Sunnyside Communique

Dear Church Family, 

I write to you this Friday evening as the Sabbath begins, turning the page on another week and, nearly, another year.  The new year is a bittersweet time for me.  I appreciate the opportunity to look forward to what can be, to celebrate the coming of a new year.  And yet there is a distinct disappointment because we are entering into a year that I never thought would come.  When I was in first grade in the 1980’s , I was certain that I’d never see the year 2000.  Jesus would come before then.  Alas, He didn’t.    When I was a college student, sitting in class on the morning of 9/11/01, I knew for certain that we wouldn’t see another decade go by.  Certainly, Jesus would arrive before then.  And yet here we are.  Now more than a decade has indeed rolled by and we’re turning the page on another year, one that many of us never expected to see.  What’s the first year you distinctly remember that you never expected to see?  Share in the comments below.

I still look forward to the soon coming of Jesus.  How soon is soon?  I don’t know.  But I know that Jesus has promised to be with us, “even to the end of the age.”  And if He hasn’t come yet, it reminds us that there are more things for His people to do on this earth.  As we look forward into 2012, I hope that you will spend some special time with your Lord to gain a vision of His particular calling on your life for the new year.

A couple of friendly reminders on this New Year’s Eve Eve.

  1. We invite you to participate in the church’s New Year’s Eve party tomorrow night.  Pastor Scott and I will lead worship at 6PM at Portland Adventist Academy.  Supper will follow shortly after that.  Please bring something to share.  The planning team suggests: Sandwiches, Chips, salsa & dip, Fruit Salads, Vegetable Trays, or Desserts.  I’m coming to the party ready to play basketball.  I hope somebody else will plan to do so as well.  Basketball is a lonely sport all by yourself.  If that’s not your thing, we’ll have volleyball, board games, and other fun group activities.  Make a point to be there! 
  2. If you are planning to make 2011 donations to the church, please be sure to have them at the church office tomorrow, or use the online giving service to make your donation before 9 PM Pacific tomorrow.
    • Two specific areas to consider in your year-end giving.
      • The Family Resource Network has been serving many needs of our members throughout the year.  They have helped with rent, food, utilities, and other basic needs for those who were desperate.  This is a wonderful ministry of Sunnyside and is made possible by direct donations to the Family Resource Network.  If you would like to donate, please mark your gift with acct #9387.
      • Our church has begun a renovation campaign.  Have you heard about it?  The first phase of the project is going to cost nearly $240,000.  If we are to meet this goal, it will take sacrifice from all of us, not just a few. Please consider investing in your church facility and helping to maintain it for the glory of God.  If this is your desire, you can mark your gifts with “Building Fund”

Tomorrow is Communion Sabbath.  We will be celebrating the Lord’s Supper together.  In preparation for this service, I have been thinking about “The Road to Unhappiness.”  The road to unhappiness is paved, it seems, with broken promises, unfulfilled resolutions, and disappointed expectations.  Yet, the New Year always comes with new promises (ready to be broken), new resolutions (abandoned by Valentine’s Day?) and fresh expectations (likely to be disappointed).  How, then, can we make it through the new year unscathed?  Let’s talk.  Tomorrow.  Both services.  I hope you’ll be there.

Blessings to each of you as you enjoy the Sabbath and welcome the new year.

Pastor Jonathan

P.S.  Thanks to those of you who were thinking of and praying for my family and me as we were moving from one house to another this week.  We didn’t move far.  We just found a better place for our family to make a home.

About Jonathan

I am a husband, a father, and a follower of Jesus. I get excited about cultivating faith in the lives of my kids and exploring ways that the church can make a positive impact on its community.
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