celebrate our unity and connection with Christians across the world. You can learn more about this special day in the Christian calendar by watching this insightful and entertaining video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uuQFOjhPQVI
Food Drive for Flemington Food Pantry
Thank you to everyone who donated food for our Food Drive. Together, we were able to gather 292 pounds of food!
The Choir and Bell Choir rehearsals are on Wednesdays in the choir room, with Bell Choir at 4:30-5:30 and Choir at 5:45-7:00. Feeling unsure about joining? Feel free to sit in on a rehearsal any time before deciding. All are welcome – no experience required!
In-person Sunday School has resumed during our church services. If you would like to register your child in our Sunday School program, please fill out a registration form and turn it in. If you need a form, you can email Gretchen at email@example.com.
Sharing Prayer Requests
If you have a prayer request, you can fill out a prayer card in the back of the sanctuary or email our Office Manager, Gretchen, at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be sure to add it to the list on the back of our bulletin. You can also email Gretchen to take off any prayer requests that are no longer relevant or needed.
You will find every newsletter, worship service, devotional, and additional material posted to our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/FlemingtonUnitedMethodist/
Even if you don’t use Facebook, you can access everything we have there. If you do have a Facebook account, “like” to follow our page and be notified when new things are posted or when videos are about to go live so you don’t miss anything.