Dear members and friends of Valley Park,
It is the Christmas season! We direct our attention, hopefully through the entire month of December, on the real reason for the season. That reason is celebrating the birth of Jesus as the most important event in history because of what Jesus came into the world to accomplish. In fact, the exact day on which Jesus was born does not really matter; though this year we celebrate it on Sunday, December 25. We do not actually know the day He was born. We are simply celebrating that He was born. I will be elaborating below and through my Sunday messages the reason for why it is so important.
Before elaborating a little, I want to encourage you to keep using the invitation cards we have printed for the “Gospel & Blues” Worship Unleashed services. They are an easy way to invite people to church on any Sunday knowing the same musicians are leading. Tell people you want to encourage them because we are so encouraged by what our church is doing. Tell them we know we have the best worship music, followed by thorough teaching and free lunch. Let them know how pleased you would be if they would join us on a Sunday morning. Use the cards (shown below) to break the ice. Ask the greeters at the door where to get these cards.
This month, close to 12 of our children will be singing in our service on Sunday, December 11. There are three Christmas songs being sung and a solo. We have been blessed to have two of our worship team members working with the children since the first Sunday of November, so I am anticipating real encouragement as our children participate in worship.
Also, be reminded that December 11 is our Annual Christmas Luncheon after the morning worship service. Lunch will be accompanied by celebrative activities that will make the day especially memorable.
We will sing one of my favorite Christmas hymns, Joy to the World, Sunday, December 25 during worship. I am always reminded that I, as a child and youth, sang this song every Christmas without being aware of the meaning of the words I was singing. Now, as I am so familiar with the prophecies written over a period of 1,000 years in the Old Testament, I understand the meaning of what Jesus was born to accomplish and the words sung in “Joy to the World.”
Joy to the world, the Lord is come, Let Earth receive her King
Let every heart prepare Him room, and Heaven and nature sing
Joy to the Earth, the Savior reigns, let all their songs employ
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains repeat the sounding joy
He rules the world with truth and grace and makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness and wonders of His love
This song references a huge number of prophecies about the authority of the Jewish Messiah, a King-type person with authority to remove evil from the world and heal creation. See II Samuel 7:8-17 written 1,000 BC, Psalm 2 and 110 at 1,000 BC and Isaiah 9:6-7 and 11:1-10 around 740 BC. There are two significant things Jesus was and is committed to doing in order to heal the world and establish the Kingdom of God. In the life He lived for 33 years, He proved His God-like power to heal, protect and provide for every earthly need. One need Jesus met is forgiveness of sin through dying in our place. His observed power to take care of the visible needs proved His power to take care of the spiritual needs that we do not see.
“the works which the Father has given Me to accomplish—the very works that I do—testify about Me, that the Father has sent Me.”John 5:36
“Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe; the works that I do in My Father’s name, these testify of Me.”John 10:25
The first significant thing Jesus did was to provide forgiveness of sins. Sin is the manifestation of evil in the human heart and the heart needs to be healed before the establishment of the Kingdom of God on earth.
“But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”
—then He said to the paralyzed man, “Get up, pick up your stretcher and go home.”Matthew 9:6
“Joy to the World” celebrates a reality we do not yet see but know is true because of what we have already seen that Jesus can do and did. So, the next significant thing Jesus will do is establish the Kingdom that will reflect what “Joy to the World” celebrates. We sing because we have confidence in Jesus for a world that is healed by the Messiah!
2 The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him, The spirit of wisdom and understanding,
The spirit of counsel and strength, The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.
3 And He will delight in the fear of the Lord, And He will not judge by what His eyes see,
Nor make decisions by what His ears hear;
4 But with righteousness He will judge the poor,…
9They will not hurt or destroy in all My holy mountain,
For the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.Isaiah 11:1-4, 9
“Joy to the World”, the Lord is come, Let Heaven and earth rejoice!”; this line from the hymn celebrates what we do not yet see, but know one day will be seen by every person in the world.
Merry Christmas, Pastor Kevyn
Valley Park Ministries: Pray for the Following Ministries
Project Angel Tree (Prison Fellowship)
Check with Ann Jones or Tammy Eacker to see if all gifts are being managed for delivery. Pray also for a healthy witness on behalf of Valley Park Church as gifts are distributed to families for children of incarcerated parents.
Christmas Luncheon and Singalong: Sunday, December 11, 12 Noon
Children’s Ministry- Diana Nason
All children join parents in the sanctuary at 10:30 A.M. for music and worship. They are dismissed to their class during the greeting time before the sermon.
Parents need to sign their children in when they drop them off and pick up their children promptly after service. Infants – kindergarten are in Room 2 and grades 1st – 5th are in Room 4.
Youth Ministry- Victor Paz Meeting Location- Ranch House
Wednesdays from 6:30-8:30 P.M.
Sundays from 10:30 A.M. in sanctuary for worship and approximately 11 A.M. to 12 P.M. in the Ranch House.
Small Group Opportunities
Wednesday evenings at 7 P.M in the Conference Room to study, talk and pray.
Wednesdays: We are serving close to 110 families involving close to 500 people. We always need help between 1-5 P.M. with set up, serving and cleanup. Please help us reach out to the people who come.
Valley Park’s December Birthdays: Members, Friends and Youth
Please consider giving us your contact info and birthday so we can include you in our recognition of birthdays.
12/03 Sara Lineberger
12/03 Jonathan Guerara
12/06 Cynthia Houghton
12/08 Dean Spiva
12/10 Susan Han
12/15 Kaye Weber (100 years old)
12/19 Jericho Eugenio (child)
12/22 Jade Rivadeneira (child)
12/26 Romina Navarro (College)