Page 1

December 2012

MESSENGER The Prince of Peace

!

How important is peace to you? I don't mean world peace, I'm not that deep! I mean that peace that exists between two people; peace that nurtures communication and a deepening relationship; peace which causes you never to need to question if you are liked, or even loved. That type of peace brings joy and a real sense of blessing. O'happy man...with such a peace in your life! ! Did you know that the Bible tells us that without faith in Jesus we are seen by God as His enemies! Romans 5:10 says, "When we were God's enemies, we were reconciled to Him through the death of His Son..." I remember when I had a particular "enemy". Sometimes I lost sleep thinking about him. Thankfully, God convinced me to end the feud and reach out to him. That's what God did for us. As John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world that He sent His one and only Son..." That's Christmas! Christmas is the coming, the birth, of God's Son. Why? To offer us that incredible, lasting peace with God. No longer an enemy, but one of the "beloved". No longer an enemy but an adopted child into His family! ! At this time of year, we at WCCC sing Christmas carols till we can't sing any more. I love them all, but who can deny the words of "Hark the Herald.� Hark! The herald angels sing, "Glory to the new born King: Peace on earth, and mercy mild, God and sinner reconciled." !

On Christmas, God sent us...peace.

!

Merry Christmas!

Pr. Rick

Christmas Celebration Christmas Caroling - Saturday, December 1 - 5pm Christmas Program - Sunday, December 16 - during 10:30am worship Christmas Sunday Service - Sunday, December 23 - 10:30am Christmas Eve Service - Monday, December 24 - 4pm at church

[1]


THE BAPTISM ‘S

Toiletries for the Homeless All the sunny weather we’ve been having in Southern California might make us forget that we do have a winter with rain and cold. Let’s not forget the homeless who shelter down in various churches in the San Gabriel Valley during the winter season. Remember the toiletries we asked you to collect on your motel/hotel stays? We will again begin collecting them in a tub in the foyer beginning in December. Nurture & Care Ministry

Operation Christmas Child 2012 Thanks to you and a group of volunteers who met for a “Packing Party” to fill boxes on a Saturday morning, this year we sent over 320 boxes to show God’s love and our compassion to children around the world. Our efforts along with thousands of other churches enable Operation Christmas Child to give this gift of love to millions of children in over 100 countries throughout the world. And while the number of boxes we send may seem small when compared to the total, to the child who receives it, it is indeed a precious gift of hope and love.

[2]


The missions

FUNFEST 2012

Many of us know Brent from the San Diego Holiness Church where he served the Lord for several years as associate/ youth pastor both to Pastor REDACTED Brian Nakamura and Pastor Ichibei Honda. It was here that God gave him a heart for Turkey, where he has already served for about two years. A member of People International A Place Chosen by God since 2001, Brent will, with Irina, Antioch, Ephesus, Galatia . . . spend half the time evangelizing Tarsus? All are places that non-believers and the other half figured so prominently in the discipling new believers. Both Apostle Paul’s missionary missionaries have a very clear journeys, that gave rise to The vision of what it will take to win Early Church, and began the the trust and friendship of those spreading of God’s Word to the with whom they will share God’s rest of the world. All are located Word and love. And everything in modern day Turkey, a country they do will be for that purpose. vitally important for its strategic “Sometimes, people come location–it links Asia and through who are a blessing for Europe, an ideological position us to minister to.” “bridging East with West,” its access to oil, a military second Pastor Rick, Worship Service, only to Israel’s in the Middle Nov. 25, 2012 East and second only to the U.S. in NATO. 98 percent of the Brent and Irina King are such a couple. It will be a blessing for Turkish people are Muslim. WCCC to support their Brent and Irina King–A Couple missionary journey. Chosen by Him Brent went to Urbana ’96 which led to a short-term mission to Missions Team of WCCC Russia, followed later by a mission to Kazakhstan. Brent was from Corona. He met another missionary to Kazakhstan from Russia: Irina. They were wed six month ago.

Brent and Irina King Missionaries to Turkey with People International

[3]


The Invisible The human brain and its capacity for thought is one of God’s amazing creations…While our minds are miniscule in comparison to the capabilities of God’s mind but it does provide us with a glimpse of how awesome God is. The human brain is capable of processing unbelievable amounts of information. Dharmendra Modha, director of cognitive computing at the IBM Almaden Research Center said in a speech in March 2009, “We have no computers today that can begin to approach the awesome power of the human mind.” However, it is commonly quoted that we only use approx. 10% – 15% of our brain capacity each day to process the input from the world around us. Processing images and abstract things like human emotion and pain takes a lot more than processing simple yes / no black & white answers. Processing solely on this bit level (sorry computer jargon) allows us to close off the thought process for small and large decisions and whether or not we need to process more. I think that we as human beings do this because it is expedient and at times we just get lazy. It is easy to process the events of “stranger in line” and therefore no need to converse. Or, “Mom”…talk later. Processing the abstractness of emotions and pain are brain exercises that we shy from normally. It takes effort and work. However, a consequence of this is that we are surrounded by a sea people that are Invisible to us but would be clearly seen if we were willing to process at a deeper level of human interaction.

many guys were from Home Boy Industries. These were all guys looking to change their lives and move away from gang life and violence that had put them in prison. My initial thoughts were, whoa, perhaps I should enroll elsewhere for the classes. However, what I learned was that I was one of the most feared people in class. Not because of my amazing physique (we all know that) but because of my perceived status in society. They were afraid to talk to me and even ask for help, because they did not feel worthy to speak to me. Once the walls were broken through, some good relationships were established. Most of these guys if I crossed paths with them on a dark street would put me on alert. However, because I was thrown into an environment that made it necessary to interact with these class mates, I have a much different view on things. Some of the things that made these guys invisible to me are now gone. Fear makes us do unreasonable things at times. Other times we let the busyness of our lives control the situation. Never mind that Satan does not want us to be effective Christians. It happened to me as I witnessed a mom having difficulty with her son in line for a Krispy Kreme treat. I thought to intervene and offer a comment to provide support. However, I did not. Moments later, she was being reprimanded in the parking lot by a police officer for rough treatment towards her son. Perhaps I missed an opportunity to witness and make a bit of a difference, I don’t know, I just know I did not engage and that person was invisible to me until a scene in the parking lot caused me to “see”. God continues to work on me I know, He is causing my eyes to see, ears to hear and brain to work (at times). Sometimes I don’t see, hear or think very well…but honestly guys, I’m trying.

Why would God give us these wonderful things we call our brains and have all this unused capability? I believe this is all part of the choices we make and what He allows us to do. He wants us to be fully engaged with our world and the people around us…to do all this and be equipped to do so, He gave us the capability…It is OUR choice to not use the capabilities given to us.

Norm Ong, Deacon of Nurture & Care

There are lots of reasons why we choose not to go deep. Sometimes it is familiarity and complacency when the person is there and you see them (or talk frequently) and you think well…tomorrow. Case in point my mom, who deals every day with the loss of my dad over two years ago. I neglect to keep up with her until the pain becomes quite evident. Fear comes into play too. I recently took several classes at the Los Angeles Skill Center in east LA. In these classes [4]


Funfest 2012 Doing our own take of “Bento Boxes�, the Food and Fellowship Committee and a host of volunteers put on our annual Funfest to the delight of a record 250 + members and guests. The barbecue was fired up for chicken and beef teriyaki skewers, along with rice, homemade potato salad and fresh fruit for the adults and hot dogs for the kids, as well as a dedicated dessert room filled with cookies and cakes provided by the Harvesters. The Nichigo members served a variety of flavors of shave ice including kintoki (sweet beans and milk) that provided a refreshing relief from the hot September sun. Complementing our need for food, the Funfest committee provided activities for the adults and wonderfully increased number of children and young adults. Our young kids played to their hearts content in three inflatable jumpers, enjoyed the water balloon toss, a knock over the cans game, and a ping pong ball game for pet goldfish created and run by the Fountain group. The collegeyoung adult committee was creative in building a beanbag toss game and life sized Jenga game enjoyed by the youth and adults alike. For adults we had line dancing in the Social Hall, Bingo in Room 10, live music provided by the worship teams, and a raffle with many neat prizes. If you were there, see if you can find yourself in some of the photos to remember what a great time you had. If you missed it, there is always next year! !

An Intense Bingo session

[5]

WCCC Members Playing Music


WCCC

NONPROFIT U.S. POSTAGE PAID COVINA CA PERMIT NO. 1

1100 East Cameron Ave West Covina, CA 91790-3891

DATED MATERIALS Address Correction Requested

West Covina Christian Church Senior Pastor Reverend Rick Iwanaga Associate Pastor Reverend Kory Wenell Nichigo Pastor Reverend Yoshinosuke Nakao

English Dept. (626) 917-0743 Japanese Dept. (626) 917-0652 FAX Number (626) 917-0663 Church OďŹƒce E-mail: info@westcovinacc.com Church Website: www.westcovinacc.com

Sunday Morning Ministries at WCCC Sunday Morning Prayer 8:45 to 9:15 a.m Japanese Speaking Service 9:00 to 10:00 a.m Sunday School Classes 9:15 to 10:15 a.m English Speaking Service 10:30 to 11:45 a.m The WCCC webmaster is Andrew Todd, articles for the WCCC website and/or Messenger are welcome from any ministry or individual within the WCCC family. For the Messenger, please submit articles by the 10th of every month for publication in the following month to Andrew at atodd@westcovinacc.com

December 2012  

December 2012 issue of the Messenger, the newsletter of West Covina Christian Church