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We will be meeting at Chapel of Our Lady (in the Presidio, address on slide) on 8/18 ONLY (to let Roosevelt prepare the day before school starts), at the same time 10:30am-12pm (two Sundays away). There is plenty of paid parking, but we encourage you to come early, and perhaps you can even find a free spot.

Sunday Recap for August 4, 2019:
A New Beginning

Mission Highlight: Thank you, Michelle and Marc for sharing this week! Michelle, who was a long time member of Christ Church and baptized at Christ Church became a full-time volunteer at Hands at Work, our partners in Africa, along with her husband Marc. We are blessed to partner with them, and as they were visiting the States, here is what they shared if you missed it:

MICHELLE: Good morning, Christ Church family. My husband Marc and I are both long term volunteers with Hands at Work. We are currently based in Zambia, where we live and serve together in community with other international volunteers as well as local Africans. Each time we’re back in San Francisco, we’re grateful for the opportunities to worship with the Christ Church community, and we appreciate your continued love and support.
 
For us in Hands at Work, we have committed ourselves to continually learning and growing. We think that we, and all of us, are at our best when we are open to continually learning, recognizing that we do not have it all figured out. That is to say, we recognize that we are on a journey. We are not wanting to stand still and protect the ground we are on. Rather, we know that we have been called by Christ to follow Him. And, like we see in the Gospels and throughout scripture, it is through the journey itself that we will learn what it means to live in the presence of God, trusting in His goodness. It is through the journey that we deepen in our hope for where we are going, that it is where the fullness of the presence of God dwells and where all of our and the world’s deep wounds will be healed, where there will be no more tears. And through this, we will be transformed to fully receive and to give love and care. We have the privilege to serve in a ministry full time. But, even still, it is so easy for us to turn inwardly and focus in on our own ambitions, desires, and plans or to put at the center of our lives the loss, pain, and suffering that we and others experience.
 
MARC: This turning inward is such a natural response. ‘Journeying’ with God and others sounds great, but I have problems that are right in front of me and need immediate attention. So we return to the patterns of our culture and how we are made up and we strive to take control and to find solutions. This can happen so subtly that we are often even unaware of it until we step back and realize that we are being consumed by fear, anxiety, doubt, and despair.
For Michelle and I, it has been a challenging year and challenging to keep our eyes on God and outwardly focused. Out of this, we want to share with you this morning a story of a young boy whose response to our visit to him has been teaching us a lot.
 
We don’t often get to go into the community together, but we had the opportunity a few months ago when we visited a community called Kamakonde, which is on the outskirts of a large city called Kitwe. Kamakonde is a township with high unemployment and a lot of challenges.
 
While we were there, we visited a 5-year-old boy named Lazarus. He lives with his mom, two siblings, and his niece. Life is very difficult for the family. There are a lot of broken and unhealthy relationships in the family. His mom works very hard: transporting 150 pounds of sand in a wheelbarrow half a mile for the equivalent of 15 cents per wheelbarrow. She makes a dollar twenty-five a day. Their mud-brick house is slowly breaking down and requires a lot of repairs each year to make it through the rains. The family sleeps on a few old rice sacks with only a couple blankets to keep warm. Life is difficult. In the midst of this, my mind goes immediately to all the things that need to be solved: the house repairs, the counselling that his family needs, getting better schools in the community, what needs to happen to develop the economy so that his mom can provide better for the family… The list goes on…
But I took some time just to spend with Lazarus, playing in the dirt, drawing pictures (though not very well) of cars and elephants, and whatever else I could think of. After our visit, we walked with Lazarus and his sister to the care point. As we were walking, he kept looking up at me with a big smile and saying something in Bemba (which is the local language). My Bemba is terrible, so I asked my colleague Michael what he was saying. And Lazarus was inviting us all back to his home village, which is alongside of a big lake, so that we could eat fish together. That simple gesture of welcome, hospitality, and generosity from a 5-year-old boy, him inviting us to participate in something he cherished so much, it broke me. I wish I could adequately describe our surroundings where he asked me this: in the middle of Kamakonde surrounded by drunkenness and despair. And here is this ray of light piercing that darkness. Here is this simple act of goodness that cuts through all the challenges that he and his family face and all the things that I think need to be solved by my efforts. 
 
I think these kinds of moments happen frequently, but we often miss them because we are so full of our desires, worries, and hurts. I don’t say this to make us feel guilty. Part of our journeying well is to learn how to empty ourselves, to give all of these to Christ, trusting them with Him, to become vulnerable, and to be open to being shaped by God, through our encounters with others. And in this, to not respond as much from our instinct of, ‘there is something here to be solved’ but towards receiving and giving love and care.
 
MICHELLE:  Please pray with us. Heavenly Father, we thank you for your unfailing love and compassion. We thank you that you sent your son to the poor and marginalized, to the broken and sinful, to bring hope to all of humanity. And we thank you for the continued presence of your Spirit in us and among us. We pray that you would help us to be caring people and a caring community – to be willing to empty ourselves to participate in each other’s pain and to share in our brokenness and suffering; not with the intention to solve problems or to find cures, but to give witness to your presence, your faithfulness, and your hope in our lives. We pray for your church this morning - we pray for our brothers and sisters in Africa and in Mcheneka – the Care Workers, Care Givers, and Children, we pray for those in this city who are suffering and going through difficulties, and we pray for each person gathered here today: that your presence will be felt near to them, that your blessing will be over them, and that you will use your people, that you will use us, to love and care for those around us. We pray all of these things in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
This Week's Sermon: “A New Beginning" (Exodus 1:1-14)
 

“The last thing to say about our approach to interpreting Exodus is that it must be practical. In order for Israel’s journey out of Egypt to become part of our own pilgrimage, we must apply its spiritual lessons to our own daily walk with God. God has given us the book of Exodus, as he has given us every book in the Bible, for our practical benefit.”
—Philip Graham Ryken, Exodus: Saved for God’s Glory
 

Main idea: We all need to be reshaped

Sermon Slides / Sermon Application Questions
This sermon series: Finding God in the Wilderness

Have any questions, comments, thoughts to share? Please email us!
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