NLC News March 23 2023

Last Thursday I spent the day flying to South Bend, Indiana, to be present for my nephew's wedding. I had planned the trip with my parents so that I would meet them in the Dallas airport and we would fly together to South Bend, where my brother would pick us up. Easy-peasy.
Flights these days don't often happen as planned. Weather delays. Mechanical problems.
Crew and airport staff shortages. Security issues. Uncooperative passengers. You name it. Over Christmas, Laurie and I actually drove to Las Vegas because our flights were cancelled.
For this trip with my aging parents we had planned enough of a margin between flights not to be concerned about running to catch the next plane. Or so we thought.
My parents' flight out of San Luis Obispo was delayed an hour. That meant a gate change in Dallas to one in a terminal further from our next flight. That meant we would not be able to get to the next gate in time to catch the plane to South Bend. I called my brother with the news.
My brother couldn't talk about all of that right then.
He said his wife (mother of the groom) was not coherent. Her words were garbled and he was concerned she was having a stroke. We hung up immediately so he could get her to the hospital, where she ended up staying overnight.
I texted Laurie to pray, and then I called Nori Naylor.
"I need a prayer warrior," I told her when she answered the phone.
"Okay," she said, "How can I pray?" And I told her.
I needed two miracles: (#1) that my parents and I would make the next flight, and (#2) that my sister-in-law would be restored and able to be present for the wedding (a bridal shower, wedding rehearsal, and the rehearsal dinner all on Friday, as well as the Saturday afternoon wedding and reception). It all seemed to me to be falling apart and turning into a tragedy.
So Nori calmly and confidently took these matters to the Lord right there on the phone,
and prayed as well for my own sense of peace in the situation. I thanked her and we hung up.
Then I got a text back from Laurie.
"Allison found her wedding ring!!!!!!!!!!" I wasn't expecting that, but what amazing news!
Our oldest daughter had lost her very valuable diamond wedding ring a year ago. She struggled with the loss after turning the house upside down in her months-long searches to find it. And now it had suddenly appeared in one of her jacket pockets! "Praise the Lord!!!!!!!!!!" I replied. "That's miracle #1. Now we will trust God for miracles #2 and #3."
My parents finally arrived at their gate and I calmly took my mother's arm and led her and my dad to our next gate, down the hallway, up the escalators, onto the train, off after 4 stops, down more escalators, through a tunnel, up more escalators, down the hall, and finally to the gate.
23 minutes, just like the terminal map app had said. The door to the plane was closed.
This had happened to my parents in Dallas before, and they were told it was a federal law that the door could not be reopened once it was shut. That time, they had missed their flight.
This time, the gate agent opened the door.
And as the alarm was going off, my parents and I boarded the plane. Miracle #2.
The next morning my brother picked up his wife from the hospital. She was fine. There will be more tests, but for now it is inconclusive. Maybe a TIA (mini-stroke), and maybe not. She was able to attend every event that day and the next, celebrating her only son's wedding.
Miracle #3.
Praise the Lord! Praise him for his answers to prayer! And praise him for the sisters and brothers he has given us in the body of Christ, this family of faith! 
5:30-8:30 p.m. - Dinner/Worship/Testimony from Scooter/Groups/Rock Solid Cafe
6:00 p.m. - Women's Ministries "Taco 'bout Ladies Game Night!" - Dining Room
9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Celebrate Recovery "Identify and Manage Anger"  Seminar - Dining Room
8:30 a.m. ADULT GROWTH CLASSES - NLC KIDS ministry for parents in growth classes ONLY
  • NEW Video Class: Romans - Room 111
  • Faith & Finances - Room 114/115 (final session)
9:30 a.m. CONNECTING POINT (Dining Room) and Connecting Point for Kids (Rm 101)
  • Pastor Mark speaking: "Time for a New Life!" - Ephesians 6:18-24 (final message in the series)
11:15 a.m. AFTER CHURCH
  • The Bible Out Loud - Spiritual growth class for parents - Room 111 (with kids activities)
  • GRAB & GO MEALS - or STAY & EAT in the Dining Room
6:00 a.m. NEW Men's Bible Study - Gospel of John, part 2 - Dining Room
9:00 a.m. LIFT Women's Bible Study - Encountering God - Room 114/115
6:00 p.m. CELEBRATE RECOVERY Women's Step Study - Room 114/115 (the group is full)
6:30 p.m. Healing Rooms of Dinuba offers healing prayers - Church patio/library

6:00 p.m. Worship Rehearsal - Gym
6:30 p.m. Prayer Gathering - Room 113

5:30 p.m. CELEBRATE RECOVERY Dinner - Dining Room
6:30 p.m. CELEBRATE RECOVERY Worship / Lesson / Small Groups

10:00 a.m. FRESNO PACIFIC UNIVERSITY Presidential Inauguration Ceremony - 1717 S Chestnut

  • Mark Romero from Dinuba YFC Campus Life will be speaking
  • Deacon team meeting after church

FRIDAY-SUNDAY, APRIL 7-9 - "Created New" VBS Experience
EASTER SUNDAY, APRIL 9 - Baptisms, Elder Affirmation of Otto Ekk, NLC Kids' Art Hop, Egg Hunt, and MORE...
11:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m. - Community-wide OUTREACH EVENT - Rose Ann Vuich Park

All-Church Campout

Plans are coming together with a good number of people already signed up for all or part of the 5-day church campout. Tents are available to borrow for yourself or for your family, and the total cost for any and all days you can come is just $40. Never seen the ocean? Now you can!
There will be plenty of time to rest or lots of activity options including shopping in Morro Bay, walking the beach, golf, cornhole, campfires, shared meals, games, and maybe deep sea fishing.
Pastor Mark, Bruce, and Jessica are planning to be at the campout for Sunday morning worship. If you can't make it, Elders are working on an informal worship and communion service at NLC, though there will be no separate NLC Kids' ministry at church that day. Come to the Campout!

Candy needed for Easter VBS

NLC Giving this Year

Received Last Week (3/19)  …...  $4,328
Received this year:  ……........   $204,571
Budget to Date: ………….......    $235,097
Budget Goal: ………................   $421,553
Needed Weekly: ……............……   $9,434
  • Pray for discernment with the Elders about Otto Ekk's affirmation as a new Elder at NLC.  We hope to affirm his calling as an Elder on Easter Sunday morning, April 9th.
  • Praise the Lord for his miracles! Please share yours with others in the comments below so we can all praise the Lord together! Stan R. Isaac shared the miracle of 3 years cancer-free at the men's Bible study this week! And we're still praising God for Glen Zimmerman's recovery.
  • Eugene Enns is receiving cancer treatments starting this Sunday. Pray his body can handle it and that the treatments will be effective and eliminate the cancer.
  • Mike Naylor begins radiation soon, so pray his body responds and he is healed. 
  • Pray for Sonya Morgan's 36-year old brother, Jason, who is awaiting biopsy results from his liver cancer. His mother died of cancer at a young age, so pray for healing and peace.
  • Mark & Laurie's friend, Vanessa, will begin aggressive chemotherapy for cancer soon. Pray her body can endure the treatment and that she can live to share God's glory of healing. 
  • Pray for both Manuel and Natalie who are dealing with vertigo, and continue praying for JR Southard's health and strength. Remember Bob Martin who has not had the strength to come to church (nor wheelchair accessible transportation). 
  • More children are coming to Jesus through Good News Clubs at Monson/Sultana and Jefferson schools! Continue praying for them and for the leaders who are serving them.
  • Pray for our upcoming VBS, for leaders, resources, and children's hearts prepared to receive the love of God through Jesus.
  • Pray for our outward-focused ministries, especially our Home Resource Center. This ministry has put us in touch with many people in great need, but the opportunity for longer-term relationships has not been happening as we had hoped. Pray for Carolyn Ehoff and Phyllis Enns as they lead this ministry. Let them know you'd like to help. Pray for deep connections with people and opportunities to help them grow in faith in Jesus.
After 33 years of missionary service in Portugal, Otto & Marjorie Ekk have returned to Dinuba and to their home church--New Life Community! The Elders invited Otto & Marj to pray about his calling here as an Elder, and he has agreed. We were able to sit together as an Elder team to talk about that with him, and are confident that God has brought them back with specific gifts and insights to provide leadership in ministry at NLC.
One of the ways that became clear was Marjorie's affirmation of the vision and mission that NLC has taken, turning ourselves outward to our community with the transforming power of the Gospel. This is the church where she grew up; the very church that sent her out to Brazil and later to Portugal to carry the good news of Jesus Christ. And now she sees us doing that in new ways right here in our own community. They are happy to be back in such a church!
One of the unique ways Otto & Marjorie have carried the Gospel is by using business and social enterprise as tools to connect with others. In Portugal that has involved a thrift store, appliance repair, a local shared workspace/business hub, and a tiny home business. Our vision in Dinuba seems ripe for similar tools, especially as ministries like Faith & Finance and the Home Resource Center put us in touch with people's needs.
Otto & Marj will continue to make trips to Portugal in their retirement, including a trip with Mark & Laurie this September to see the results of their missionary work, how the ministries are growing today, and connecting with the people living and serving there. 

For the next two weeks, please join me, Bruce, Chinoh, and the Trustees in praying for God's discernment for Otto's role as an Elder. They are currently in Portugal and are happy to answer any questions or get to know you by email. They return on Monday, April 3.  You can email them at On Easter Sunday, April 9th, we hope to affirm Otto in the role.


Ken Sawatzky - March 23rd, 2023 at 1:05pm

What an uplifting News and Notes for the week. It is exciting to see the miracles that God has performed in the lives of his children at NLC. I am excited to hear about Otto's calling to become an elder at NLC. The experiences that he and Marjorie bring from their years in Portugal will be a great asset to our church.

Sonya Morgan - March 23rd, 2023 at 2:48pm

Thanks for sharing your miracles! Just what I needed to hear! God is good all the time and the miracle maker!

Thanks for praying for my cousin Jason.