CHRIST UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
In his book Crazy Love, Francis Chan writes, â€œJesus came humbly as a servant, but He never begs us to give Him some small part of ourselves. He commands everything from His followers.â€? Beginning October 9, we will explore this challenge in both worship and through a 7-week study in participating Sunday School classes and HomeGroups. This booklet provides information to help you complete your Connect Card and Commitment Card. Please prayerfully consider how you will participate in the life and ministry of our church in 2012 in the following ways: WORSHIP: Regularly attend one of our four Sunday worship services (see page 3) GROW: Participate weekly in a Sunday School class, HomeGroup, or Bible Study (see pages 3 - 4) SERVE: Identify those ministries where you will serve and/or where you will continue to serve (see pages 4 - 5) GIVE: Make a financial commitment by completing the enclosed Commitment Card and bringing it with you to church on November 13 (see page 6) Please read through this booklet, and visit our website at www.cumcsl.org/unleashinglove for more details. Join us as we focus on how the love of Christ unleashes us to live in a way that is radically different, and how we, as His church, can unleash His love into the world.
TABLE OF CONTENTS INTRODUCTION
WE WANT YOU TO KNOW GOD, CREATE COMMUNITY, AND IMPACT THE WORLD! LET GOD’S LOVE BE UNLEASHED IN YOU AND THROUGH YOU SO YOU CAN HELP OTHERS FIND FULLNESS IN JESUS CHRIST!
The mission of Christ Church is to be people helping people find fullness in Christ. In support of our mission, we ask you to commit to three weekly priorities: worship, grow and serve. • The Worship component asks you to indicate which of our 4 services you will primarily attend. • The Grow component encourages you to participate regularly in a Sunday School class, HomeGroup or long-term Bible study. • The Serve component invites you to identify those ministries in which you will continue to serve or in which you will begin to serve. If you already know where you want to worship, grow, and serve each week, you can indicate it on the Connect Card included in this packet and bring it to worship on Commitment Sunday, November 13, or return it ahead of time by mail. If you aren’t sure, this section will help you discover many of the opportunities available to you. Please contact the appropriate staff member or explore the church website at www.cumcsl.org for more information.
WORSHIP We offer four worship opportunities every Sunday morning: 8:15 am (contemporary), 9:45 am (traditional) and 11:05 am (traditional) in the Sanctuary, and the hub at 11:00 am in the Family Life Center.
GROW Christ Church has a God-inspired dream that every person in worship will be connected to a Sunday School class, HomeGroup or Bible study. If you are not currently connected to a group which meets regularly with the intent of growing together in the knowledge of God’s Word while you grow closer to one another, we encourage you to find such a group. The primary Grow opportunities we offer are Sunday School classes and HomeGroups. We also offer various rotating Bible studies to enrich your ongoing spiritual growth. See the website for more details on our Grow opportunities or contact Jeanne Damon at Jeanne@cumcsl.org or 281.690.4756. Sunday School Classes*
Class Name Adventurers
Age of Attendees 40 – 65
Class Name hub LifeGroup
Age of Attendees 30’s-50’s
50’s – 60’s
60’s – 90’s
30’s and up
50’s – 70’s
Couples for Christ
30’s – 45’s
40’s – 70’s
45 – 60’s
TGIS (Thank God it’s Sunday)
30’s – 60’s
35 – 60’s
55 and up
40’s and up
20 and up
50’s – 70’s
*All Sunday School classes meet at 9:45 am except for the Crusaders Sunday School class which meets at 8:30 am. HomeGroups At present, there are 10 vital and active Christ Church HomeGroups meeting in the Sugar Land area. Most groups gather for 1.5 hours each week. New HomeGroups are forming on a regular basis, and those wishing to participate in a HomeGroup may register at any time by contacting Jeanne Damon.
God’s love for us is mind-boggling! The holy-other, all-knowing, and all-powerful God loves us completely and unconditionally. It should be easy to love a God who loves us so much. It should come natural to us to give back to God when God has already made us to be giving and generous creatures. But sometimes we forget how wonderful and awesome God’s love is! When we do, then it becomes hard for us to be extravagantly generous toward God or anyone else. As you consider your commitment to Christ and His Church in 2012 remember how much God loves you. Trust God’s love for you! Understand that God knew you before you were born and has been with you from the start and will be with you forever. This same God longs for time with you. Give God some of your time. God will treasure it and will bless you by bringing out God’s best in you. Surrender your heart to God’s love! Seek God and let God’s Holy Spirit change you. Let God free you to love, serve, and give without worry or guilt or fear. Risk something for God! Notice the poor, the hungry, the lonely, the destitute. Practice random acts of kindness. Strengthen your “giving muscle”. Love God more than things, and God’s people more than your own comfort. Finally, commit! Commit to sharing your God-given gifts through involvement in the ministries of Christ Church. Commit to a level of financial giving to the general budget of Christ Church that reflects the depth of your love for God and all God has done in your life. Give generously, extravagantly, and joyfully, knowing that the One who deserves your best will honor your gifts and partner with you in unleashing God’s love on a world in need. A Word About Tithing: Many Christians believe that a tithe, or giving the first ten percent of all of one’s income, is still a good guideline and one that pleases God. No doubt the extravagant generosity of giving a “tithe” to the church helps the church accomplish the work God has given it to do. When the average weekly gift of an adult member of Christ Church is only twenty dollars, it’s mind-boggling to consider the magnitude of ministries that could be offered in Christ’s name if only a few tithed. Still, tithing is a challenging idea for most of us. We worry that we won’t have enough for ourselves and our families. Mired in a culture of consumerism, we get caught up in wanting things that aren’t necessarily lifegiving for us. Maybe we’ve decided that ninety percent just isn’t enough for us anymore. When Jesus observed the poor widow give her last two coins, he taught those around Him that even great amounts given dutifully out of abundance are not as precious to God as gladly giving God everything. After all, everything we have, earn, own, and enjoy has been given to us first by God. Therefore when we give, we are returning to God what already belongs to God. 2 Corinthians 9:7 says: “Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” We don’t give to God in order to get something in return. But when we give, we do get blessed. God’s extravagant love toward us gets unleashed in us and overflows onto those around us who desperately need to find fullness in Christ. Believe what Jesus taught; take God’s Word for truth. Abundant blessings come from extravagant generosity toward God and others. Consider taking a step toward tithing in 2012.
GIVING OPTIONS: AT CHRIST CHURCH, THERE ARE SEVERAL CONVENIENT WAYS YOU CAN OFFER YOUR FINANCIAL GIFTS: • OFFERING PLATE DONATIONS DURING SUNDAY MORNING WORSHIP • E-CHECK, DEBIT CARD OR CREDIT CARD GIVING THROUGH THE CHURCH’S WEBSITE • DEBIT OR CREDIT CARD GIVING AT THE KIOSK LOCATED IN THE GATHERING HALL • AUTOMATIC DRAFTS ON DATES YOU CHOOSE • USPS MAIL DONATIONS THANK YOU FOR ALLOWING GOD’S LOVE TO BE UNLEASHED IN YOU. TO HELP MAINTAIN YOUR PRIVACY, PLEASE ENCLOSE THE COMMITMENT CARD IN THE ENVELOPE PROVIDED. BRING YOUR ENVELOPE TO CHURCH ON COMMITMENT SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 13, OR RETURN IT AHEAD OF TIME BY MAIL. YOU CAN ALSO GIVE ONLINE WWW.CUMCSL.ORG/GIVE
2012 BUDGET THE FINANCIAL GOAL FOR 2012 WILL REMAIN THE SAME AS 2011: $3,323,451. THE BUDGET WILL BE RE-EVALUATED AFTER THE TRANSITION IS COMPLETE WITH OUR NEW SENIOR PASTOR.
FALL STEWARDSHIP CAMPAIGN, “UNLEASHING LOVE” DATES OCTOBER 2
Pick up packets. One per household.
“Mind-boggling Love” – focus on the nature of God (Chapter 1) OCTOBER 16 “Trusting Love” – focus on the fact that God is in love with us (Chapters 2 & 3) OCTOBER 23 “Surrendering Love” – focus on returning to our first love, God (Chapter 6) OCTOBER 30 “Risk-taking Love” – focus on being obsessed, in a good way, with God and with Jesus (Chapter 8) NOVEMBER 6 “Committing Love” – focus on giving God our best and most heart-felt love (Chapters 4 & 5) NOVEMBER 9 Fellowship Event – Fuzzy’s Taco Shop on Highway 6 from 5 - 9 pm – see below NOVEMBER 13 Commitment Sunday – “Increasing Love” – focus on living as loving followers of God and Jesus (Chapter 9) NOVEMBER 20 Celebration Sunday – “Celebrating Love” – focus on celebrating the eternal nature of God’s love (Chapter 1)
Fuzzy’s Taco Shop in Sugar Land serves some of the freshest tacos, chili con queso, and burritos in town! Christ Church will hold a fellowship event at Fuzzy’s on November 9 from 5 - 9 pm. Whether you are looking for a cheap dinner, having a night out with the family, or just grabbing a quick bite before choir practice, we invite you to join us there. Fuzzy will donate 10% of the proceeds back to our ministry. The proceeds from this event will benefit East Fort Bend Human Needs Ministry. And, don’t forget your Fuzzy’s cup.
CHRIST UNITED METHODIST CHURCH • 3300 AUSTIN PARKWAY • SUGAR LAND, TX 77479 PHONE: 281.980.6888 • WWW.CUMCSL.ORG • FACEBOOK.COM/CUMCSL people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve