Trust in the Lord forever, for in the Lord God you have an everlasting Rock.Isaiah 26:4
Prairie summer will continue for another month, but its rhythm abruptly changed this week. Facebook fans exhibit first-day-of-school photos, road traffic has picked up, and tales of vacation travels dance a tango with “What’s your major?” exchanges at cafeteria lunch tables. . . .
During summer recess, did anyone from Keene explore Colorado’s Maroon Bells – Snowmass Wilderness and White River National Forest, about 12 miles up Maroon Creek Road from Aspen? Surrounded by the Rocky Mountains’ granite skyscrapers, Maroon Peak (soaring 14,163 feet above sea level) and North Maroon Peak (14,019 feet), tower like massive sentinels over brilliant wildflower meadows, aspen groves, and conifer forests where bear, elk, and mountain sheep roam, owls hoot, and chickadees sing. As though you’ve just ventured into a coffee table picture book, the Bells’ majestic red hue is perfectly mirrored in the glassy waters of Maroon Lake under a crystalline blue sky, reflecting a wreath of alpine vegetation whose colors alternately sparkle and brood while the sun travels high over naked geological spears. The Maroon Bells’ pyramid-shaped sister peaks are among 58 Colorado Rocky Mountain behemoths called “Fourteeners” – referring to their height — making Colorado the tallest state in the nation. (There are 96 Fourteeners in the United States, all west of the Mississippi, Alaska’s Denali winning the “tallest” trophy.)
There’s a hitch about the Maroon Bells, though. Unlike other mountains in the Rockies that are composed of granite and limestone, the Bells are composed of metamorphic sedimentary mudstone that has hardened into rock. Mudstone is weak and fractures readily, giving rise to dangerously loose rock along almost any route. A U.S. Forest Service sign on the access trail warns would-be climbers of “downsloping, loose, rotten and unstable” rock that “kills without warning.” *
How stable is your spiritual geology, friend? Have you tested it lately? Are you growing in God’s granite grace? (What are you doing about conservation?) Or are you sliding and stumbling on weak, fracturing mudstone–downsloping, loose, rotten and unstable? Check carefully! “There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death,” Solomon warned in Proverbs 16:27. “For life to have true meaning we must find a transcendent purpose in our lives,” says Donald Williams in his commentary on Psalm 61. “Since all of us are looking for some destiny, some goal, the Bible meets us at the point of our search, offering us the ‘Rock that is higher than I.'”
O God, listen to my cry! Hear my prayer!
From the ends of the earth, I cry to you for help
when my heart is overwhelmed.
Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge,
a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me.
Let me live forever in your sanctuary, safe beneath the shelter of your wings!
For you have heard my vows, O God.
You have given me an inheritance reserved for those who fear your name. . .
Then I will sing praises to your name forever
as I fulfill my vows each day. Psalm 61:1-4, 8.
(Scientific references: colorado.com; fs.usda.gov; wikipedia)
Your Senior Pastor, James Winegardner, continues his sermon series on Mark for our 9:00 and 11:30 Sanctuary worship services. Sarah Coulter will tell the children’s story. Pastor for Administration Rick Weaver will call for the offering, which will support Texas Vision. He will also offer prayer for first service. The Villania family will provide special music during first service, and Gisella Aguilar will minister at the piano. Keene Worship Band will provide second service music. Jimmy Aiken will serve as Deacon in Charge.
Young adults, your Pastor Michael Gibson and all of your Elevate team are excited to welcome you for the very first time to The Middle Service in the Sanctuary at 10:15 this Sabbath! You’ll enjoy the same great programs, inspiring music, yummy food, and heart-warming fellowship that have fueled your spiritual life at Elevate all along. Rejoice in your new place of worship, and be blessed!
Sanctuary Sabbath School and Elevate’s Middle Service location exchange is today! Starting this morning, the Sanctuary Sabbath School classes will be meeting in the Fellowship Hall. Our deacons and staff will be in the lobby to help anyone that needs assistance. Those preferring not to walk from the Sanctuary to the Fellowship Hall after first service are welcome to join the Sabbath School class that meets in the church office conference room, led by Christian Evans and Tony Zbaraschuk.
Join Connections Sabbath School as we study “The Call: The Life and Message of the Apostle Paul”! Mary Ellen Winegardner will lead this study for six weeks starting at 10:15 a.m. in Gathering Place Room 106.
New Sabbath School – The Bible Lab: A new Sabbath School called The Bible Lab will be starting this week at 11:45 a.m. in the Chapel. The goal is to research the Bible to find God’s authentic character, and to fall in love with Him even more in the process of discovery. This interactive Bible study is open to all.
Stars Adventurer Club Registration today for children 3 years old through 4th grade. The Adventurers Club will meet every other Wednesday night from 6:30 to 8:00 starting August 28. Please visit our registration kiosk in the Gathering Place for details or send an email to ccarterjd@gmail to request a link to the registration form.
Water Ministry – Please plan on meeting this afternoon at 3:00 in the church parking lot by the chapel. Thank you for contributing water all week!
Church Board – Tuesday, August 27, 7:00 p.m., Fellowship Hall.
Your friends at Wednesday night Bible study hope you’ll stop by the Chapel at 7:00 p.m. this Wednesday to be spiritually strengthened and encouraged by Pastor James Winegardner’s profound insights from “Hebrews – A call to faithfulness.” If you haven’t attended this series so far, you’re really missing a blessing. We’re on Chapter 8, so there’s still plenty of exciting material for you to explore!
Special Event Food Pantry! Mark your calendars! We are going to open a Special Event Food Pantry next Sabbath, August 31, from 1:00-4:00 p.m. at the Annex. With the increased food demand during the holidays, Tarrant Area Food Bank has generously offered to deliver food to us (as they normally do on our regular Food Bank day) for this special event.
Single Sisters in Service (SSIS) Potluck on August 31 will be held in the Fellowship Hall due to the Food Bank. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Got an announcement? You can now submit announcements for the bulletin from our website! If you visit our website at www.keenechurch.org, there is a new Submit Announcement link at the of our home page. Our goal is that our website is the only way to submit announcement requests.
Deacons Needed – The Keene Church needs another 20 deacons to serve in our church. If you have an interest in serving as part of our deacon team, please contact our head deacon, Glen Robinson, at firstname.lastname@example.org or Pastor Rick Weaver at email@example.com.
Kids Eat Free this Fall! This summer, we have delivered over 100 bags of food for elementary school students in the Keene Independent School District. Given the continued need in our community, we are going to continue our food program. Please continue to donate kid-friendly foods to the church office or to stations located throughout the church. Our supplies are running low, so your support is greatly appreciated! If you know of any children in our community who need food, please let Pastor Rick know at firstname.lastname@example.org
Oct. 11-13 Church campout, Lake Whitney State Park! Enjoy nature, fellowship, and worship on the lake shore. If you don’t camp, you can still join us Sabbath for worship, potluck and Smores on Saturday night. $24 per night per site + $5 per day per person over 13. Reservations or cancellations required by Sept. 27 to Veronique, email@example.com.
A New Life Bible School – “I love your Bible studies. Don’t ever stop them. They are a blessing to me. God bless you forever.” – Student
- You have a unique opportunity to adopt Bible students from our New Life Bible School! $15 a month will fund 10 students. Mark your tithe envelope “adopt” or “Bible School.” We have a gift for those who want to participate in the adoption program!
- The school needs VOLUNTEERS in the office to open mail and/or do data entry on Monday, Tuesday, and/or Thursday mornings. We also need TEACHERS to correct lessons (at home). Thanks!
Keene Adventist Elementary School is a ministry of Keene Church providing Christian education for children Pre-K through 8th grade. KAES offers music, technology, PE to round out a strong academic program. 817-645-9125.
Southwestern Adventist University is proud to be a part of the Keene Church family. The University’s family-oriented, Christ-centered atmosphere, supported by the Keene Church, offers the right environment for students to learn and grow. These attributes, sustained by strong academics with an emphasis on service and wellness, provide students with the tools necessary to obtain a degree and live a life of service. swau.edu.
- Great Controversy study tour: The Bible and the Reformation – England and Scotland, May 7-19, 2020. Contact Michael Campbell, 817-202-6479, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chisholm Trail Academy’s goal is to create a safe educational environment that fosters the development of a relationship with Jesus, promotes a life-long love of learning and service, and nurtures the optimal growth, potential, and character of each individual student. 817-641-6626.
In memoriam – The family of Donald Wardle, a Chisholm Trail Academy alumnus, wants you to know that he passed away on August 11. His funeral will be Sunday, August 25, 2:00 PM, at the Alvarado Seventh-day Adventist Church.
Beyond a Cooking Class Sunday, August 25 at 3:00 pm. Come learn how to eat for optimizing your brain function and increases your energy. Location: InterrWellness Retreat Center, 3701 CR 316C, Cleburne, Texas. Limited Space! Call Today for Reservation. (817) 909-9053. Ask about our 10-day detox program coming soon.
Job board – Check the job board for new opportunities posted this week!
The prophet Habakkuk, who faced many days of trouble, declared: “Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like a deer’s feet, and He will make me walk on my high hills” Habakkuk 3:18, 19. King David said the same: “Who is God, except the Lord? And who is a rock, except our God? It is God who arms me with strength, and makes my way perfect. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, and sets me on my high places. . . . You have also given me the shield of Your salvation; Your right hand has held me up, Your gentleness has made me great. You enlarged my path under me, so my feet did not slip. (Psalm 18:28-33, 35-36)
Hold fast to the Rock, Forever Family! Never risk unstable terrain.
Your Keene Church Pastors
Sometimes a Light Surprises
(Tune: “The Church’s One Foundation”)
Sometimes a light surprises
The Christian while he sings;
It is the Lord who rises
With healing in His wings:
When comforts are declining,
He grants the soul again
A season of clear shining
To cheer it after rain.
In holy contemplation,
We sweetly then pursue
The theme of God’s salvation,
And find it ever new.
Set free from present sorrow,
We cheerfully can way,
‘E’en let the unknown morrow
Bring with it what it may:
‘It can bring with it nothing
But He will bear us through;
Who gives the lilies clothing
Will clothe His people too.
Beneath the spreading heavens,
No creature but is fed;
And He who feeds the ravens
Will give His children bread.’
Though vine nor fig-tree neither
Their wonted fruit should bear,
Though all the fields should wither,
Nor flocks nor herds be there,
Yet, God the same abiding,
His praise shall tune my voice,
or, while in Him confiding,
I cannot but rejoice.