Announcements

Weekly News-December 14

“…We do not know what to do, but we are looking to you for help.”  2 Chronicles 20:12b

This verse is in the middle of the story of when the Moabites, Ammonites & Meunites declared war on King Jehoshaphat and Judah. The bible tells us that Jehoshaphat was “terrified by this news and begged the LORD for guidance.  He also ordered everyone in Judah to begin fasting.  So people from all the towns of Judah came to Jerusalem to seek the LORD’s help.”  As a united people, they came together before the LORD, asking – desperately pleading – for God to help them and show them what to do.  And God answered them and gave them a HUGE victory that clearly showed that it was HIM who was working among them.  (Read 2 Chronicles 20 if you want all the details.  It’s a really great story!)

Now I don’t have enemies plotting against me or anything, but I too am faced with decisions, choices and unknowns that I have no idea what to do about.  Is asking God for help and wisdom the first thing that I think about doing?  I wish I could say yes.  But the truth is, that’s not always the case.  Yet it should be – and I desire it to be.  Jesus encourages us in Luke 11:9 to “…keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find…”  God loves us so much.  He’s with us every moment, waiting for us to turn our eyes to Him, open our mouths and ASK…ask for help, for wisdom, for calm…for whatever it is we need today.  He was faithful to King Jehoshaphat hundreds of years ago and He continues to be faithful to us today.

Tomorrow (Saturday) at 6:30pm, there is a Hayride & Cookies Youth Social at Matt & Jeramie-Lee’s farm for all junior and senior highs.  Bring a friend and dress for the weather!

This Sunday is the 3rd Sunday of Advent. The children will begin the service again with the ‘Children’s Nativity Processional’.  If your child would like to take part in the processional, please have them meet in the foyer before the service begins.  (Don’t you just love seeing them come down the aisle with the nativity figurines and ringing the bells?!  I sure do! 🙂

We’ll also be continuing to collect non-perishable food for those in our community that are struggling to have enough to eat. (We’ll be bringing those food gifts forward during the offering time.)

Looking forward to a great weekend.  Enjoy yours and we’ll see you on Sunday!
Delora

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Weekly News-December 7

A prayer to share with you when the unexpected or difficult things of life come – even in, or maybe especially in this season of advent when expectations can be high and demands can be great.  A heartfelt prayer written by author Shannan Martin, from her book The Ministry of Ordinary Places.

 

“Show us the real way of worship, and grant us the guts to belong to each other when it’s the hardest.  Teach us to walk in place, memorizing the lay of this unimpressive land and calling it good.  Help us to hang on for the encore, where your best work often waits.

Prone to wander, Lord, we feel it.

But you are here, staring back at us in every face and every scar.  You keep talking to us when we don’t want to listen.  You remind us that you came to be with us, and even when it seemed like you left, you didn’t.

You are here, tuning our hearts to endurance, teaching us a love song for the long haul.

Help us to endure when we feel dog-tired.

Have Your way.”

Amen.


This Sunday is the 2nd Sunday of Advent.  We’ll be lighting the Candle of Peace and having the children begin the service with the ‘Children’s Nativity Processional’.  If your child would like to take part in this, please have them meet in the foyer before the service begins.  We’ll also be continuing throughout the entire Advent Season to collect non-perishable food for those in our community that are struggling to have enough to eat. (We’ll be bringing those food gifts forward during the offering time.)

And then immediately following the morning Worship Service, we’ll be celebrating together with a Wedding Shower Potluck for Jonah Harsch & his fiance Irene.  They are getting married in January and we would love to bless them and their journey with some ‘Malmo love’.  Please bring a main dish and a salad to share for the potluck.  Dessert will be provided.  Everyone is invited!   (And for those who are able, we would love some help in the kitchen with the serving of food and the clean-up in the kitchen.)

Another great Sunday to look forward to!  Enjoy your weekend and I’ll see you soon!

Delora

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Weekly News-November 30

The season of Advent is upon us.  There’s a difference in the air.  Do you see it?  Can you feel it?  Anticipation…of what is to come, of what is waiting for us to discover.  Will we slow down to see it, hear it and be changed by it?

“The wonder keeps us open-eyed, expectant, alive to life that is always more than we can account for, that always exceeds our calculations, that is always beyond anything we can make.”  
~Eugene Peterson, God With Us
Everyone is welcome tomorrow to our Christmas Advent Celebration.  It begins at 4:00pm with an Advent activity for the whole family. Then at 5:30pm, a light supper will be served, leading into the evening Christmas celebration program at 6:45pm.  We hope that you can join us for the whole event, but come as you are able.  Also, if you or your children have made any works of art or creative expressions for this event, please bring them with you.  We would love to display them and to celebrate your creativity.

This Sunday brings us to the 1st Sunday of Advent – a Sunday that begins our waiting, anticipation and expectation for what is to come.  We’ll be starting the service with a ‘Children’s Nativity Processional’.  If your child would like to take part in this, please have them meet in the foyer before the service begins.  The service will continue with songs of praise, readings, scripture & prayers.  During the offering time, we’ll be collecting non-perishable food for those in our community that are struggling to have enough to eat.  (We’ll be doing this throughout the entire advent season.)  A message from God’s word, sharing together at the Lord’s Table and fellowshipping downstairs will complete a beautiful 1st Sunday of Advent.

We hope that you and your family will be able to join us this weekend.

Have a blessed weekend!
Delora

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Praying with scripture (resource for individuals and families)

There is a whole lot of devotional material available. You may have your own preference for that stuff or maybe you’re overwhelmed by all the options and don’t know where to begin. I’d like to highlight one unique resource that I have found very helpful in my walk with God. It’s called Seeking God’s Face: Praying with the Bible Through the Year.

This book has one entry for every day of the year, beginning with Advent. Each day includes a couple of short scripture readings for reflection and prayer, and/or conversation with your spouse or children, some suggestions for “free prayer”, and a closing prayer and benediction. It’s simple and reflective.

There are two things I especially like about this resource:

  1. It puts very little in between you, God, and his word to us. It’s just you, scripture, and a few prayer suggestions.
  2. It’s simple: everything you need for a given day’s prayer and reflection can be found and read on that day’s entry. There’s no flipping between pages or reaching for your Bible to find the passages for the day.

This is a resource that could work for individuals or families and would serve this purpose for many years. Malmo gives this book to its high school grads as a gift to encourage ongoing conversation with God. It might be too late for you to acquire this before Advent begins, but you can start any time. Consider getting it for yourself or your family for Christmas!**

Here are a couple of places you can find it: Wisemen’s Way // Chapters/Indigo // Amazon.ca.

(Compact edition [smaller size, otherwise identical]: Wisemen’s Way // Amazon.ca)

**Pastor Marc has a copy of his own. You’re welcome to have a look at it. Just ask!

 

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Weekly News-November 16

Here’s something different to read this morning – a very ‘down-to-earth’ paraphrase of the Lord’s Prayer, by Shannan Martin from her book The Ministry of Ordinary Places. 

God your name is holy,
You’re in charge of the whole world and heaven.
You give us all we need for today.
You show us grace and ask us to do the same for others, even when it’s hard.
Help us not to be chewed up by the world.  Be our protection against evil.
Everything we see and know, all that we are belongs to you.
You alone have power.  You get the credit for everything, and it is good.
Amen.


It’s starting to feel like we are entering the Christmas season.  Lots to do and see and events to attend.  Take a look at your bulletin for both Malmo and Community events that are coming up.  There’s quite the variety to choose from!

This Sunday is our Covenant Bay Bible Camp Giving Sunday.  Jon Drebert will be with us – sharing about what’s happening at Camp, as well as giving the morning message.  (If you would like to financially support the Camp, please make your cheques payable to ‘Covenant Bay Bible Camp’).

See you Sunday – 9:45am for Sunday School and 11:00am for our Worship service.

Have a great weekend & stay safe on those roads!
Delora

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Weekly News-November 9

We heard a good word from our Conference Superintendent, Glenn Peterson last Sunday about ‘faithfulness’.  He encouraged us to open our eyes to SEE the expressions of faithfulness that are all around us – here in our community and in the field of Malmo where we worship.  And he’s right!  How often do we miss ‘seeing’ what God is doing because it becomes common to us –  or worse yet, we become complacent and forget to be thankful for His faithfulness to us?

One of the other things that Glenn said was… “You have been put with a purpose to be faithful to what God has called, gifted, empowered and enabled you to do.  Be true to who you are, to who God is, and to what He has invited you to do.”   This word is for ALL of us.  God has given each of us a purpose to be faithful IN and WHEREVER He has placed us.  This really is the bedrock of our “what’s next” program…discerning and accepting the gifts that God has given us, stepping into them and watching God continue to be faithful in and through us here at Malmo.

“Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this:
The faithful love of the Lord never ends!
His mercies never cease.
Great is his faithfulness;
his mercies begin afresh each morning.”
~Lamentations 3:21-23


Tomorrow (Saturday) from 5:00 to 8:00pm, there is a Youth Pool Party at the Manluk Centre in Wetaskiwin.  The cost is $12 and it includes pizza, pop and swimming.

A reminder to bring your filled Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes to church this Sunday.  During the service we’ll be sending them off with our love and prayers.  (A big thank you to Charlene for organizing this once again this year!)

Looking forward to Sunday.  See you at 9:45am for Sunday School and 11:00am for our morning Worship service.

Have a great weekend!
Delora

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Weekly News-November 2

It’s the weekend to catch up on your sleep…as we get that extra hour of sleep back that we lost in Spring!  So please remember to turn your clocks BACK ONE HOUR on Saturday evening.  (And if you forget, you’ll be here nice and early for Sunday School – so go ahead and please start the coffee.  😉

This Sunday we have our Canada Conference Superintendent, Glenn Peterson with us.  We’re looking forward to hearing from him – both about the work that’s going on in the Conference, as well as a message from God’s word.  We’ll also be lead to the Lord’s Table by Pastor Marc as we celebrate Holy Communion together.

Looking forward to Sunday.  Stay warm & safe out there as I hear the roads are a bit slick!

Take care,
Delora

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Weekly News-October 26

It’s been quite a season for the farming community.  I’ve heard that a number of you have now completed the harvest (or are very close to completing it) – and we, here in the office, are rejoicing with you and thanking God for His mercies, care and grace!

Being a farmer myself, I understand the complete joy with finishing the harvest and the complete exhaustion you feel when the adrenaline starts to slip away.  And I know this isn’t just common to farmers – many of you are going through your own seasons of struggle and stress.  Can I share a very familiar Psalm 23 with you?  I know that many of you know it by heart, but take a slow reading of it in the Common English Bible version.  It’s so beautifully worded and is a good reminder that it’s God who cares for us and gives us all things – including the rest and peace that is needed after such an intense season.

“The Lord is my shepherd.
I lack nothing.
He lets me rest in grassy meadows;
he leads me to restful waters;
he keeps me alive.
He guides me in proper paths
for the sake of his good name.

Even when I walk through the darkest valley,
I fear no danger because you are with me.
Your rod and your staff—
they protect me.

You set a table for me
right in front of my enemies.
You bathe my head in oil;
my cup is so full it spills over!
Yes, goodness and faithful love
will pursue me all the days of my life,
and I will live in the Lord’s house
as long as I live.”


This past Tuesday, was our Fall Congregational meeting.  We had a great turnout and excellent conversation.  Thank you to all of you who were able to attend!  One of the items that we dealt with was updating our bylaws.  We have printed booklets of the updated Constitution/Bylaws available for you on the Malmo Info table in the foyer.  If you’d like a digital copy, please contact me in the office.

This Sunday we’ll have some special guests with us during the 11:00am Worship Service.  Community members, Todd & Bekki Johnson and their girls will be sharing during the service about their call to missions in Albania.  We’re looking forward to hearing their story.  We’re also excited about welcoming a new member to Malmo during the service!  So it’s going to be a full but lovely Worship service.  We hope that you can join us!

Have a great weekend.  See you Sunday!
Delora

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Weekly News-October 19

“Therefore I…beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.” ~Ephesians 4:1-2

I’ve been wrestling with this verse this week.  I’ve been getting stuck on the word ‘calling’.  Calling…what does it really mean?  If you would’ve asked me a few years ago, I probably would have said that this verse is only for pastors, ministers and missionaries – and for those who God has in a “specific Christian vocation”.  But I’m thinking that’s not the case.  This verse IS for ALL of us.  We have ALL been called by God – and that call will look different for each of us, based on our unique personalities and gifts that He has given us. (Being an accountant, mother, pastor, welder, farmer, etc…).  But as cool as it is to know that I have been called by God, I think the part that’s really important here is the ‘how’ – how do I live into that calling?  Because no matter what our calling is, we are all to live into our call in the same way.  By being…“humble and gentle…patient with each other, making allowance for each other…because of love.”   The only way that I know of doing that is by staying close to Jesus, because it’s impossible to do on my own strength.  Allowing Him to be the focus and most important thing in my life – and not anything else, including what He has called me to.

“People with the strongest and healthiest sense of calling are not obsessed with their calling.  They are preoccupied with the Caller.  With a clear vision of a good, competent and loving God before me, the significance of my own tiny part in His world is safely and manageably held.”
~John Ortberg


This weekend, Pastor Randall and some of our people from across the Covenant, will be at Covenant Bay Bible Camp for the spiritual retreat ‘Sacred Space’.  Please be praying for Pastor Randall as he leads the retreat and for all those attending – for openness and a new awareness of God’s presence and love.

This Sunday during our 11:00am worship service we’re having another ‘Giving Sunday’.  This month we are highlighting ‘Neighbors Outreach Wetaskiwin’ and will be hearing from Blayne about the good work that they are doing in our community.  (If you’d like to financially support them, please make your cheques payable to NOW, and we’ll pass those on for you.) Join us as we gather together to worship, pray, hear God’s word and fellowship.  It’s going to be a great day!

See you on Sunday!
Delora

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Weekly News-October 12

“Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I put my trust in You.  Show me the way to go for to you I lift up my soul.” ~Psalm 143:8

This is one of my favourite verses.  I was reciting it to myself as I was walking to my car in the cool and dampness of this morning.  This morning was hard not to feel discouraged – I was heading to the dentist to get a broken crown fixed, the smell of unharvested, mouldy crops and decay was in the air, and it’s October 12th and only 2 degrees outside.  In my mind, I had lots to complain about.  But this verse comes to my mind, and I recite it over and over again, until the truth of the verse settles me down and the promise of God speaks louder than my discouragement.

“Let the morning…” – God, you’ve woken me up to another day.  You must have plans for me because here I am.
“…bring me word of your unfailing love…” – God, you love me.  Period.  Nothing I can do OR not do will EVER change that.  
“…for I put my trust in You.” God, you know what I need.  You know what my neighbours need.  I trust you for that.  Forgive me when I forget that You’re in control.
“Show me the way to go…” – God, this day is yours.  Direct my steps so I don’t get stuck.  Show me what You would have me do today.
“…to you I lift up my soul.” – God, my soul is yours.  Thank you for accepting me with all my mess and failures. What a gracious and loving God you are.  <3


Do you have plans for tomorrow (Saturday) morning?  Let me encourage you to join us at 10:00am for an Anxiety and Depression seminar, led by Dixie Vandersluys.  Heres’ what Dixie writes about the seminar:

“Depression and anxiety are common words in our society today. But do we really know what they mean? What is like to experience anxiety and depression, especially as a Christian? Dixie Vandersluys will be sharing on depression and anxiety, having experience with both in her counselling career and in her own life. Come and learn in a comfortable environment about these somewhat uncomfortable topics: what they are, what they look like in daily life, and how you and your loved ones can manage and cope. “

This seminar is suitable for ages 13 and up.  Babysitting is available.

Join us this Sunday for Sunday School at 9:45am and our Worship Service at 11:00am.

Have a great weekend.
Delora

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