from milk to meat

By Jeremy Kroeker, Minister to FBC Youth
When we first went into shelter in place restrictions for COVID 19, I asked my wife Tara to buy a couple of jars of baby food for me when she went to get groceries. She gave me a puzzled look but went ahead and added it to her list.

First Peter 2:2-3 says, “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.” It’s a word picture used to illustrate the importance of being hungry for growth in our walk with God. This imagery continues in other parts of the Bible, but the challenge is to grow from “milk” to “solid food.” Paul challenged the believers towards growth in 1 Corinthians 3:1-2 by telling them that they were “mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready.” Similarly, the writer of Hebrews had some harsh words for Christians who were not making the effort to grow. He said this about them in Hebrews 5:12-14: “by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.”

I wanted to use the baby food that I asked Tara to buy me for a video illustration, but, 8 months later, the jars are still sitting in our cabinet unused. My goal was to encourage our students to use the time away from our normal Youth activities to get into the Bible and prayer on their own, and not rely solely on church or our Youth ministry to feed them. I never made the video, but my challenge remains.

Even though we’ve all created new routines over the past few months, this is still a great time to start new habits or set new priorities, especially in our personal time with God. Also, the New Year (quickly approaching) provides a chance for a fresh start for new goals. Daily time with God through prayer and Bible reading helps us grow from spiritual “milk,” being fed to us by church, to spiritual “meat,” or solid food, that we dig into on our own. To help with this, our Youth ministry delivers digital devotions each week to follow up our Sunday Bible study lessons, and our Student Leaders are trying their best to connect with their fellow students to encourage them to get into a devotional reading plan through the Bible app or other resources that the students can do together. (Side note: Our children’s ministry has also been sending resources to families in the mail each month that can be used as follow up devotions for the lessons they are learning in Sunday school.) Whether it’s these resources and suggestions, or just spending a moment praying each day, any step that you take to spend time with God on your own will help you draw near to Him and will help you grow into a more mature Christian.

Our Youth devotions can be accessed by subscribing to our text updates (text “@fbcepyouth” to 81010), through our @fbcepyouth Instagram account, or by contacting me directly (jkroeker@fbcep.com or 915-203-1231). In addition to this, our 222 Youth Mentoring/Discipleship Program helps high school students get into God’s Word and prepares them to help others do the same. If you are interested in learning more about this, contact me any time.

Let’s all take steps of growth to move from “milk” to “meat”!

holiday missions opportunities

This holiday season, we encourage families and individuals to get involved and fill the needs of our community.

Living Christmas Tree

The Living Christmas Tree is going virtual this year! It will be streamed live once on Christmas Eve and twice on Christmas Day on our YouTube channel. This time honored tradition is special to our church family and community, and we look forward to spreading the love and the life of Jesus even further this Christmas season to our online community. Remember to watch and to share with your loved ones.

Jesus' Birthday

By Martha Jackson, Minister to Preschool & Children
As I’ve thought recently about how the Children’s Ministry will celebrate Christmas this year, I was reminded that the Christmas season gives each of us the opportunity to help our children fall in love with Jesus and understand that He is the reason for the season.

This year families will have fewer activities and events to attend. I suspect this means we will have more time for family traditions and celebrations in the home.  I encourage you to involve your children in the fun of making cookies, decorating your home, setting up your nativity scene and wrapping gifts. As you dive into your family’s traditions (or as you make new ones!), I encourage you to use the time to remind your children why we celebrate. Be intentional about pointing out Jesus to your kids no matter their age. Emanuel is a gift to us from God. That is the reason for our Christmas celebrations!

This year FBC Children’s Ministry will celebrate our yearly birthday party for Jesus on Sunday, December 13th during our weekly Zoom Sunday School. Even if your child hasn’t previously attended a Zoom session, I hope your family will connect that Sunday. More details will be available on our website.

Christmas will be different this year. May that difference be a blessing for you and your family.

Lastly, this season blesses us with many ways to show our love to others the way God commands us to do. I hope this Christmas your family will find ways to celebrate the gift of Jesus’ birth by sharing God’s love with others. 

upward basketball & cheerleading

UPWARD Basketball and Cheerleading is a high-energy ministry where children learn teamwork, sportsmanship, and Godly principles for daily living. Gear up for an all new 2021 season!

**Note: Some dates have changed.**

Hurricane Relief.

The Colombian islands of San Andrés, Providence, and St. Catalina were hard hit by Hurricane Eta and Iota. Thousands of families on these Islands are still without homes or water. Learn how you can help.

New Members

Erick and Jordan Jimenez by letter.
Reta Cook by statement.

congratulations

Brendan John Haynes
Grandparents: Chris and Jorie Licking
Parents: Jenny and Calvin Haynes

sympathy

The family of Bill Wickline.
Larry Hogsed in the passing of his wife, Norma Hogsed.
Nelda Parker in the passing of her husband, Charles Parker.
Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice; let the sea roar, and all that fills it;
—Psalm 96:11

november giving