News & Views August 5

AUGUST MEMORY VERSE
"The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble.
He cares for those who trust in him."
Nahum 1:7


AUGUST 8th WORSHIP
Adult "Welcome" Class - 8:45 A.M. - Rooms 114-115
Connecting Point - 9:30 A.M. - Dining Room
Worship  - 10:00 A.M. -  Family Center Gym and Online

Mark Isaac preaching on "An Acts Attitude: Expect and Accept Opposition"
Read ahead: Acts 3:1-4:31
NLC Kids  - 10:00 A.M. - Rooms 101,103
Adults "ACE Overcomers" Class - 11:00 - Youth Room (in Gym)

THIS WEEK

Tuesday: Men's Bible Study, 6-7 a.m.
Wednesday: Elders, 4 p.m.; Prayer Group/Griefshare/Wacky Wednesday Kids, 6:30 p.m.;  
 Faith/Finance, 7 p.m.
Thursday: Open Gate Shelter Committee, 3:30 p.m.; Life Skills, 7 p.m.

A Vision Refresher

                                                                          by Pastor Mark
This blog started one year ago at the prompting of Chris Reimche and Chuck Boldwyn. They were hearing from some in the NLC family who felt disconnected from regular communication channels that had been disrupted by the pandemic. Elders and spouses were phone-calling through the church directory, I was working with Cece, John, and Emily to produce three devotional videos each week, and Dwight and Brian and I were preparing updated broadcasts for KRDU. Still, without weekly Sunday gatherings and printed bulletins many people were feeling out of the loop. So this blog was started, which Elaine and I convert into a printed copy that is mailed to about 35 households who don't have Internet connections or may just prefer a printed copy.

The point of the blog has been to keep us informed and inspired toward the vision our church agreed on in the fall of 2019. It has also provided another prompt for prayer, in addition to the weekly Prayer Gathering and Prayer Line. Connecting prayer with our vision is a no-brainer. Vision comes through prayer as God reveals His will to us and draws us to intercede for those to whom he has called us. The words I write in this blog may indeed inform and inspire, but it is through prayer that we receive from God what we need to join him in his work.

Let me offer you a refresher on our vision, which is printed in the top box of this blog each week: "We envision our church as a diverse family of faith, continuously transformed by Jesus Christ, authentically loving God, each other, and our community." Transformation is the key word. Our vision is of constant, continuous renewal through a personal relationship with our living Lord Jesus Christ, not just for others but for everyone including ourselves. In fact, it is the transformation that Jesus is accomplishing in you that will be evident to others. They'll see that "the old is gone, and the new is here!" (2 Corinthians 5:17). "And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." (2 Corinthians 3:18).

Far too many organizations create a vision statement and hang it on the wall, and don't do the things that bring that vision into reality. NLC leaders set a 12-month goal in November, 2019 to "shift our church more strongly and cohesively toward transformational community ministries". We shared with the congregation these 5 defining objectives to pray through and set to work at:
  1. Retrain church members/attenders to live out the values associated with the vision (relational, responsive, welcoming, prayerful, joyful, hopeful, reconciling).
  2. Retool for transformational ministries (like Faith & Finances) that meet the needs we see in our community.
  3. Rebrand church, which we did when we rolled out our new name--New Life Community.
  4. Realign church operations, teams and budget priorities toward goal (three new Ministry Teams--Welcome Readiness, Ministry Involvement, and Outward Focus, and staff changes)
  5. Redesign facilities to support and symbolize new church vision (currently tabled, though much of the equipment is installed and in use in the gym; Welcome Office plans).

Work on these objectives was hampered by mandates related to the COVID-19 pandemic, but we have still made progress. Hard as it has been, we have tried to understand and live out the reality that fellowship with each other comes when we are "on the way". That's what happened with Jesus and his disciples, and it happened all over again at Pentecost when the Holy Spirit filled Jesus' followers for ministry in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and beyond. As they went out together in Jesus' name to pray and serve, the Lord added daily to their number those that were being saved. And their joy and mutual care increased as well.

We're still on the way. Keep praying. Keep serving. Keep being transformed through your relationship with Jesus. And let his light and life be evident to all around you.
  • Pray over our church's vision, asking God to guide our steps toward ministries in our community that transform lives through Jesus Christ. Tell God that you're willing to be transformed by Him today that you might be used for His glory.
  • Pray for teachers, staff, parents, and students as schools open and homeschooling begins a new session. Dinuba Unified has used our facility twice recently for new teacher and substitute teacher orientation and training.
  • Pray for the family and friends of those who have recently passed: Gary Schnitzler, Joe De Luna, Kevin Buhler, Isaac "Junior" Regier. Nearly 400 people gathered at NLC to celebrate Joe De Luna's life and faith. It was a time of unity together with Christian Worship Center (CWC), NLC, and other ministries, too.
  • Edith Thiessen's brother, Roger Jost, is now in a rehab hospital. Praise the Lord for his health and ongoing recovery.
  • Frederick, Joyce Penner's son, is on hospice in San Francisco.
  • Continue to lift people with ongoing health issues before the Lord: Joyce Penner, Mae Ewert, Mike Naylor, Marilyn Chappell, JR Southard, Bob Heinrichs, and Brian Smith. 
  • Glen & Peggy Zimmerman were encouraged by Glen's cancer doctor this week and, after another MRI, will be starting immunotherapy AND chemotherapy treatments (possibly radiation, as well).
  • Join the Elders in prayer as we search for staff for youth, connections, and worship. 
  • Ask for God's wisdom for the Trustees, Stewardship, Elders, and church staff as they prepare a new budget for NLC. Pray for God's provision for the ministries to which He has called us.

Our Giving

Received Last Week (8/1):.............$5,126
Received this year to date:.......$411,111
Expenses to Fiscal Year End (Aug. 31):……………...........................………..$459,312
(includes anticipated expenses for August)
Offerings Needed in August to Cover Expenses by Fiscal Year End:….…$48,201

 Note from the Trustees
NLC Trustees thank those who have made donations to purchase the necessary equipment to enable us to launch and operate our web streaming service. Our priority is now to cover all our expenses through August. However, if you feel so led, we still need to raise another $25,000 for creating our new Welcome Office space located directly off the church patio that will be visible and accessible to those who come onto our campus. We invite you to be a part of that effort.
For more information please contact Chuck Boldwyn 
Note from the church staff: There are currently no health mandates in effect for NLC related to COVID-19. However, as cases are rising in the United States and in Fresno and Tulare counties it may be prudent to wear a mask when indoors in public settings, to wash hands frequently, and to consult your physician about receiving a vaccination if you haven't already received one.  
As some churches are saying, "We want to spread the Gospel, not the virus."

Mark Isaac

2 Comments


Alice Wiens - August 6th, 2021 at 1:27pm

I was so encouraged to read of the great results of kid's lives being saved for the Lord through VBS. Praise God that He is still at work thru the church!

Mark Isaac - August 8th, 2021 at 9:32am

Yes, praise the Lord, Alice! Thanks for praying with us for these young generations to follow Christ with all their hearts.