WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 31ST —
This is Watch Night - and -
This is New Year's Eve.
I hope you conduct yourself in a
manner that will make you and everyone
else proud when tomorrow comes.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 1ST —
HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!
SUNDAY, JANUARY 4TH —
THIS IS EPIPHANY SUNDAY
COLOR IS WHITE OR GOLD
Happy Birthday Pam Fisher!
Happy Birthday Darla Cline!
The preparatory season of Advent and
Season of Christmas culminate today,
the Feast of the Epiphany.
Epiphany for us, is sheer celebration of
God. January 6 was one of the early
Church’s dates for celebrating the birth
of Christ, and with it the coming of the
and the glory of the LORD has risen
upon you. For darkness shall cover the
earth, and thick darkness the peoples;
but the LORD will arise upon you, and
his glory will appear over you"
SCRIPTURE READINGS —
THE MESSAGE (MSG)
Isaiah prophesies to people just
returning from exile that the day would
come when all nations would stream to
1-7 “Get out of bed, Jerusalem!
Wake up. Put your face in the
God’s bright glory has risen for you.
The whole earth is wrapped in
all people sunk in deep darkness,
But God rises on you,
his sunrise glory breaks over you.
Nations will come to your light,
kings to your sunburst brightness.
Look up! Look around!
Watch as they gather, watch as they
Your sons coming from great distances,
your daughters carried by their
When you see them coming you’ll smile
Your heart will swell and, yes, burst!
All those people returning by sea for the
a rich harvest of exiles gathered in
from the nations!
And then streams of camel caravans as
far as the eye can see,
young camels of nomads in Midian
Pouring in from the south from Sheba,
loaded with gold and frankincense,
preaching the praises of God.
And yes, a great roundup
of flocks from the nomads in Kedar
Welcome gifts for worship at my altar
as I bathe my glorious Temple in
PSALM 72:1-7, 10-14
THE MESSAGE (MSG)
In praise of the righteous king who
would receive tribute from all nations.
1-8 Give the gift of wise rule to the king,
the gift of just rule to the crown
May he judge your people rightly,
be honorable to your meek and lowly.
Let the mountains give exuberant
shape the hills with the contours of
Please stand up for the poor,
help the children of the needy,
come down hard on the cruel tyrants.
Outlast the sun, outlive the moon—
age after age after age.
Be rainfall on cut grass,
earth-refreshing rain showers.
Let righteousness burst into blossom
and peace abound until the moon
fades to nothing.
Rule from sea to sea,
from the River to the Rim.
9-14 Foes will fall on their knees before
his enemies lick the dust.
Kings remote and legendary will pay
kings rich and resplendent will turn
over their wealth.
All kings will fall down and worship,
and godless nations sign up to serve
Because he rescues the poor at the first
sign of need,
the destitute who have run out of luck.
He opens a place in his heart for the
he restores the wretched of the earth.
He frees them from tyranny and torture
—when they bleed, he bleeds;
when they die, he dies.
THE MESSAGE (MSG)
Paul says that his imprisonments are
enabling the Gentiles and even the
leaders of the nations to come to know
the mystery that they are invited to
become fellow heirs with Christ Jesus.
THE SECRET PLAN OF GOD
Christ, having taken up the cause of
you outsiders, so-called. I take it that
you’re familiar with the part I was given
in God’s plan for including everybody. I
got the inside story on this from God
himself, as I just wrote you in brief.
4-6 As you read over what I have written
to you, you’ll be able to see for
yourselves into the mystery of Christ.
None of our ancestors understood this.
Only in our time has it been made clear
by God’s Spirit through his holy
apostles and prophets of this new order.
The mystery is that people who have
never heard of God and those who have
heard of him all their lives (what I’ve
been calling outsiders and insiders)
stand on the same ground before God.
They get the same offer, same help,
same promises in Christ Jesus. The
Message is accessible and welcoming
to everyone, across the board.
7-8 This is my life work: helping people
understand and respond to this
Message. It came as a sheer gift to me,
a real surprise, God handling all the
details. When it came to presenting the
Message to people who had no back-
ground in God’s way, I was the least
qualified of any of the available
Christians. God saw to it that I was
equipped, but you can be sure that it
had nothing to do with my natural
writing about things that are way over
my head, the inexhaustible riches and
generosity of Christ. My task is to bring
out in the open and make plain what
God, who created all this in the first
place, has been doing in secret and
behind the scenes all along. Through
followers of Jesus like yourselves
gathered in churches, this extraordinary
plan of God is becoming known and
talked about even among the angels!
11-13 All this is proceeding along lines
planned all along by God and then
executed in Christ Jesus. When we trust
in him, we’re free to say whatever needs
to be said, bold to go wherever we need
to go. So don’t let my present trouble on
your behalf get you down. Be proud!
THE MESSAGE (MSG)
Matthew tells of the visit of the Magi and
their participation in God's subversion
of Herod's plan.
SCHOLARS FROM THE EAST
1-2 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem
village, Judah territory - this was during
Herod’s kingship - a band of scholars
arrived in Jerusalem from the East. They
asked around, “Where can we find and
pay homage to the newborn King of the
Jews? We observed a star in the eastern
sky that signaled his birth. We’re on a
pilgrimage to worship him.”
3-4 When word of their inquiry got to
Herod, he was terrified—and not Herod
alone, but most of Jerusalem as well.
Herod lost no time. He gathered all the
high priests and religion scholars in the
city together and asked, “Where is the
Messiah supposed to be born?”
5-6 They told him, “Bethlehem, in Judah
territory. The prophet Micah wrote it
It’s you, Bethlehem, in Judah’s land,
no longer bringing up the rear.
From you will come the leader
who will shepherd-rule my people,
7-8 Herod then arranged a secret
meeting with the scholars from the East.
Pretending to be as devout as they were,
he got them to tell him exactly when the
birth-announcement star appeared.
Then he told them the prophecy about
Bethlehem, and said, “Go find this child.
Leave no stone unturned. As soon as
you find him, send word and I’ll join you
at once in your worship.”
9-10 Instructed by the king, they set off.
Then the star appeared again, the same
star they had seen in the eastern skies.
It led them on until it hovered over the
place of the child. They could hardly
contain themselves: They were in the
They had arrived at the right time!
11 They entered the house and saw the
child in the arms of Mary, his mother.
Overcome, they kneeled and worshiped
him. Then they opened their luggage
and presented gifts:
gold, frankincense, myrrh.
12 In a dream, they were warned not to
report back to Herod. So they worked
out another route, left the territory with-
out being seen, and returned to their
• 1885 - Dr. William Grant performed the
first successful appendectomy. The
patient was Mary Gartside.
• 1896 - Utah became the 45th U.S. state.
• 1948 - Britain granted independence to
Burma (Now Myanmar).
• 2010 - In Dubai, United Arab Emirates,
the Burj Dubai (Dubai Tower) opened as
the world's tallest tower at 2,625 feet.
MONDAY, JANUARY 5TH
• • THE OFFICE IS CLOSED TODAY • •
• 1781 - Richmond, Virginia, was burned
by a British naval expedition led by
• 1885 - The Long Island Railroad
Company became the first to offer piggy
-back rail service transporting farm
wagons on trains.
• 1914 - Ford Motor Company announced
that there would be a new daily minimum
wage of $5 and an eight-hour workday.
• 1925 - Mrs. Nellie Taylor Ross was
sworn in as the governor of Wyoming.
She was the first female governor in the
• 1933 - Construction of the Golden Gate
Bridge was begun.
• 1948 - Warner Brothers-Pathe showed
the very first color newsreel. The footage
was of the Tournament of Roses Parade
and the Rose Bowl football classic.
TUESDAY, JANUARY 6TH —
• 1900 - It was reported that millions of
people In India, were dying of starvation.
• 1912 - New Mexico became the 47th
• 1945 - The Battle of the Bulge ended
with 130,000 German and 77,000 Allied
• 1994 - Figure skater Nancy Kerrigan
was clubbed on the right leg by an
assailant at Cobo Arena in Detroit, MI.
Four men were sentenced to prison for
the attack, including Tonya Harding's
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 7TH —
Happy Birthday Rex Noland!
• 1558 - Calais, the last British
possession on mainland France, was
recaptured by the French.
• 1789 - Americans voted for the electors
that would choose George Washington
to be the first U.S. president.
• 1896 - The "Fannie Farmer Cookbook"
• 1935 - French Foreign Minister Pierre
Laval and Italian Prime Minister Benito
Mussolini signed the Italio-French
• 1953 - U.S. President Harry Truman
announced the development of the
• 1959 - The United States recognized
Fidel Castro's new government in Cuba.
• 1996 - One of the biggest blizzards in
U.S. history hit the eastern states. More
than 100 deaths were blamed on severe
• 2009 - Russia shut off gas supplies to
Europe through Ukraine. Prime Minister
Vladimir Putin publicly endorsed the
move and urged great international
involvement in the energy dispute.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 8TH ————————————————————
• 1642 - Astronomer Galileo died in
• 1790 - In the United States, George
Washington delivered the first State of
the Union address.
• 1815 - Battle of New Orleans began.
The War of 1812 had officially ended on
December 24, 1814, with the signing of
the Treaty of Ghent. The news of the
signing had not reached British troops
in time to prevent their attack on New
• 1877 - Crazy Horse (Tashunca-uitco)
and his warriors fought their final battle
against the U.S. Cavalry in Montana.
• 1900 - U.S. President McKinley placed
Alaska under military rule.
• 1918 - U.S. President Woodrow Wilson
announced his Fourteen Points as the
basis for peace upon the end of World
• 1958 - Bobby Fisher, at the age of 14,
won the United States Chess Champion-
ship for the first time.
• 1962 - Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa
was exhibited in America for the first
time at the National Gallery of Art in
• 1998 - Scientists announced that they
had discovered that galaxies were
accelerating and moving apart at high
• 2009 - In Egypt, archeologists entered
a 4,300 year old pyramid and discovered
the mummy of Queen Sesheshet.
FRIDAY, JANUARY 9TH —
Happy Birthday Wyatt Vais!
Happy Birthday Alex Gerhards!
Happy Birthday Ralph Sheeder!
• 1799 - British Prime Minister William
Pitt the Younger introduced income tax,
(two shillings to the pound), to raise
funds for the Napoleonic Wars.
• 1861 - The state of Mississippi seceded
from the United States.
• 1902 - New York State introduced a bill
to outlaw flirting in public.
• 1951 - The United Nations headquarters
officially opened in New York City.
• 1972 - The ocean liner Queen Elizabeth
was destroyed by fire in Hong Kong
• 2003 - Archaeologists announced that
they had found five more chambers in
the tomb of Qin Shihuang, China's first
emperor. The rooms were believed to
cover about 750,000 square feet. He
ruled as the First Emperor from 220 to
210 BC. His public works projects
included the unification of many walls
into a single Great Wall of China.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 10TH —
Happy Birthday Alan Beattie!
• 1840 - The penny post, whereby mail
was delivered at a standard charge
rather than paid for by the recipient,
began in England.
• 1861 - Florida seceded from the United
• 1870 - John D. Rockefeller incorporated
• 1920 - The League of Nations ratified
the Treaty of Versailles, officially ending
World War I with Germany.
• 1971 - "Masterpiece Theatre" premiered
on PBS with host Alistair Cooke. The
introduction drama series was
"The First Churchills."
• 1984 - United States and the Vatican
established full diplomatic relations for
the first time in more than a century.
FUTURE FOCUS ——
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 14TH —
• A-C FOOD PANTRY: 6 TO 8 P.M.
Thank you for your hard work this week.
Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas
and I wish for you a magnificent new
year — Happy 2015!
God Bless and keep you,