Welcoming All, Empowered by Christ, Sent Forth to Serve

October 6-7, 2017 Worship Planning Retreat

This weekend we gathered at the Founder’s Home at Maranatha Bible and Missionary Conference Center in Norton Shores to plan worship for the upcoming year. What an amazing weekend!!! Pastor Mary shared this with the participants:

Thanks to each one of you for your time and commitment to this first-ever worship planning retreat. I am deeply grateful for your willingness to participate fully and faithfully – and to create a safe space where holy conversations can happen and great ideas can be shared. It really was holy space and a wonderful blessing and gift to be with you. I am thankful to serve God alongside you! Grace and peace, Pastor Mary 🙂

Thank you to all fourteen participants and our two wonderful cooks! Everyone but the photographer, Larry Jorgenson, is pictured below.

Here is a month by month look at the worship calendar:

 Visit http://lakeharborumc.org/2017/05/planning-one-year-of-sermons/ to see the original documents the team used in planning. Click here for retreat evaluation and here for scripture we might use this year.

Planning sheets for each series will be added, below, as they come together. Each series will be part of a year-long theme: Hope, peace, joy, and love are found in Jesus and Jesus alone.

Dec. 3, 2017 – Jan. 7, 2018:Angels Among Us” (last updated 10/13/17)

The angels that appear in the story of Jesus’ birth were short and to the point, “Do Not Be Afraid.” We’ll look at how their messages point toward more hope, more peace, more joy, more love, more worship, and ultimately, more life.

Jan. 14 – Feb. 11, 2018: Faith in Films

We’ll use these films as a jumping off point for the messages, but not necessarily in this order:

Feb. 18 – April 1, 2018: “Gifts of the Dark Wood ”

We’ll use Gifts of the Dark Wood: Seven Blessings for Soulful Skeptics (and Other Wanders) by Eric Elnes.

April 8 – 29, 2018: “Witness: Integrity, Humility, Authenticity, and Unity”

What is our witness? Will people be able to tell the we are Christians without being told?

May 6 – June 24, 2018: “Through the Eyes of a Child”

May 6’s service will be presented by Lake Harbor’s children. The remaining weeks we will focus on God’s plan for us by looking through the eyes of a child. Do we live with joy? Do we still have the ability to trust? Do we make time to play and rest? Have we thought about God’s favorite show and tell? What does “Like Father, Like Son” mean?  How will we know if we have lived “Long Enough”?

July 1-29, 2018: “Hot Topics”

We have a hard time talking about some issues. Using narrow labels isn’t very helpful, nor is jumping to conclusions quickly. It is not clear which issues we will tackle, but some of the ones that seem to get us hot under the collar include health care, hate, racism, human sexuality, porn, money, mental health, and climate.

Aug. 5 – Sept. 2, 2018: “Psalms”

Many people turn to the Psalms for comfort. We’ll take a look at this book in some depth.

Sept. 9 – 30, 2018: “Back to School”

Who is God? Who Is Jesus? Who is the Holy Spirit? What is the Holy Trinity? What are the sacraments?

Oct 7 – 28, 2018: “Stewardship”

Like the congregation in “All Saints,” we want to celebrate the good things we have done together as with God’s guidance and connect it to the spiritual discipline of giving.

Nov. 4 – 25, 2018: “(Good?!) Grief”

Everyone experiences grief. How does God use it for good? We will use the book/film, “The Shack.”