Church was awesome today! I had been looking forward to it actually. While I really enjoy my personal bible studies, and fellowship with my Christian friends throughout the week, there’s nothing like church.

I am fairly new to the church I’m attending, and several times I’ve questioned whether I’m in the right place - or even a member of the right denomination. But every single week seems to bring confirmation that I am where I am supposed to be, and I feel lead to stay and get involved.

One of my closest friends stayed over last night, and as we were getting ready for church this morning I said, “TGIS!” with a big smile. She laughed and said “what’s that?” And I said, “Thank God it’s Sunday! I’ve been looking forward to this all week.” :D

We both laughed because we knew that it wasnt very long ago that either one of us might have said “TGIF!” instead - glad for the weekend so we could get out and have some fun. It’s amazing how God can change you from the inside out, in the blink of an eye. (pause for praise)

Here’s a quick recap of my Sunday, to give you an idea why I enjoyed it so much:

I’ve just recently joined a Sunday School class. In fact, this was only my second week attending. They are in the middle of a study on the book of Acts, and today’s lesson was Acts chapter 3. Let me just say, too, that the Sunday School teacher and his wife impress me as two of the kindest people I have ever known. The very first Sunday that I attended church there, I ran into them at lunch afterwards… and they made a point to say hello and fill me in on other activities I might be interested in. Great people!

The church service was exceptionally good this morning too. One of the younger ladies got up and sang her heart out to a favorite hymn, which was a great addition to our usual praise & worship music. Everyone in the sanctuary was on their feet, clapping while she sang, and obviously moved judging by the smiles on everyones faces. She really brought a blessing to our service this morning, and I praised God for her - for her song - and for her courage.

Afterwards our pastor gave a powerful message that began in the 6th chapter of Isaiah. I’ve been studying Isaiah on my own lately, so I followed along with great interest. I could sum up the story he was referring to with the famous words: “Here am I. Send me!” (Isaiah 6:8). He went into great depth giving us ways to look at God in a new light - to have a better understanding of Him.

I scribbled down a note, though now I cant remember if it was inspired by the pastor’s teaching, or if the pastor said it himself: “Praise God in everything that you do, and for everything in your life. There is more to prayer than needing something or asking favors.”

After a good lunch and an afternoon nap, I was refreshed and looking forward to evening service. Tonight was the beginning of a new study on the book of Revelation, to be continued each Sunday evening (though I am not sure how many Sunday’s the study lasts). Tonight’s study was on the first eight verses - Rev 1:1-8 and it was an incredible introduction to the book and to the study!

Afterwards there was a business meeting, which I stayed for - though that was the first time I had ever sat in on something like that. It was quite interesting actually, and I was glad I stayed. Our church participates in Awanis, which is an outreach program for the children. They send a bus out and pick up anyone who would like to come on Wednesday night… and the program has grown steadily for the last few years.

During tonight’s business meeting, they talked about Awanis, and the issues they were facing considering the steady growth in attendance - but the fact that the number of volunteers was about the same year after year. I am actually involved in my church because of this Awanis program… because my daughter was invited by a friend, and then ended up staying involved for three years.

During that third year, she decided to get baptized and become a member of the church, and so I attended that Sunday morning to see my daughter get baptized. I knew the moment that I walked into the sanctuary that I wanted to attend there myself.

As I was leaving tonight I spoke to the program director and told her feel free to place me where she needed me - that I would be happy to volunteer. After all, it’s the very program that was responsible for a series of life-changing events in my life over this past year.

Awanis kicks off in less than two weeks, and I am very much looking forward to being involved. Also coming up is a Tuesday night bible study on the old testament titled “Patriarchs” and a Thursday morning interdenominational study - both of which begin in September. God has given me many opportunities to grow, learn and become involved… and I am incredibly thankful for that!

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