LIVERMORE – At the North Livermore Baptist Church service on December 12, the congregation was greeted by Pastor Bonnie Higgins at 9:30 a.m. to begin the service. Pastor Bonnie began to tell the congregation that it is Advent season. The call to worship was read and the Lord’s invocation / prayer was recited. The hymns that were sung were “Angels from the Realms of Glory”, “It Came Upon the Midnight Clear”, “O Little Town of Bethlehem”. The service ended with “Go Now in Peace”. Linda Lyman is the organist every week. Lew Lyman conducts music for the congregation each week.
Pastor Bonnie explains the Advent wreath and lit the first candle of hope, the second candle of peace, and the third candle of joy.
The sermon, titled “Salvation is joy,” and the scripture reading from Isaiah 12: 2-6. Pastor Bonnie began by saying that we need to turn our hearts, minds, and eyes away from the secular parts of Christmas and focus on the real reason for Christmas, the birth of Jesus Christ. This week it was about being happy in our lives as God intended. Sometimes our lives don’t seem happy, but if we watch we can find joy in all circumstances. As you read the Bible, you will find that the Bible talks a lot about joy rather than happiness. Happiness is an outward expression and joy is an inner feeling. Even in the midst of the darkness of this world, we find hope through the promise of Jesus’ second coming which should be a personal joy. We need to find the real joy that Jesus gives his people in their lives.
There are ways to find the joy Jesus gives to His people. We find joy in the salvation given to us free of charge when he died and rose again on the third day to overcome death. We find the joy of spending eternity with Jesus because of his resurrection. We find joy in the hope we find in Jesus. Whatever our life, there is hope for a better future. There is joy in the Word of God. God has given us his Word, so that we can understand why he has done everything for his people and give us instructions on how we are to live for him.
We find joy in the Church of God. Get together with other believers praising and worshiping the living God. There is joy in our lives when we meet our Savior as we move from this world to His world as we end our life on earth. We find joy in what we have in Jesus, our Savior. Knowing all that he has done for us, we can be joyful in knowing that he did it because he loved us.
We should live our lives to show others that no matter what this world gives us, we find joy in it because we know Jesus will bring us out. We see and hear things that unbelievers cannot. Joy is present in all things through Jesus Christ our Savior. As we worship, praise, pray and sing for Jesus, there is an experience of joy through this. The scriptures tell us in 1 Thessalonians 5:16: “Be joyful always! Child, Jesus came to change the world, how can we not be happy!
The announcements listed in the newsletter were that the congregation will collect cereal for the pantry in December. Bible study begins at 1:00 p.m. every Tuesday. The church collects for the retired minister / missionary offering. There will be a meeting of the Nominations Committee on December 13 at 3 p.m. There will be a Christmas program during morning worship on December 19th. The Christmas Eve service will begin at 6 p.m. on December 24. AA meetings are held on Friday evenings at church.
For more information, see our website at northlivermorebaptistchurch.org. You can email the church at [email protected] Pastor Bonnie’s office hours are Monday and Tuesday from 9:00 a.m. to noon.
Free Christmas program offered