There is sweet chaos that comes with living in a house with three kids under 8. There is never a dull moment. Maybe it’s the older ones sword-fighting pirate style through the house. Or the little one dumping a cup of milk into his desktop waterfall. Sometimes, there’s bickering over legos, or a 2-year-old sharing his sandwich with the big puppy (one bite for me, one bite for you). I only have to spend one full day in the midst of the madness to recognize the energy and commitment required of moms and full-time caregivers to raise these gifts of God.
…..Every now and then, a day is chocked full of cooperation and good attitudes. Most days, there is some combination of cooperation, mischief, sweet snuggles and rebellion. Many of us have been there, I’m sure. In the process of parenting, I’ve learned a lot of things. But there is one thing that has stuck out to me most of all. I always want my kids to succeed. I always want a right relationship with them. I always want to see them cared for and contented. And I’ll do anything in my power to help those things happen. That’s why, when my 2-year-old comes and says, “I’m sorry Daddy,” my heart melts and forgiveness is abundant. Even the feelings I harbor when the cheerios are ground into the carpet or the markers end up on the walls are no match for the contrite little heart that comes running for a big hug. Grace is abundant. It gives me a new appreciation for my heavenly Father. As much as I’ve learned about grace, I’ve still struggled to believe that grace is abundant enough for me. But the heart of the Father is desperate to connect with His kids. And grace is His tool of choice. I’m thankful that we serve a God of abundant grace.
Last Sabbath, we talked briefly about drinking deeply of the grace of God, and resting in the experience of His abundant favor. If you missed out last week, check it out online (here. If you’re short on time, skip ahead to 27:00). Tomorrow morning, we will dig even deeper into the grace of God to recognize that it not only affects our relationship to Him but also to each other. I’m hopeful that you will join the community in worship tomorrow at Sunnyside.
Happy Sabbath! And see you soon.
News & Notes
Sabbath worship services are at 8:45 and 11:15 am. Pastor Jonathan Russell will be bringing us our Bible message entitled “Living Gracefully.”
Encounters with God will meet this afternoon at 5:00 pm and will feature Biruk Bekele. He was born in Ethiopia, is meeting with our friends here at Sunnyside, and has been in the United States for a number of years. During the time he has been here, he served some time in prison. He will share how the Lord used him to witness to others while he was incarcerated.
Tomorrow, Sunday, January 11, 4:00 pm, Felix Hell will be in concert here at Sunnyside. German concert organist Felix Hell is a phenomenon in several ways. Hailed as the “most well known young concert organist worldwide” (Dr. John Weaver), and “undoubtedly one of the major talents of the century” (Dr. Frederick Swann, AGO president), he “sets standards that many established and honoured older players would struggle to equal” (Michael Barone in “The American Organist”). For more fascinating information view his website at www.felixhell.com.
January 30 – 31:The Center for Bible, Faith and Mission, sponsored by Walla Walla University School of Theology, comes to Sunnyside. Their topic this year is, “Gifted Women, Reluctant Church: Where to From Here?” Presenters include David Thomas, Walla Walla University School of Theology dean, and Carl Cosaert, Theology of Ordination Study Committee (TOSC) participant and Annual Council presenter. The seminar begins Friday night at 7 pm, and continues Sabbath morning at 8:45 and 11:15, and Sabbath afternoon at 3 pm and 4 pm.
The Sunnyside Outreach Team is available to take referrals for individuals desiring Bible studies. If you know of someone, contact Tara at 360-977-0104.
In Your Church Library:
For Youth and Adults: New book additions are My Favorite Angel Stories by Joe Wheeler and an audio book, A Thousand Shall Fall by Susi Hasel Mundy. See a new DVD, the amazing Jack Blanco Story (author of Clear Word paraphrase) or listen to the inspiring CD’s of David Asscherick’s camp meeting presentations.
For Primary/Junior: We now have the 2014 Pathfinder International Camporee DVD’s. Pastor Jonathan says they are WONDERFUL!
Preschool: Read to your child one of the new books Jesus Loves Trucks by David Haluska or The Little Pilgrim by Paulo Debs. Also check out one of the musical CD’s Tiny Tots for Jesus by 3ABN.
New Bible Study Group at Sunnyside! Our outreach team is leading a Friday night Bible study utilizing Ty Gibson’s TruthLink Bible study series. Fridays at 6:30 PM.
Coming Soon to Sunnyside:
February 7: NPUC Young Adult Day of Worship. Our 11:15 am service will begin this annual event. Pastor Seth Pierce will be our guest, with inspirational music by local recording artist, Elise LeBlanc and our own Vivace young adult choir. Young adults from across the Pacific Northwest will be here for an inspirational worship experience. 8:45 am service will be a more traditional service.
Portland Adventist Academy
Portland Adventist Elementary
January 11, 5 PM: VEGAN potluck and fascinating presentation by Robert Ellis, DO, PhD on Nutritional Approaches to Cancer Prevention. Dr. Ellis works in the Hematology and Oncology Department at Kaiser Permanente in Longview, Washington, where he is developing a program that integrates healthy eating in the treatment regimen for patients with malignant disorders. January 11, 5pm @ Healing Hope SDA Fellowship, 15150 NE Glisan St. Portland, OR. This is a NW Veg sponsored event. Please bring a vegan (plant-based with no animal products, including honey) main dish, salad, or dessert and a card listing its ingredients.
May 29, 30, 2015: Hood View Church’s 50th anniversary homecoming. A small group of Adventists from Gresham and Sandy first met on April 3, 1965, in what is now the Bell Tower Chapel in Boring. They were formally organized on May 29 of that same year. Save the date and plan to join us as we recognize God’s providence over the years!Evemt Location: Hood View Church.
July 17-30, 2015: 2015 Great Controversy tour with Dr. Gerard Damsteegt of the Seminary, Andrews University. See the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation come alive in Europe. Visit Rome, the Waldensian Valleys, Switzerland, Germany, and France. Experience Early Christianity, the Dark Ages, the Reformation, and the “deadly wound.” For more information email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 269-815-8624.