“With God we soar like eagles” – Keene Adventist Elementary School motto. (School established January 1893)
God Himself took charge of His people, took Jacob on as His personal concern. He found him out in the wilderness, in an empty, windswept wasteland. He threw His arms around him, lavished attention on him, guarding him as the apple of His eye. He was like an eagle hovering over its nest, overshadowing its young, then spreading its wings, lifting them into the air, teaching them to fly. God alone led him; there was not a foreign god in sight. Deuteronomy 32:9-12, Message
Gazing toward the sun by day or viewing the moon on a clear, star-pierced night, if you’re lucky you’ll see eagles flap and glide along blue thermal currents at 35-45 miles an hour. Soaring upward, propelled on their seven-foot wing span in ever-widening spirals, they seem to suddenly vanish, escaping through the roof of the sky. Then, spotting a white speck from miles distant, they plunge at breathtaking speed past forested mountain crags to snatch fish from splashing river rapids or the sparkling sea–dinner for hungry eaglets back home. Oh, to be so free and powerful! . . . Perched high on a twisted, bony branch, an eagle, observing you with vision roughly that of a human peering through six-power binoculars, seems not so much to look at you but to see into you! Oh, to see life with an eagle’s clear vision! . . . Sporting dark-rimmed yellow irises, yellow beaks, and yellow boots, eagles in flight automatically adjust their intricately created feathers into shapes that respond to different pressures from the air. . . . Oh, to be so adaptable!
But wait. Eagles are not free. If they succeed in starting a family, they are forever bound to their nest. They build it sturdily, tenderly adding to the same nest year after year using materials such as sticks, mosses, pine needles, grasses, and feathers until the nest may be 12 feet deep and five feet wide, creating a cozy home for their young. When the eaglets are old enough, their parents gradually bring less food to the nest–incentive for the eaglets to hunt on their own. When the fledglings wobble at first flight, their parents are close by to give them a lift . . . A striking metaphor illustrating God’s care for us! (Source: “The American Eagle,” Beyond Words Publishing)
“Even youths will faint and be weary,” said the prophet Isaiah, “and the young will fall exhausted; but those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength. They will mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” (40:30, 31) Practically and theologically, how does one “soar like an eagle?” How is learning to hope in God like a fledgling bird learning to fly? Compare verse 31 with Exodus 19:4 and Deuteronomy 32:10-11. How has God “caught” you when you have fallen instead of flying? In what way is He teaching you to fly now? Here’s a miracle: Even when you are not waiting for the Lord, He has not forgotten His covenant with you! The beautiful assurance of God’s care quoted in our opening passage from Deuteronomy follows hard on the heels of Moses’ no-nonsense reprimand to God’s people for their breach of covenant with God. But God is faithful. He didn’t abandon His covenant with Israel when they faltered. He called them back into relationship with Him. He will keep His covenant with you, too. Trust Him! “With God we soar like eagles.”
I will thank you, O God, in front of all the people.
I will sing your praises among the nations.
For your unfailing love is higher than the heavens.
Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
Be exalted, O God, above the highest heavens.
May Your glory shine over all the earth. Psalm 108:3-5
Keene Adventist Elementary School’s 2019 8th Grade graduating class will lead our 9:00 and 11:30 Sanctuary worship services. Pastor for Children’s and Family Ministries Travis Patterson and Eighth Grader Samuel Infante will present the message. Annelise Mora will play a flute prelude for first service. During second service Pastor Patterson will baptize Lexi Rosenthal. Danna Salazar will tell the children’s story for both services. Alejandra Munoz will call for the offering, which will support Keene Church Ministries and Operations, during first service, and Andrea Waterman will call for the offering in second service. Diego Saminiego will offer prayer for first service and Sophia Patterson will pray for second service. DaQualyn Duncan will read Scripture for first service and Matthew Castro will do so for second service. The 8th Grade Handbell Quartet will play the offertory, and the 8th Grade Marimba Ensemble will perform before the message. Karen Savignon will play piano and Zuleica Savignon will play the organ. The first service choristers and the second service praise team will be Sophie Jahn, Celeste Galvan, Rashard Isreal, Tomas Lopez, Zephanny Parilla, Dominique Thomas, Sofia Zamleduch. Instrumental Ensemble: Flute: Annelise Mora. Clarinets: Ivory Bradwell, Miriamyelie Gonzalez, Lexi Rosenthal. Tenor Saxophone: Ian Ruch. Trumpet: Danna Salazar. Handbell Quartet: Ivory Bradwell, Lexi Rosenthal, Danna Salazar, Henry Valderrama. Marimba Ensemble: Ivory Bradwell, Alvin Kimanga, Tomas Lopez, Ian Ruch, Danna Salazar, Henry Valderrama, Vusa Tshuma. Steve Bradley will serve as Deacon in Charge.
Young Adults, Pastor Michael Gibson will continue his sermon series, “Ten Steps from Eternity,” at The Middle Service at 10:00 in the Fellowship Hall. This week he will discuss “His 12, Your 12.” Come and enjoy great music and fellowship. Visitors are very welcome!
Traveling Light – Release the burdens you were never meant to bear. Come and join Connections Sabbath School’s new book study beginning today, 10:15 AM in Gathering Place Room 106!
Attention Sanctuary Sabbath School teachers. We invite you to join an important planning meeting today at 2:00 PM in Room 106.
Pathfinder Investiture is today in our Sanctuary at 2:30 PM. Everyone is invited! God bless you, Pathfinders! We are proud of you!
Vacation Bible School teacher training will take place in the Fellowship Hall this Sabbath afternoon from 4:00-6:00, and on May 21, 6:00-8:00 PM.
Pam Tucker presents “Sounds of Grace” in concert tonight at 7:30 in our Sanctuary. Bring your family and friends for an inspiring vesper treat!
In memoriam – Our longtime church member James Lynn Bothe passed away in Keene last Sabbath morning at age 94. He is survived by his son, Richard Bothe and wife Twyla, of Keene; daughter Jan Gibbons and husband Bob, of Plano; grandchildren Chad Bothe, Kim Picchi and husband Jay, Alex Banton and wife Amanda, Marty Strickland, Carson Gibbons and Meredith Gibbons, and numerous great grandchildren and other family members. His wife Mary Donna (Ball) Bothe preceded him in death. A veteran of the United States Army, Jim owned and operated General Insurance Service in Keene for many years. A private graveside service was planned at Keene Memorial Park Cemetery. Please remember the Bothe family in prayer.
For those Keene Church members that are delegates for the Texas Conference Constituency that wish to ride the CTA bus on May 19, please plan to be at the CTA parking lot and on the bus so we can depart promptly at 6:30 AM.
Motorcycle breakfast – May 19, 9:00 (26th if it rains on the 19th). Meet in the church’s upper parking lot!
Wednesday night Bible study – James Winegardner will continue our study of “Hebrews – A call to faithfulness.” We’d love to have you join us in our Chapel at 7:00 for fellowship and discovery!
Women’s Spring Tea – Women’s Ministry WINGS will host a spring tea to all women in our church on June 2, 11:00 AM in the Annex. Cheri Gatton, Idaho Conf. Women’s Ministries Director, will discuss “What Gives You Joy?” Bring your favorite teacup! Pr. Cheri will also speak at Camp Meeting!
“KIDS Eat Free this Summer” Did you know that summer is the hungriest time of the year for many children in our community? We need your help! We’re starting a new program, partnering with the Keene Independent School District, to provide backpacks of food for children in Keene. Here are the items that will be needed from May through July:
- Peanut Butter: 1 12-16 oz jar; Jelly: 1 12-16 oz jar; Ramen Noodles: Box of 6; Fruit Juice: Box of 4-6; Fruit Cups: 4-6 pack; Applesauce: 4-6 pack; Oatmeal (instant): 1 box; Mac and Cheese: 1 box; Ravioli/Spaghettios: 2 cans; Cereal: Box of 6 (individual portions); Granola Bars: Box of 6; Mixed Veggies: 2 Cans.
Please drop any of these items off at the church office. For details, please contact the church office at 817-202-6450.
Vacation Bible School registration continues today! Visit our booth in the Gathering Place or register at vbspro.events/p/keenesdachurch. VBS be June 10-14, 6:00-8:30 PM. Families are invited to enjoy the fun as we visit Athens and learn of Paul’s adventures. Registration is required.
Teacher training, Fellowship Hall May 18, 4:00-6:00, May 21, 6:00-8:00.
VBS Wishlist of Needed Items
Donations can be dropped off in the age 0-2b Sabbath School room with Michelle Karmy. Info: Sarah Coulter 540-908-9428.
- Supplies: 2000 jingle bells, 12 bags dried beans, staples, 250 glass jars, masking tape, brown shoe polish, clear sealer, tarp, craft sticks, self-adhesive jewels, washable crayons markers, hole punchers, modeling clay, 1-inch dowels, assorted rubber stamps, animal puzzles, stuffed animals
- Décor: Large sheets, large heavy blankets, greenery/vines/silk plants, cardboard
- Food: Linkettes, crackers, hummus, fruit, olives
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.
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.
- Congratulations, Kindergarteners, as you graduate this Sunday evening at 6:30 in the Sanctuary!
- KAES Graduation, Sanctuary, May 23, 7:00 PM
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.
- Parent Appreciation is Friday, May 24, 7:30 PM, Sanctuary
- CTA Baccalaureate is Sabbath, May 25, 11:30 AM, Sanctuary
- CTA Graduation is Saturday night, May 25, 9:00 PM, Sanctuary
A Memorial Day service will be presented Monday noon, May 27, at Keene Cemetery. A free brunch for veterans and community will be served from 10:00 to 11:30 at the Cemetery Chapel. Veterans, we appreciate you!
Summer Camp – There is still space available at Lake Whitney Ranch for ages 7 to 14 and 18 to 35 (Teen Week is full). Consider sponsoring a young person to attend camp this summer. It is a life-changing experience as the campers get to know Jesus as their personal friend while participating in fun activities. Find more information at txyouth.org. Click the “Summer Camp” tab at the top.
Helen Grace Lescheid tells of a chaplain who was paddling down a river with a friend. “To one side, high on a cliff, sat a bald eagle, its white head feathers glistening in the sun. As we watched, it soared into the blue sky, then swooped into the water, thrusting its strong talons into a big fish.
“But then, the eagle got caught in the rushing current. Up and down it went with its beak firmly in the fish. Then both fish and eagle were sucked under the water. Why doesn’t he let go of the fish, I thought. Why does he insist on keeping it?
“We were startled by a commotion downstream. ‘The eagle,’ I shouted. ‘It’s come up again.’ Sure enough, the majestic bird had broken free of the fish and the deadly torrent and headed for the surrounding rocks. For a moment the bird rested in the sun preening its soggy feathers. Then it spread its enormous wings and rose above the tree tops into the sky.
“‘Aren’t we like that?’ the chaplain asked. ‘At times we feel sucked down into life’s raging torrents.’ Is there something that’s dragging you down? Like the eagle who wouldn’t let go of the fish are you hanging onto a weight of resentment or bitterness or unrealistic expectations of what life should be like? Release it. It’s a weight that will drag you down into despair. Let the spirit of the Risen Christ buoy you up and give you strength to rise above your circumstances.
You are not meant to be tumbling in the undertow, you are meant to soar. Because Christ lives in you, you can live triumphantly.” (thoughts-about-god.com)
Soar joyfully in the everlasting way, friend! (Psalm 139:24)
Your Keene Church Pastors
Those who live in the shelter of the Most High
will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
This I declare about the Lord:
He alone is my refuge, my place of safety;
he is my God, and I trust him.
For he will rescue you from every trap
and protect you from deadly disease.
He will cover you with his feathers.
He will shelter you with his wings.
His faithful promises are your armor and protection.
Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night,
nor the arrow that flies in the day.
Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness,
nor the disaster that strikes at midday.
Though a thousand fall at your side,
though ten thousand are dying around you,
these evils will not touch you.
Just open your eyes,
and see how the wicked are punished.
If you make the Lord your refuge,
if you make the Most High your shelter,
no evil will conquer you;
no plague will come near your home.
For he will order his angels
to protect you wherever you go.
They will hold you up with their hands
so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.
You will trample upon lions and cobras;
you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet!
The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me.
I will protect those who trust in my name.
When they call on me, I will answer;
I will be with them in trouble.
I will rescue and honor them.
I will reward them with a long life
and give them my salvation.”
(New Living Translation)