God has transformed our friendships through his grace and love.
Here are two stories of God’s grace in the lives of the people of Stone Hill:
Leaslie Carr: At a young age I was introduced to the gospel. I attended church regularly with my mom. By the time I was an adolescent, my faith was my own and I had accepted Christ as my savior. However, soon after I left home for college, I was consumed by my pursuit of worldly knowledge and did not give God the first place in my heart. It was a slippery slope. I lost my way and began to compromise my values and my faith. This ultimately resulted in a relationship with an unbeliever. For eight years, I was compromising my faith and living an empty life. Despite my wayward heart and unfaithfulness, God did not give up on me. Through the pain of a failed marriage, I learned the true meaning of God’s unfailing love and His underserved grace. I learned what it meant to endure through the trials and to have hope in the living God. The bible verse that carried me through was Romans 5:3-5 “…but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” Today with my family by my side, I give thanks for God’s underserved grace and for new beginnings.
Peter Evans: When I was 16 and a young Christian, my family moved to Bangalore in south India. I resented having to move there, and grumbled vocally to my parents that they took me to India, and grumbled in my heart against God for allowing it to happen. Over the course of our first year there, the resentment turned toward bitterness and anger at God. It finally came to the point of praying to the Lord that, unless he changed my heart, I could not love India by my own power. And in what felt like a personal miracle, that is exactly what the Lord did. It was not instantaneous, but rather over the course of many months. And by the end of the second year, I had grown to deeply love the nation and people of India. I often reflect on how much mercy the Lord showed me during that time. It also helps to remind and encourage me that, when people or situations seem beyond hope, the Lord can and does indeed soften hardened hearts. I'm proof of that.
Adult Ed: Theology Class will not meet this week.
Adult Ed: 1 Corinthians Class will meet at 9:30 a.m. in the Library.
Church Financial Update: Since October 1st, we have received $225,810 in income. Thus to hit the $300K goal, we will need unusually strong giving this last week of November. We are grateful for all you have done. Your support of the Second Offering and the Benevolence Fund is also greatly appreciated. “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:32
Members of Stone Hill are encouraged to nominate Elders and Deacons: You must be a church member to nominate and all nominees must be church members. An Officer Qualifications sheet will be available to help as you make your nomination(s). To nominate, fill out the form found in the Westerly Prayer Chapel, and place it in the Nomination Box, bring it by the church office, or email your nominees to firstname.lastname@example.org. All nominations will need to be in by the 4th of December.
No Empty Stocking: We are again partnering with Princeton Human Services to provide gifts for needy kids in our town. Just stop by the “No Empty Stocking” tree and pick up a tag, purchase some of the requested items ($50-$75 total) and return the gifts to the tree by December 5. Feel free to create a group to support a child. Some of our congregants have had the opportunity to participate in parent pick-up day and the gratitude of the parents is almost overwhelming.
Young Adult Christmas Worship & Party: December 14 at 8:00 p.m. Enjoy worship, with carol singing, followed by a Christmas Party.
All Church Christmas Party: December 17 at 5:00 p.m. we will have a Christmas pageant, gingerbread house making, and supper. Invite a friend!
Christmas Choir Concert: December 10 at 6:30 p.m. A service of Lessons and Carols.
AWANA: Needs gently used items for its upcoming Store on December 13th. If you have items our AWANA clubbers would enjoy, or might make good Christmas gifts for family and friends, please bring your donations to either the church office or the Children’s Welcome Desk.
Casseroles needed for ISI Christmas Banquet: International Students (ISI) ministry is holding their Annual Christmas Banquet on Saturday, December 2. They are asking for 10 more casseroles to be provided by Stone Hill Church.
· Suggested casseroles: chicken, beef, turkey, vegetable, rice and potato
· Size: 10-12 servings each casserole
· Label the dish "ISI" and include heating instructions
· Bring casserole in a disposable dish
· Not needed: dessert, salad and dinner rolls
· Deliver to Stone Hill Church kitchen before noon on December 2
· Contact Connie Darrow (email@example.com) with questions
John & Aruna Desai with International Students ministry share the good news of Jesus Christ to international students at Princeton University. This is their 40th Annual Christmas banquet. For more information about ISI, please visit their website at isionline.org.
Haiti Trip Application: The deadline to apply for the Haiti trip next March has been extended to November 30, 2017! Have your passport and health insurance info at hand.