Everyone says that forgiveness is a wonderful idea, until he has something to forgive. C.S. Lewis
Forgiveness is a profound component of reconciling grace. It means we resolve our own fury over someone’s wrongdoing and let the offender go free. The power of the gospel shines through forgiveness with a rare brilliance. It means that we love the person more than we care about what he or she has done. Forgiveness isn’t easy.
The Apostle Paul knew this. Yet he wanted to bring about reconciliation between two men who were converted to Christianity under his ministry: Philemon, a wealthy Greek landowner living in Colosse around 60 AD, and Philemon’s runaway domestic servant, Onesimus. Philemon was incensed with Onesimus, who apparently left an unethical work record as he fled the country. Now, though, both men were valuable to spreading the gospel. The Colossian church met in Philemon’s home. In Rome–a long way from Colosse–God led Onesimus right into Paul’s presence! A changed man as he embraced Christianity, Onesimus became so effective that Paul would have liked to have him assist his ministry in Rome. Yet, chancy as it was for Onesimus to return to Colosse where he might be put to death for his misbehavior, both men agreed that the errant servant must restore his relationship with the master he had wronged. To smooth the way, Paul prepared a winsome letter for Onesimus to carry to Philemon:
I always thank my God when I pray for you, Philemon, because I keep hearing about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all of God’s people. I am praying that you will put into action the generosity that comes from your faith as you understand and experience all the good things we have in Christ. Your love has given me much joy and comfort, my brother, for your kindness has often refreshed the hearts of God’s people. . . . I appeal to you to show kindness to my child, Onesimus. I became his father in the faith while here in prison. Onesimus hasn’t been of much use to you in the past, but now he is very useful to both of us. I am sending him back to you, and with him comes my own heart . . . It seems you lost Onesimus for a little while so that you could have him back forever. He is no longer a servant to you. He is more than a servant, for he is a beloved brother, especially to me. Now he will mean much more to you, both as a man and as a brother in the Lord. . . . If he has wronged you in any way or owes you anything, charge it to me. I, Paul, write this with my own hand. I will repay it. Philemon v. 4-7, 10-12, 15-19
“Charge it to me. I will repay it.” That is what Jesus did for you, friend! By His grace, your relationship with God is restored! Take hold of His promise! Like Onesimus, do you have something you need to return to and make right? Do you have someone like Paul who can help you do that? For whom might you serve as a “Paul” to help bring about reconciliation? Be bold. Be loving. Be like Onesimus and Philemon.
Your Senior Pastor, James Winegardner, will preach about “Lessons from Acts” for our 9:00 and 11:30 Sanctuary worship services. Chisholm Trail Academy will provide our worship music, directed by Conner Mason, with Kayla Anderson ministering at the piano. Pastor for Young Adults Michael Gibson will tell the children’s story, and Rick Weaver will call for the offering, which will support Keene Church Ministries and Operations. Associate Head Elder Mickey Johnson will offer congregational prayer. Steve Bradley will serve as Deacon in Charge..
Young Adults, your Pastor Michael Gibson will preach about “The Meek” at Elevate in the Sanctuary at 10:15. Southwestern Adventist University Associate Chaplain April Snyder will welcome you, and Nu Pham will read Scripture. Congregational prayer will be led by Yu Hu and Villardy Alce. Chaplain Snyder and Hau Sing will present the blessing.
General church fellowship potluck is this Sabbath after second service. We expect 125 extra guests! Bring lots and lots of food and joy!
Learn how to use LOGOS Bible software to get the most out of your Bible study, and interact with others. To sign up contact Pastor James at 817-253-0957. Sabbath, 3pm, Room 107.
Is there a God? What is the evidence? Find out from Dr. Azevedo this Sabbath afternoon at “The Professor Says . . .,” 4 o’clock, Room 104.
Masterpiece, similar to Painting with a Twist, meets this Sabbath at 4:30pm in the Annex. Come and fellowship with friends, enjoy an afternoon devotional, and create a masterpiece!
We are excited to welcome 3ABN to Keene tonight! Enjoy their concert (with testimonies), at 7pm in our Sanctuary. Danny and Yvonne Shelton, Greg and Jill Morikone, Angela and John Lomacang, Jason Bradley, Tim Parton, and Ryan Day will be here.
In memoriam –
- We are sad to report that Bobby Hodges, husband of MaryAnn, father of Barry Hodges, David Hodges, and Patricia Phillips, passed away at midnight October 30. His service will be held in our Sanctuary at 3:00 Sabbath afternoon, October 16. Please remember his family in prayer.
- Afton Frank, wife of the late Dr. Harold Frank, long-time Keene residents, passed away at age 86 on October 19. Her memorial service will be held in the Grand Junction, Colorado Church on Sabbath, November 2, at 2:30pm. Cards can be sent to Don and Cindy Barton, 565 Red Tail Court, Whitewater, CO 81527.
Daylight Saving Time ends at 2am Sunday, November 3.
Ladies, enjoy a meal together on November 3! In addition to our Breakfast Club that takes place on the second Monday of the month, we invite you to connect at our NEW brunch on the FIRST Sunday of each month at 10am at SWAU cafeteria! Brought to you by Women’s Ministries!
From Hurt to Hope – death…divorce…depression… Tuesday night, November 5, 7pm, you’re invited to the Annex for a grief recovery discussion with David Slee and Ingo Sorke.
Grief recovery support group for those experiencing loss will meet Tuesday, November 5, 7:30 pm, in room 106. Led by Sonia Vergel
Wednesday night Bible study – Pastor James Winegardner points out exciting revelations of God’d leading as we study the Book of Joshua in the Chapel at 7pm. Understand this familiar Bible story as never before!
Senior Share, our senior food pantry, will be open this Thursday, November 7, at 1pm in the Annex.
Veterans: During worship services on November 9, we will recognize our veterans, active service, those lost in action, and their families. Please send a picture of yourself in uniform to firstname.lastname@example.org so we can put it on the honor roll. Please put your name with it so we make sure we have the right name. For those who are able, please wear your uniforms.
We will have a Greeter potluck and meeting November 9, 1pm in the Fellowship Hall. If you are interested in joining the greeting team, please come! If you are already a greeter, please come for important information!
LIFT Food Bank one-year celebration – All Food Bank volunteers who have helped over the past year are invited to a special celebration on Sunday, November 10 at 7 pm! Bring your favorite fall treat or snack. Popcorn and drinks are provided. This will be a time to share stories, celebrate our growth, and learn where the Food Bank is headed next.
We are excited to offer a FREE benefit concert featuring Ysis Espana on Sabbath, November 23, 4:30pm in our Sanctuary. We’ll collect a love offering to support our Pathfinder Bible Experience team!
We need another 20 deacons to serve Keene Church. If you’re interested in joining our deacon team, contact Head Deacon Glen Robinson at email@example.com Pastor Rick Weaver at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ten Pathfinders have memorized 100 verses from Ezra, Nehemiah, Amos, Jonah, Micah. They’re aiming to reach NAD-level testing in Washington State–cost: $1,000 per Pathfinder. Please consider sponsoring online: http://adventistgiving.org/#/org/ANWFPB/envelope/start. Under local church select ‘more offering categories,’ then select ‘show all,’ then Pathfinder Bible Experience; or write a check to Keene Church, memo: PBE 2020.
Keene Church Bible Schools – We have Bible schools in over 10 states around the United States. We have hundreds of Bible volunteers to distribute thousands of Bible studies to all over the U.S. And we need you! Whether in volunteering your time sending letters and grading Bible studies, praying for our volunteers and students, or by giving financial support, all are needed to run the biggest prison ministry in the United States. Thank you!
Life Groups (see board near Welcome Desk for details)
Nov. 2 – Logos Life Group-3pm, Room 107
Nov. 2 – Masterpiece, 4:30 pm in The Annex
Nov. 2 – Professor Says…Dr. Azevedo, “Does God Exist?”– 4 pm, Rm 104
Nov. 3 – Ladies’ Brunch, 10am at SWAU Cafeteria
Nov. 3 – Dutch Oven Cooking, 3:30pm, CTA
Nov. 3 – Disc Golf, 9am, Course besides Duck Pond
Nov. 5 – Hurt to Hope Grief Recovery, 7pm, Annex, Drs. Sorke/Slee
Nov. 5 – Grief Recovery Support, 7:30pm, Rm 106, Sonia Vergel
Nov. 6 – Loops of Love, 2:30pm
Nov. 6 – Intercessory Prayer Group, 5:45 pm in Prayer Room
Nov. 6 – Joshua study, 7pm in the Chapel
Nov. 6 – In a Flash Photography group, 7:30pm in Media Room
Nov. 6 – No-sew Pumpkin Centerpiece group, 6:30pm in Annex
Nov. 7 – How Personalities Affect Depression & Recovery – 6pm, Rm 104
Nov. 8 – Old-Fashioned Singspiration-7pm in The Annex
Nov. 9 – Bible by Design-2:30pm in Room 107
Nov. 9 – Young Adult Bible Study & Game Night – 7:30 pm (2717 Hill Lane)
Nov. 10 – Birdwatching, 8:30am, Church Parking Lot meetup
Nov. 11 – Ladies’ Breakfast Club, 8:30am at Keene City Station
Keene Adventist Elementary School 302 Pecan St, Keene. 817-645-9125
- Join us at the KAES Library on Thursday, November 7 at 6pm for Fall stories read by KAES students who will then will give you a small craft and a snack to take with you when you leave. If you have any questions or would like to help, please contact Miss Amanda at: email@example.com.
- PreKindergarten Fundraiser – On Friday, November 8th the Pre-K class will partner with City Station Cafe here in Keene to raise money for our classroom. If you visit City Station on this day, mention you’d like to support the Pre-K class at KAES when you pay for your meal. Our class will receive a portion of the sales made that day. Our 13 little learners thank you for your help and support! Don’t forget to mention our name when you pay!
Chisholm Trail Academy – 401 S. Old Betsy Rd., 817-641-6626
We welcome Chisholm Trail Academy musicians to our Sanctuary worship services this Sabbath! We are proud of you!
Southwestern Adventist University 100 W Hillcrest St, (817) 645-3921
- We invite our church family to join us for a special event this Sunday, November 3, 2pm to our annual International Food and Missions Fair! Come for food, fellowship, international music and to learn more about our local and international missions!
- Hal Wright Science and Religion Lecture Series will feature David Bebbington, Distinguished Visiting Professor of History at Baylor University, speaking on “Evangelicals: Who They Have Been, Are Now, and Could Be” November 16, 4pm, Wharton Auditorium.
- North American premiere screening of “The Dig” is Saturday, November 16, 7pm. Free! 817-202-6628; SWAU.edu/thedig
“Paul voluntarily proposed to assume the debt of Onesimus in order that the guilty one might be spared the disgrace of punishment, and might again enjoy the privileges he had forfeited. ‘If thou count me therefore a partner,’ he wrote to Philemon, ‘receive him as myself. If he hath wronged thee, or oweth thee aught, put that on mine account; I Paul have written it with mine own hand, I will repay it.’
“How fitting an illustration of the love of Christ for the repentant sinner! The servant who had defrauded his master had nothing with which to make restitution. The sinner who has robbed God of years of service has no means of canceling the debt. Jesus interposes between the sinner and God, saying, I will pay the debt. Let the sinner be spared; I will suffer in his stead.” (Ellen G. White, “The Acts of the Apostles,” p. 458)
A gentle reminder: Remember Jesus’ parable of the unforgiving debtor in Matthew 18:21-35? Be sure to extend God’s grace to those who have wronged you. “Freely you have received; freely give.” Matthew 10:8
Be restored in Jesus, friend! Spread the gladness all around!
Your Keene Church Pastors
We have heard the joyful sound:
Spread the gladness all around:
Bear the news to every land,
climb the steeps and cross the waves;
onward! ’tis our Lord’s command:
Sing above the battle strife:
By His death and endless life,
Sing it softly through the gloom,
when the heart for mercy craves;
sing in triumph o’er the tomb:
Give the winds a mighty voice:
Let the nations now rejoice:
Shout salvation full and free;
highest hills and deepest caves;
this our song of victory:
(Priscilla J. Owens)