Dear Liberty family & friends
How’s your “inbox” looking these days?
Oh yes, I know. It’s been brimming over with “can’t miss this!” offers and last-minute reminders for ordering and shipping gifts.
The open-ended details can become quite a long list in these weeks before Christmas. Add to that, an emergency or an unexpected delay or detour in your plans, and there are certainly plenty of ways that stress can rise.
So, one of the ways I see congregational life serving the mission of our King is to actively encourage a very realistic view of life. We’re in this together. Faith flourishes best in an environment of honesty and candor. Steep paths along jagged rocks are so much easier to navigate when your friends are “all in” with you for the climb.
That’s another enriching aspect of the simple symbolism of Advent.
It’s striking that Candle #2 for Advent is about those mysterious messengers who bring the most wondrous news of Jesus birth to a sin-plagued planet.
What could be more dazzling and delightful than having an angel show up unexpectedly in your room? We marvel at Mary’s encounter for all the right reasons. She was real. Normal. Ordinary.
At a young age that would be (in today’s terms) that of a high school student, Mary had similar desires and dreams as her peers.
Certainly, the one chosen to be “Mom” for Jesus was a virtuous young woman. But that doesn’t mean her life was easy. In fact, virtue is a character quality that shines all the more brightly under life’s pressures.
And what a series of adversities Mary had to face! In each step of her ministry of motherhood, Mary’s faith had to be hammered out on an anvil of life-choices as she and her beloved Joseph learned how to be parents.
For followers of Jesus in Christmas of 2023, we couldn’t ask for a better example of a living faith. How fortunate we are that God’s chosen caretakers of Jesus in his infancy were so obviously ordinary!
It’s not hard to imagine that both of the earthly parents of the promised Messiah may have yearned for more angelic visitations. But the momentous events of Christmas were once-for-all, captivating and unforgettable, and yet, not to be repeated.
In so many ways, the tough path illuminated at first by angelic direction proves the timeless value of what the Apostle Paul later discovered: “For we walk by faith, not by sight.” (II Corinthians 5:7).
May each step you take in your endeavors this season bring an increasing joy as we share the adventure of celebrating the birth of Jesus!
Join us in each of these times together – and let us know any way you or your loved ones need prayer, a visit or a phone call. We’re here for you.
Please lift up Dianne Enoff and her siblings and families in prayer for comfort in the loss of her beloved sister, Bernie McCullough on December 4th. We give thanks for such a beautiful life and the legacy of faith and faithfulness that Bernie has given to all her loved ones, her church family and friends.
Christmas offerings: During each service, including the Birthday Breakfast Sunday, contributions via the offering box are deeply appreciated. In addition, during Candlelight worship, an offering will be received during the service.
As always checks may be made payable to Liberty Church. We also want to thank those who are using online giving as an option for supporting your church. Your contributions via our Giving page are deeply appreciated.
What a joy for the Liberty Ladies Love-in-Action team to have a luncheon/fellowship tomorrow. Any ladies visiting or bringing guests are most welcome to attend tomorrow (and in 2024, the ladies’ luncheons will be on the 2nd Sunday of each month).
~ Schedule of Services ~
Sunday, December 10th ~ Cafe Liberty 9:45 AM & Worship @ 10:15 AM
Advent #2: Angels Candle
Ladies Luncheon ~ immediately following morning service
Sunday, December 17th ~ 10:00 AM Birthday Breakfast for Jesus!
Church family & friends breakfast celebration in the fellowship hall
[No Cafe Liberty service on 12/17/23]
Saturday, December 23rd ~ 6:00 PM Candlelight Christmas Worship
Advent #3: Shepherds Candle
An evening of adoration in honor of Immanuel, God with us
Sunday morning ~ December 24th 2023
10:15 AM Worshiping Together on Christmas Eve DAY!
Advent #4: The Christ Candle
[No Cafe Liberty service on 12/24/23]
Sunday, December 31st, 2023
Cafe Liberty @ 9:45 AM
Worship @ 10:15 AM
Advent #5: Magi Candle
Join us! Launching 2024 on New Years Eve MORNING
[Cafe Liberty RESUMES regular weekly schedule on 12/31/23]
Links for finding Liberty Church online via Liberty’s website or Facebook Live or audio podcast in Spotify:
View the service live online
Listen to past services
“He has done mighty deeds with His arm;
He has scattered those who were proud in the thoughts of their heart.
He has brought down rulers from their thrones
and has exalted those who were humble.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and sent the rich away empty-handed;
He has given help to Israel His servant,
in remembrance of His mercy.”
In His love,
P.O. Box 295
Westminster MD 21158
Pastor’s cell: 410.596.4096