Thursday, 02 June 2011 06:25
Last Updated on Tuesday, 07 June 2011 06:32
Written by Jimmy Allen
On Memorial Day weekend, the Greater Hartford church gathered on Sunday, May 29, to enjoy God’s beautiful day and worship Him together outdoors at Elizabeth Park.
Activities for the 11 AM service began well before the appointed hour. Harry Tulier, Lavon Woods, Dale Thompson, Jen and Ben Beland and others gathered at our church building to load up sound equipment and kid’s kingdom supplies to drive over to the park at about 9:30 AM. Mark Russell brought the generator. The song leaders practiced in the shade off to the side early. Russel Clark showed up with the communion supplies. A host of volunteers serve gladly each week, but it is especially needed as we take what is usually an indoor worship and place it outside.
As usual, we began with singing familiar songs in an upbeat fashion. College students Oliver Lester and Morgan Green welcomed us and shared several announcements. Joe Diehl, another college student visiting on this day from Buffalo, spoke powerfully preparing our hearts for the communion.
The lesson preceding contribution was entitled “The Day of Grace” from Joel 2:18-32 . Including shirt-tearing, ash-dumping and Bible reading, the theme focused on God’s grace found in material, emotional and spiritual blessings. God allows us to go through hard times to humble us. He calls us to repentance to change us. Ultimately He thrills to providing grace in many ways.
Joel 2 was perhaps one of Peter’s favorite passages and he used it in the keynote address to set the stage for 3,000 responding to God and receiving his mercy (Acts 2:15-21 ; 38 – forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit).
Following the service, the day was just getting geared up as food, volleyball, ultimate Frisbee and soccer took over the park. Several had to leave the grounds a little early to head over for Wayne Yeldell’s 1:30 PM baptism at the building. But many others soaked up the sun and the fellowship deep into the day.
God reveals Himself in His Word. He also shows Himself in nature. On May 29, we got to see, touch, taste, feel and hear Him in all of His glory!