Peggs Community Church

Morning services for Dec. 1 opened in prayer led by Brother Loyd Eaton with 63 in attendance. The devotional was Psalm 26, and the first song was "Joy To The World."

Happy birthday to Alex Magee this week. Happy wedding anniversary to Larry and Melody Setters, and get well wishes to Michelle Fisher. Also, don't forget all those that have been mentioned on the prayer chain, not only this past week but even before. Prayers do work and people appreciate that someone cares enough about their problems to pray.

The Christmas play practice is Wednesday night and Sunday morning for anyone involved in the play. It will be presented Dec. 22. The youth have a float entered in the Christmas parades in Locust Grove on Dec. 10 and Tahlequah on Dec. 13.

The food pantry is Dec. 11, and the senior dinner is Dec. 19.

Brother Rex took his message this morning from Matthew 1:1-21, and the genealogy of Jesus' earthly father, Joseph. Beginning with Abraham, there are 142 generations mentioned, father to son; each descendant being the one to receive the blessing and the promise that was given to Abraham by God, that one of his seed would always sit on the throne of Israel.

The Joseph we are concerned with this day is the last one mentioned in the descending of the line. Called the "silent witness of God's goodness and strength" by Brother Rex, we recognize that this man, in his obedience to God, took to his wife a young woman already with child in a time that she could have been stoned to death for her "sin." Joseph loved the child; raised him, protected, taught him, and did all the things that a loving father would do for his child. The one thing Joseph never got to do is hear Jesus preach. Now, Joseph's life wasn't always easy after accepting all this responsibility from God, indeed, he was forced to move at least three times in order to safeguard the holy child he'd been appointed to raise.

We never read a direct quote from Joseph anywhere in the gospels. And yet, we know him to be a good man, strong in faith, obedient to God, steady and sure in his ways, and loving. Actually, besides being the "silent witness," Joseph can stand as a shining example of how a man should live – even in today's environment of chaos. We know all these things about Joseph because of how he lived his life – his faith was lived out, not shouted about or bragged about. Yes, he definitely shows the best attributes of a man that loves and lives for God. A true Christian, before the name was ever used to describe someone. We can all learn from his example.

Kay Cordray

CCF

Welcome to Community Christian Fellowship, a nondenominational, Bible-preaching, teaching Church of God. The church is on State Highway 82 South at Keys. Prayer service tonight is at 6 p.m., and, as always, come as you are. Regular services are as follows: Sunday school, 10 a.m.; worship service, 11 a.m.; and Wednesday and Sunday night services, 6 p.m.

If you need information or would like to contact the church, send your emails to Msjennyhsb@yahoo.com. All letters will be answered.

"Brethren, I speak in terms of human relations: even though it is only a man's covenant, yet when it has been ratified, no one sets it aside or adds conditions to it" (Galatians 3:15).

If you have ever entered into an agreement with someone, some business, or signed up for some promotion, you always have to agree to the "terms and conditions." Each website that you sign up on to join, each promotion you want to take advantage of, every contest that you enter, all have terms and conditions. If in filling out your information you neglect to check the terms and conditions box saying that you have read them and agree with them, when you submit it, it will send you a message instantly reminding you and your request will not be submitted until you do.

The Lord also has "terms and conditions" for us to follow. But, like the rich young ruler, we want to set our own terms. We want to join ourselves to him on our own conditions, Setting your own terms doesn't work and is not acceptable in the business world with online promotions or in any other agreement. Even in marriage there are terms and conditions; it's called vows. If it is not acceptable in the physical world, why do we think it is acceptable in our dealing with God? Why do we think that "man" won't allow it, but God will?

Trying to set our own terms with God carries consequences. It will keep us out of the Kingdom and we won't enter in. It will bring chaos and confusion to our lives; it will bring the chastisement of the Lord upon us; it will rob us of peace, joy, blessings and victory.

Does this describe you this morning? Are you trying to get to the Lord on your own terms? Are you trying to live for him according to your own conditions? It won't work. He has set the "rules" and they require that you come to him and live according to his terms anything else he will not accept.

God has his own set of terms and conditions, and if we are going to come to him and follow him we must agree to them and not try to set our own.

Jenny Dameron

Come and Dine Church

Come and Dine Church is at 1984 N. Grand Ave., which is north on Highway 82 by by Ragsdale Wrecker Service.

Morning service is at 10 a.m. Morning prayers were led by brother Rick Walker. Service started with singing and the reading of a come-and-dine chapter. Classes are at 10:30, and worship is at 11. We start with prayers, songs from children, special songs, birthdays and anniversaries, and an offering is taken up. The Word is given by Brother Bobby Hudson.

We had a beautiful service with 33 people coming to join us in worshiping with the Lord and praising him.

Preaching next week is Brother Bobby Hudson. Bible study by Kerry Fogleman is at 7 p.m. Tuesday will be in Proverbs, and Friday in Ephesians. Snacks are served after.

Karen Walker

First Apostolic

The sweet presence of the Lord was felt in our midst as services opened with prayer and songs of praise for Sunday morning, Dec. 1.

“God Is Omniscient” was taken from Daniel 2:19-23, 38-41, and 44-45. Daniel was a descendant of the royal family of David. He had two outstanding characteristics in his service to the Lord: an established prayer life, and guidelines or boundaries over which he would not step as he separated himself from the ungodly world around him. He refused to partake of food offered to idols or anything else that was not of God. We too must set boundary lines that we might become a vessel of honor in the house of God. If we purge ourselves of things of this world and not over-involve ourselves, lest we miss church, we will be a vessel of honor, consecrated for the Master’s use. Our prayer life is essential, as are strong convictions and standards of holiness, in our walk with God. When temptations come, we need to have our praying taken care of, for the lack of prayer or communion with our Lord will lead us into temptation.

Daniel was called before the king to not only interpret a dream, but to also recall the dream that the king had dreamed. Because of Daniel’s faithfulness to God, even in times of captivity, God showed him both the dream and the meaning of it. He told the king that the image with feet of clay and iron, which represented the fourth kingdom, would eventually be broken up by a stone cut out of the mountain without hands, and be scattered as pieces of chaff in a summer wind.

Daniel was able to see ahead until the Jews would be taken into captivity, where many would fall by the sword. Jerusalem was to be trodden down until the times of the Gentiles would be over. The Kingdom to be set up over all the kingdoms of this world and consume them shall stand for ever and it is the Kingdom of God; that Stone cut out without hands is Jesus, God manifest in flesh.

In these last days, those that will be with him are called and chosen and faithful. Only those who are consecrated and true to him will be those vessels of honor. God is faithful and true and his word is forever settled in heaven.

Let us make ourselves vessels of honor so the Lord can us in his Kingdom before he returns for his Bride.

Feel welcome to visit any time: Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. The church is two miles south of Speedy's on Welling Road. For information, call 918-401-0368 or 918-458-9498. Visit our website at facwellingok.org.

Nancy Walker

Tahlequah First Baptist

The house was very quiet, there wasn’t even a crackle from the fire that had been blazing just hours before. The last carolers had appeared on the 10 o’clock news and the last of the Christmas pies had been eaten. The Christmas music had been put away for another year since they had performed their duty of bringing beautiful Christmas music into the home. It was midnight and the clock had chimed. A man had gone to bed but couldn’t go to sleep. He kept thinking about the week of Christmas. He was thinking about how different the world was. The magic of Christmas touched humanity ever so briefly and reminded us of how we are supposed to be and what is really worth having. We put down our laptops, ledgers and briefcases. We didn’t look at our watches; we laid down our weapons. We put our roller coaster lives on hold for a brief time and looked to the star of Bethlehem. We look for Jesus. The reason the season is so jolly is because we look and think about Jesus.

And because people are thinking about Jesus, he comes to the forefront. He is Christ the Lord to those who go through the whole year without thinking or seeing him. People who use his name in vain use his name in praise at Christmas time. Our eyes now see him and his majesty. All of a sudden he is everywhere. In the acts of policemen as they take presents to orphanages. In people going back home to celebrate Christmas all over the world and to see their loved ones again. In a father too thankful to finish the dinner table prayer. In a mother’s tears that welcomes her son home from overseas. He is in the heart of a man on skid row who is sharing cold baloney sandwiches and warm Christmas wishes. He is in a busy crowd of mall shoppers who suddenly stop and listen to a carol sung by a chorus group of elementary children.

It is midnight on Christmas night. He couldn’t go to sleep because he wanted to savor the last little bit of magic that lingered in the air because he knew that the next day would bring taking the lights down, the tree down, exchanges and half-price sales. The generosity of December will become January’s payments and the magic will fade. He wanted to savor those last few moments of Christmas.

If Christ can do this with a month or two out of the year, think what he could do if we thought of him every day throughout the year.

The FBC Christmas Musical and Drama will be Saturday, Dec. 14, at 6 p.m., and Sunday, Dec.15, at 8:15 a.m. and 10:45. Everyone is welcome to join us.

Terri Fite

Unitarian Universalist

Unitarian Universalist congregations affirm and promote the seven Principles, which we hold as strong values and moral guides. We live out these Principles within a "living tradition" of wisdom and spirituality, drawn from sources as diverse as science, poetry, scripture, and personal experience. We call these the "six sources," and within them we glean inspiration, spiritual expansion, commonality, ways of being with each other and the world around us.

The "six sources" come from:

• Direct experience of the transcending mystery and wonder, lifted up in all cultures, that moves us to a renewal of the spirit and openness to the forces which create and uphold life.

• Words and deeds of prophetic people which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love.

• Wisdom from the world's religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life.

• Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God's love by loving our neighbors as ourselves (also a concept shared in nearly every religious and spiritual path since the beginning of human consciousness and community).

• Humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason and the results of science, and warn us against idolatries of the mind and spirit.

• Spiritual teachings of Earth-centered traditions that celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature.

Reverend Kathleen Rolenz sums it up well when she shares that, "Throughout history, we have moved to the rhythms of mystery and wonder, prophecy, wisdom teachings from ancient and modern sources, and nature herself." UU's love the words of the world, and one learns this, not just by visiting a service, but also by talking with us and perusing our libraries.

We welcome you to UUCT every Sunday at 11 a.m. This Sunday, Rev. Debra Garfinkel joins us for another dose of love, support, and inspiration. Our adult forum discussion begins at 10 a.m.

Find out more about us on Facebook at "Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Tahlequah, 104 N. College Ave." December is also a beautiful time of month for our congregation. Come see what all the fun and fuss is about.

May you be blessed as you are a blessing each and every day.

Traci Clark

God's Mountain Church

Rev. Carl Clark opened service with prayer. Pastor Carl and Sandra, accompanied by Lula Thompson, sang “l’m Glad l Know Who Jesus Is.”

Classes adjourned with Sandra Clark teaching the juniors. Brother Donald and sister Holly were absent due to illness. The teens stayed in the sanctuary. Jade Blakley was in charge of the nursery today.

Brother Ethan Horney taught the adult class on Hebrews 11:1-40. Without faith, it is impossible to please God. We have so many examples here proving God’s miraculous power moving in impossible situations.

We must put our faith in Jesus today. He is the same God of Elijah, Moses, Daniel and on and on. What a mighty God we serve. All things are possible to those who believe.

Classes returned to the sanctuary. Prayer requests were taken followed with prayer. Congregational singing included the selections: “Joy to the World," “Hark the Herald Angels Sing," “Little Town of Bethlehem," and “Silent Night.” I might add, we had an angelic choir today.

The booster band sang “Confidence," “Put on the Whole Armor of God," and “Jesus Loves Me.” Lula Thompson and Jamie Horney opened worship service with “Because He Lives.”

Rev. Clark delivered the message from Luke 19:1-10. The son of man is come to seek and save that which is lost. We know Jesus, the great shepherd, left the 99 safe in the fold, and went out to find the one little lost lamb.

Jesus found Zaccheus who had climbed up in a tree because of the press and he was little in stature. Jesus went home with him that day. Salvation truly came to the house of Zaccheus after he openly repented.

Service closed with an altar call and prayer for those responding. Jade Blakley dismissed the congregation in prayer. Attendance was 57.

Wednesday evening Bible study is at 6 p.m. Everyone is welcome.

Lula Thompson

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