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  • Estrella Montecito - Before Houses

    Be Kind

    How do you navigate seasons like this when the whole world seems to be going crazy, when fear is the predominate emotion for the day in our culture? How do we operate as the body of Christ in this new normal traffic pattern of life?


    Be kind! It is just that simple.


    Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:32 ESV)


    Being kind is contained in what it means to love agape. “Love is … kind” (1 Corinthians 13:4). Kindness applies to everyone, when they deserve it and when they do not. My grandfather used to say that "courtesy is the oil of life.” Think about it. Doesn't It just make life run smoother when you are courteous? Kindness works in exactly the same way. Your life will run smoother, especially in trying times. 


    As you interact with people, being motivated by the Holy Spirit, reach out in kindness. It really will change the circumstances around you. During this time of crisis, choose to be kind. In all your actions toward other people do it in a way that honors them as humans created in the image of God. Choose to be tenderhearted. Try to see things as they do. Put yourself in their place. Feel as they are feeling. Then treat them the way you would want to be treated under the circumstances. Choose to forgive. Even when people have wronged you, work on forgiving, and conduct yourself with that understanding.  This is how we love those around us. Forgiving is one of the most powerful gifts we give to others and it transforms us into the image of Christ. 


    There is too much tension and stress during this time. Choose to transform it in kindness. 


    In these new normal traffic patterns of life, be kind.


    Looking out for one another,


    Denny

    1. We are here Hello church
      1. published a newsletter

        ReadEstrella Mountain Church
        Newsletter April 3, 2020
        Greetings!

        Hello again, friends!


        In case you didn't realize it, today is FRIDAY! Another week completed in our "quarantine" season. I hope you are enjoying the outdoors, your family, and the time. Embrace the time we have to do something different. Keep praying and spending time in the Word, but maybe do it on the patio. Eat some meals outside while it's still so nice. We know what's coming! :)


        Livestream was great last week! Thank you for tuning in. It will be the same this week. Go to our website https://emcaz.org, scroll down to the Livestream box and wait for it to begin at 9am.


        Thank you for your faithfulness and generosity during these uncertain times. Keep your PB&J and water coming. Also, Rick needs grocery bags to hand out sandwiches. You Matter Ministries is very busy. The sanctuary is open Monday and Tuesday, 9am-11am to drop off donations.


        We also have helped our Rocky Point ministry since they can no longer host short term mission trips to work and support the mission.


        If you know of a family in need, please let us know. We want to be the hands and feet of Jesus here where we live.


        We now have an offering drop box just outside the church office. It's placed in front of the Ring camera near the glass door. I will be checking it often.


        I will continue posting a newsletter each Friday in lieu of our Sunday bulletin, so that you can keep informed on all that's happening at EMC. This is new and different for all of us, so please be patient, and if you need anything, please call or email the office at 623.386.0300 and annk@emcaz.org. You can also call or text my cell phone at 623.694.2551. Go to our website at https://emcaz.org/ for updates and information as well.


        Sending much love, many prayers, and hugs!


        Ann Knister

        623.694.2551

        1. Sunrise in Estrella

          The Sun Came Up

          I do the same basic things every morning: make coffee, grab my Bible (now contained in my iPad), sit in my chair that looks out toward the Estrella Mountains, read, study, and pray. Most mornings I get to watch the sun come up and sometimes it is spectacular. This morning was simply normal but the thought struck me that the sun, in fact, came up.  


          In all of the end-of-the-world type of language being spread through the news, day after day in this Coronavirus season, the sun still comes up. God is not finished with us yet.  


          In thinking about this I was reminded of this passage:


          “… the Lord said in His heart … While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.”  (Genesis 8:21-22)


          This is the confidence that we have in Him: the earth remains, the end of the world is not yet, life will move forward as evidenced by the rising of the sun.


          Take the time to notice the simple things in your life. Enjoy the beauty of nature. Stop, look, and take it in. Understand God is in control.


          Look out for one another,


          Denny 

          1. published a newsletter

            ReadEstrella Mountain Church
            Newsletter March 27, 2020
            Greetings!

            Hello friends!


            We pray you are well, and embracing the times that we live in. Look for GOD in all of it. HE is good!


            Life is different right now, and obviously that means we aren't meeting together. Stay connected as much as you can. Call and/or text your friends, neighbors and family. Use FaceTime too so you can see their beautiful faces. Send an encouraging note and/or email. Stop watching the news all day. :) We will get through this together!


            I will be posting a newsletter each Friday in lieu of our Sunday bulletin, so that you can keep informed on all that's happening at EMC. This is new and different for all of us, so please be patient, and if you need anything, please call or email the office at. You can also call or text my cell phone at 623.694.2551. Go to our website at https://emcaz.org/ for updates and information as well.


            I love and miss y'all. Looking forward with HOPE!


            Ann Knister

            623.386.0300

            info@emcaz.org

            1. Estrella Mountain Reflected Through an Irrigated Field

              During Coronavirus - Be Still

              I am sitting in my home office thinking, praying about all that is going on around us. It feels like being trapped in a dream state of a Twilight Zone episode. Nothing seems familiar or real. What I see and experience is fear ruling. The world around us is changing and not toward the safe place we desire it to be. This entire life continuum is surreal. Will I ever be able to wake up? I do not want to do this. I want to go back.

               

              In this season of COVID-19, it is easy to conclude that: our governments, political leaders, medical establishments, and scientists, have the power to take care of all this. At least we behave as if they do. 

               

              As I contemplate the Coronavirus affair, I'm not exactly sure what we are “supposed" to do but, I do have some advice … 

               

              Be Still …at least for a while. 

               

              I know Being Still is counterintuitive to everything that makes logical sense yet this is what God commands us to do. Be Still, continue to Be Still until this season is over. When it is over ... Be Still. 

               

              As I consider these thoughts, Psalm 46 comes to mind (one of my favorites).

               

              Psalm 46:1 says: "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” 

               

              Let me just say this … I need help, and I believe you need help as well. Where is this refuge, strength, and present help when I need it? Where is God?

               

              Psalm 46:10 says: "Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” 

               

              I want God to shepherd the nations and the earth. I want to see it. 

               

              As you read the entire 46th Psalm, the context of these above verses, nations have gone rogue against God, and the created order is bringing devastation upon its inhabitants. Sounds like what is being reported in the news as I type. Nature, in its fallen condition, is bringing devastation (Coronavirus). Nations, with their political aspirations, have gone rogue against each other (over blame and how to fix this mess).

               

              God’s message to us is simple. Be still and know that I am God. We can trust Him in this as He is not blind to our plea. He is good. Being still starts with surrendering to Him because we are powerless to handle this on our own. Remember … mankind, science, medicine cannot alone resolve this. We are completely helpless and dependent on our Father. This understanding is the foundation for prayer. Part of Being Still is crying out to God.

               

              Pray today, and every day, about those things burdening your heart. Pray like a small child asking a good Father, unashamedly, what you want. What is your heart's desire? Pray that desire.

               

              Be Still and Pray