Easter Weekend Reminders and Encouragements

Good morning RVC family, 

As a reminder, here's our Easter Weekend Schedule:

Good Friday - tonight @ 7pm, family-style

Easter Sunday - hot breakfast @ 9am, family-style service & baptisms @ 10am,  Easter activities @ 11am. 

Pastoral encouragements for Easter Weekend: 

  1. Prepare Your Heart

    1. Pray Thank God that Jesus died in our place, absorbing our punishment into himself; praise him for the power of the resurrection. Ask the Father to stir your affections, and prepare your heart. Pray that our neighborhood, friends, and family would respond to the invitation to Easter this weekend.  

    2. Invite - I've listened to a couple different stories of people inviting their friends to church this weekend. If there is ever a Sunday to invite someone to church and not feel awkward, it's Easter! 

    3. Reflect - We're all very busy with school, work, and preparing for Easter weekend so it's important to slow down and get some silence and solitude to reflect. What is God teaching you this Easter? What truth about the cross, resurrection, power, and rescue of God is resonating with you this year and why? 

  2. Serve Your Community 

    1. Breakfast Ministry - This Easter Sunday we've invited our community to come celebrate the hope of the resurrection. This means we may double in attendance this Sunday so we need all hands on deck. If you're interested in helping on in the kitchen, please e-mail Kari at @Operations 

    2. Welcome Team - First impressions are very important, and as believers we want to offer warm hospitality and help as new folks come to RVC for the first time. If you're interested in welcoming folks, please contact @Samuel Bretz  

    3. Activities Team - Easter Egg Hunt, Crafts, Face-Painting, Bounce Houses, Photo Booth, If you're interesting in helping out with all the fun Easter activities starting at 11am, please contact @Yee Feng or @Jason Lischke

  3. Worship Your Lord 

    1. Sing - Singing is a powerful way of meditating on the truth of Easter. Sing songs that focus your heart on Jesus' death and resurrection. Sing his praises, sing of his sacrifice, sing of his love. 

    2. Eat - Worship through meals and hospitality this Easter weekend. Acknowledge God's provision and enjoy his goodness. Food is a great way to connect with others, offer friendship, and enjoy family and friends. 

    3. Rejoice - We're to be a Good News people, and far more is caught than taught. Our neighbors, family, friends, kids, and visitors need to see us rejoicing, delighting, and celebrating in the Good News. Easter is a celebration, death has been defeated, Jesus is victorious, eternity is secure, and there is hope beyond the grave. Let's rejoice! 

Happy Easter Rainier Valley Church Family!

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Training - Working with Kids in Trauma

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Naara Taylor will be with us after the service on April 28th to lead a training on working with kids in Trauma.

This training is open to everyone. Naara's focus will be providing both the background on how being in trauma affects the brain & child development as well as tools / management strategies to use when working with kids who have gone through trauma.
For more info contact Kids Ministry Pastor Steve Pratt

How Christians Understand Feelings and Emotions

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NEW WORKSHOP - Saturday, May 25th 10am-1pm at Rainier Valley Church

How Much Should Christians Care About Their and Others’ Feelings and Emotions?

Emotions and feelings are part of God’s image in humankind. But they are that part of our humanity that is most misunderstood. And because we don’t understand them, we don’t manage them well.

When we ignore, deny or block our emotions, this leads to depression, anxiety, panic attacks, addictions, sarcasm or inability to also feel positive emotions like joy, surprise, excitement.

When we dwell in unpleasant emotions, this leads to depression, anxiety, addictions, or we make decisions based on our feelings – we let them control our lives.

We need to learn when specific emotions appear and we need to understand their message. And the message can be one of these three: 1) our needs are unmeet, 2) we misinterpreted the reality/event and we need to reinterpret, 3) the situation is difficult and we should either find better mechanisms to cope or change the situation.

In dealing with others’ feelings and emotions, it’s easy to situate ourselves on extremes: ignoring, denying or, the other extreme: feeling responsible for others’ happiness. The balanced way is to care enough about the person and learn how to show this by being present and emphatic, normalizing their feelings, being supportive and encouraging.

I invite you for a 3-hour workshop where we will:

Better understand our emotional life: the connection between body, soul, spirit, and the distinction between emotions, feelings and moods. We will learn from the people of the Bible how to deal with our emotions and how to use them for our spiritual growth and for more authentic and deeper connection with people.

Look at some specific unpleasant emotions (fear, sadness, anger, shame), understand when they appear, how to decode their message and how to manage them well.

Learn how to connect emotionally with dear ones and how to better support each other when we deal with difficult situations and unpleasant feelings.

Service Teams Update

Hello church family! If you were in church on Sunday, you heard Nate walk us through our new operational model for Sunday service. Here’s an overview in case you missed it!

What are they?

Service teams are groups of members and volunteers who will set up and tear down church every Sunday. Rather than maintaining individual ministry teams for each task (make coffee, put out signs, etc.), we are establishing five (5) service teams who are equipped to do those tasks.  

Why the change?

The elders of RVC have committed to improve the internal health of the church in 2019. One of the ways we will accomplish that goal is to take the weight of setting up for a Sunday service off a few individuals, and instead, collectively share the load with all people who call RVC home.

What will Service Teams do on Sundays?

  • Tidy up the lobby and outside the entrance (taking out trash, moving tables, etc.)

  • Put out sandwich boards around the block

  • Make coffee and setting up beverage table

  • Set up welcome desk by the front door

  • Set up communion table in the sanctuary

  • Set up and staff the nursery

  • Welcome people at the door from 9am to 10am

  • Offer communion during service

  • Pass the offering plates during service

  • Clean up after service for all of the above

Who will lead each team?

Each Service Team will need one volunteer leader to help coordinate communication and tasks. This person can be anyone who decides that they have a heart to serve RVC in this way.

How often?

All five service teams will be scheduled on a weekly rotation, which means each team will serve about once a month.

What’s next?

  • We will have service team trainings over the next two Sundays, 4/7 and 4/14 to cover the basics of what’s needed. Please plan to attend at least one of these sessions.

  • Each service team will be set up with a Slack channel this week. If you’re not on Slack yet, you’ll receive an email invitation to join.

  • Service Teams will start the Sunday after Easter, April 28th.

Thanks, and please let me know if you have any questions!

Kari Culumber

operations@rainiervalleychurch.com

Weekly Update 4/10

Announcements:

  • The next Hope Place Graduation is tonight, Wednesday, April 10th. If you’re able to help with childcare at the event, please register here or contact Irene Yung (Xoxoirene@gmail.com).

  • RVC will be hosting a Good Friday Service on Friday, April 19th at 7:00pm.

  • Join us to celebration the Resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday, April 21st. There will be lots of fun activities after church, so please invite your friends and family to join us!

    • If you are interesting in helping to serve on Easter please contact the following team leaders to get signed up.

      • Outreach Team (Hillary Dunham)

      • Welcome Team (Sam Bretz)

      • Activities Team (Yee Feng)

  • Kids ministry is hosting a training on Sunday, April 28th after service to help volunteers better understand how to minister to children who’ve experienced trauma. Please reach out to Steve Pratt (Steveryanpratt@gmail.com) if you have questions.

  • The Dunhams are hosting a new Community Group in their home in the Skyway area every other Wednesday night from 6:00pm-8:00pm. Enjoy snacks, fellowship, discussion, and prayer with this new community group. Everyone is welcome and it’s a great time to get connected as this group gets started! Please contact Hillary Dunham (hgrigel@msn.com) for details.


Discussion Questions  

“The Grace of God” from Matthew 20:1-16

What makes the grace of God in Christianity altogether unique among the religions of the world?

Pastor Kyle shared the story of John Newton, the author of the famous hymn amazing grace. Newton never got over the grace God showed in saving a wretch like him.

What historical stories of grace have inspired and encouraged you personally?

How can we cultivate an attitude of thankfulness that will guard us against entitlement?

Read Matthew 20:1-16. How would you summarize Jesus’ parable of the workers in the vineyard in your own words?

The workers who have worked the entire day ar jealous of the workers who came at the 11th hour and received a full days wage. We can often become the blessing-police, trying to decide if God has blessed people rightly and fairly yet God gives different blessings to different people. Where are areas in your own life that you can easily become jealous of the blessing of others?

How can we rejoice with those who are rejoicing even when we didn’t experience their same blessings and wanted them?

What practical ways can we guard against jealous in our own hearts and minds?

What are the results of jealous that is continuously fed over time?

How can rightly understanding grace help cultivate thankfulness, gratitude, and contentment in our hearts and in our community groups?   

How can we be praying for one another this week?

NEW Community Group on Wednesdays

Hillary and Allan Dunham - Wednesdays | Skyway 

The Dunhams are hosting a new Community Group in their home in the Skyway area every other Wednesday night from 6:00pm-8:00pm. Enjoy snacks, fellowship, discussion, and prayer with this new community group. Everyone is welcome and its a great time to get connected as this group gets started! Please contact Hillary Dunham (hgrigel@msn.com) for details.

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Weekly Update 3/26

Happy Tuesday, church family!

Announcements:

  • The next Hope Place Graduation is on Wednesday, April 10th. If you’re able to help with childcare at the event, please register here or contact Irene Yung (Xoxoirene@gmail.com).

  • RVC will be hosting a Good Friday Service on Friday, April 19th at 7:00pm.

  • Join us to celebration the Resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday, April 21st. There will be lots of fun activities after church, so please invite your friends and family to join us!

  • Kids ministry is hosting a training on Sunday, April 28th after service to help volunteers better understand how to minister to children who’ve experienced trauma. Please reach out to Steve Pratt (Steveryanpratt@gmail.com) if you have questions.

New Community Groups and Times:

Sabalza CG - Sundays | UGM Building 

Ken Sabalza's Community Group has moved to meeting on Sundays directly after church in the breakfast area. Anyone and everyone is welcome. Come enjoy some good food and fellowship as we share our lives, discuss the sermon, and pray together. The Sabalza CG is hoping to welcome in new folks! Please contact Ken (rsabalza@hotmail.com) for details.

 

Hillary and Allan Dunham - Wednesdays | Skyway 

The Dunhams are hosting a new Community Group in their home in the Skyway area every other Wednesday night from 6:00pm-8:00pm. Enjoy snacks, fellowship, discussion, and prayer with this new community group. Everyone is welcome and its a great time to get connected as this group gets started! Please contact Hillary Dunham (hgrigel@msn.com) for details.

 

Discussion Questions:

Pastor Kyle shared five hopes he has for Rainier Valley Church based on Matthew 18. What hopes do you have for Rainier Valley Church? What do you pray that God would do in us and through us in the future?

Childlike Humility (18:1-4)

·       What does it mean to become like a child in verse 3?  What is the difference between being childish and childlike? 

·       How does the requirement of humility in 1-4 compare to our culture's view of humility?  

Christian Holiness (18:5-9)

·       How does God use the similarities and differences of the church with the world to reach the world? 

·       Why is it necessary for temptations to come to Christians (verse 7) and what "good" could temptation do in our life? 

·       What areas of our own lives do we need to make war on sin and take radical measures to walk in holiness?  

Christlike Compassion (18:10-14)

·       When have we been tempted to despise other believers? How can we cultivate the priorities and the compassion of God in our own hearts? Since Jesus is our good shepherd who leaves the 99 to seek out the lost 1, what opportunities exist for us to follow this example? 

Mutual Accountability (18:15-20)

·       The scriptures outline a clear process for how to deal with conflict in the church community. If we don't deal with conflict, we're likely to excuse, become bitter, and/or gossip about others. How can unresolved conflict create division and drama?

·       How would you explain the process of church discipline outlined in this passage? The goal of church discipline should always be restoration not condemnation, so why is it important that we have the right attitude and motivation in conflict resolution?  

Gospel Forgiveness (18:21-35)

·       What happening to our  hearts, relationships, and spiritual vitality if we continue withholding forgiveness from those who have hurt us? 

·       What is the main point of Jesus' parable of the unforgiving servant? Why is forgiveness not optional but foundational for Christians? Why is forgiveness a choose and not just a feeling? How are forgiveness and reconciliation different? 

Let's be praying to grow in humility, push forward in holiness, have lives marked by Christlike compassion and mutual accountability, and that we would show the city what a community of Gospel forgiveness looks like.  

Weekly Update 3/22

My apologies on the late email this week. Here are our announcements!

Announcements:

  • We have made some changes to our service order on Sunday morning. Please bring your children (3 years old and up) in to the auditorium at 10:00am so they’re able to worship with us. Kids will be dismissed after worship songs and before announcements, and parents can pick them up after the worship service is over.

  • We have a lot of exciting activities planned after our Easter service on 4/21. If you're interested in helping serve please contact Yee Feng or Jason Lischke.

  • There will be a meeting with community group leaders this upcoming Sunday after church. If you’re currently leading a CG or have feedback you’d like to share, please attend!

      

 

 

Discussion Questions:

  • What's an example of a story when you missed something important without even knowing it? 

Don’t Miss Jesus in Your Own Agenda (6:1-12)  

  • Jesus had already performed countless miracles and given many signs to authentic his ministry and identity, what do you think is behind the request of both the Pharisees and the Sadducees that Jesus give them another sign? 

  • How can you tell the difference between someone asking honest questions and someone using questions to avoid the truth?

  • The disciples are anxious and caught up on focusing on groceries and they're missing Jesus' teaching because of their own agenda. In what ways can our own personal agenda actually obscure what Jesus is doing in our lives? How have you experienced this dynamic in your own life?    

Don’t Miss Jesus In the Cultural Noise  (6:13-20) 

  • There is a lot of cultural noise surrounding the person of Jesus, every major world religion has a perspective and viewpoint on how Jesus is and what he has done. As you think about your coworkers, friends, and family that don't know, love, and follow Jesus, what is their perspective on who Jesus is and what factors shaped their understanding of Jesus? 

  • What does it mean for you and I to have the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven and what difference does this make in our understanding of Church, evangelism, discipline, membership, etc?  

Don’t Miss Jesus in Difficult Circumstances (16:21-28) 

  • Peter rebukes Jesus for explaining that he, as the Messiah of Israel, will be crucified, killed, and raised up on the third day.  We laugh at Peter rebuking God but we often can miss Jesus in the difficult circumstances of our own lives. How has God used difficult circumstances in your own life to strengthen your faith? Peter was opposing Jesus mission to die on the cross as the savior of the world, what ways can we oppose God's plans when they require us to walk through difficulty circumstances? 

  • The call of discipleship is one of self-denial. what ways have you to deny self to follow Jesus recently? 

  • What was is it easier or harder to practice self-denial? In a cultural that prioritizes self-actualization over almost everything else, how can Jesus' call to self-denial actually lead to life? 

Don’t Miss Jesus in Your Own Confusion (17:1-13)  

  • This is a famous section of scripture called the transfiguration, where Peter, James, and John see Jesus in his revealed glory.  Peter misses Jesus in his own confusion in two ways, (1) he wanted to just stay at a spiritual high-point (17:4) and (2) he missed God clearly working in his life (17:9-13). How can we personally miss what Jesus is doing in our own lives when we focus on the mountain top experiences and neglect, minimize,  and avoid the valleys?

  • Peter didn't understand what Jesus' transfiguration meant because it didn't line up with his expectations and his timeline. How can we miss what God is doing by demanding that met our specific expectations or move according to our specific timeline? 

Don’t Miss Jesus in Self-Sufficiency (17:14-23)

  • Jesus disciples were trying to cast out a demon in their own strength, without prayer, fasting, drawing near to God, humbling themselves, relying on God's power and not their own? What are times in your life when you have tried to live by your own self-sufficiency?

  • How does Self-sufficiency rob us of true spiritual power? How does Mountain-moving have more to do with the object of our faith and not the quantity of our faith?

  • If we strengthen what we feed and weaken what we starve how can we strengthen our faith and weaken our self-sufficiency?

  • The young man was healed instantly when the disciples brought him to Jesus, praying for others is a way that we can bring them before Jesus. Who do we need to bring before Jesus this week in our prayers?