Tuesday, September 15, 2020

2020.09.14 Session Meeting Digest

Hopewell Session Meeting Digest

Stated Meeting, September 14, 2020

The Session continues to be grateful for your prayers, service, and encouragements. The following are some highlights of important items and actions from this month’s regular (stated) meeting.

▪Pastor Hakim led the devotional from Ephesians 4:17–25, noting 12 different words used to communicate the necessity of a theologically-focused ministry. This is because the Lord Jesus—who Himself is our only righteousness before God—is also the only source of true spiritual life, health, growth, or goodness for us (v20–21 and “the life of God” in v18). And, His design is that these things come to us firstly through the understanding/mind. The outcome, when Jesus is truly working out His life in us is a putting off of the old man, and a putting on of the new man. So, the ministry that we elders have been called to is a Christ-sustained-and-saturated, theologically-driven-and-focused, life-transforming-and-forming ministry.

The Treasurer reported a significant month-over-month decrease in the checking balance. This was almost exactly the amount of the cost of the sidewalk project. We would need a couple thousand more dollars to be able both to side the west wall of the Chapel and to upgrade the main entrance of the Fellowship Hall to code. We’re grateful to God for the continued, faithful, and generous provision—including the provision of the grace of giving—that comes in the same boundless generosity that has given us Christ, the indescribable gift.

Although there was no official report from the deacons, the Session noted that the sidewalk project has been received very well and has been a great blessing to many. It was also providentially ready for this past Lord’s Day’s Middle Tennessee monsoon.

We received a request to donate to Bonclarken and are responding that we are praying for the camp and for all churches that are struggling through the recent season. The Session continues to be concerned for the effects upon faithful churches and encourage you to keep up prayer for them. We are grateful for the Lord’s gentle mercy to Hopewell in the midst of it all.

The Session is inviting Pastor MacClelland back to preach on another Lord’s Day soon, October 25 if he is able.

Josiah’s teaching of the Sabbath School class was roundly commended. We’re grateful to God for him and the other men who are making trial of teaching gifts and joyfully looking forward to their teaching.

We are looking forward to the conference. The trap shoot fellowship was confirmed with alternative activities in the Fellowship Hall. Each of you are reminded to make specific invitations to specific people to come celebrate the Lord and His grace.

Elder Patterson is unable to make it to this week’s Presbytery meeting, so the Session delegated Elder Mangum to go in his place. The meeting begins with a worship service at 7p.m. at Fayetteville ARP on Friday, and you are all encouraged to attend. 1720 Huntsville Hwy, Fayetteville, TN 37334.

As usual, there was discussion of a number of shepherding matters, as well as much prayer. One couple that has been struggling came and talked to the Session about it. The Session noted the need to renew commitment to regular shepherding visits, and are grateful for their coming. Anyone who has spiritual difficulty of any kind is encouraged to enlist the aid of the pastor or one of the other elders and not wait for one of the (what should be) routine visits. There is no one who is as “for you” as these men, and especially the Redeemer whose method of shepherding you is through them.

Thank you for praying for us!

Pastor James

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